On the road up to Zhigalovo we started on the proper off road part. From here on it would be next to nothing of hard surfaces until Magadan. As normal Walter and Terry rode quite hard, but we were able to keep up. Midway up Erik and I stopped and agreed that we should do some filming. I rode ahead and rigged up the video camera, but no Erik showed up. I waited for ten minutes before I headed back. A couple of click back he was standing by the side of the road. He was not a happy camper. It turned out that the subframe for the fairing was cracked. We patched it up as good as we could and continued the last bit. When we got to Zhigalovo I noticed that I also had a crack in my subframe. Sit happens and then you fix it
A couple of years ago two guys came through Zhigalovo on two KTM's. They needed some alu welding done and some small shop did it for them. We were to head over to that shop the next day. We spent the evening dismounting everything.
A new dawn came and we headed over to the shop with the alu frames.
After a little while a guy named Alex came over and said he worked there. We asked if he could help us. He was not sure if they could weld aluminum so he called his boss. Negative answer
Bad new for us. But Alex was very keen on helping us. He asked us to wait a few minutes and took off. Four minutes later he came back in an old diesel Mazda. A decent size joint in his in his mouth and Vodka by his side. He told us to jump in
The adventure continues
We headed over to a shipyard. In the middle of Siberia
It didn't look right...
Lena is a pretty big river in Russia. It is also one of the main transport veins in the region. Maybe a shipyard is not so out of place anyway
If you have to deal with government or businesses of a certain scale the bureaucracy in Russia is interesting. Everything takes time and you need to talk to lots of people and get many stamps. Same here. We went through many offices. From the managing director and his secretary, whom I bet was a local champion shot putter, to the engineer who calculated the price. It took three hours. I practice Yoga quite a bit. Now I went to my Zen place
Things work better then
When we were done at the shipyard Alex insisted that we should follow him home for a cup of tea. We could not say no after all the help he had given us. He took us home and served us tea and pulled out his guitar. Then he blew us away. The man could both sing and play
He told us that he used to play in a band in Severobaikalsk before he came to Zhigalovo.
The house next door.
We did spend some time listening to Alex before we insisted we had to go and get the bikes done. He really did not want us to leave. This is the genuine Russian friendship and hospitality. We, in the "Civilized" world, do have something to learn...
Later that day it was time for food. Walter was leading the way