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Old 04-28-2013, 03:30 PM   #27
swamp OP
U lie&yo'breff stank
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Joined: Feb 2007
Location: lower appalachia, Alabama
Oddometer: 1,883
riding south: mexico and central bunghole

April 11, 2013 Thursday
Progreso to Oxkutzcab Yucatan Mexico

So what’s on the menu for the first day of riding?

The original plan that had taken me a few months to draw out on my GPS unit and hard maps of Central America would soon be trashed after this first day of riding. Now that I’m home, on my soft orange couch I can laugh about it but this first day on the road pushed my frustrato-meter past the glass and the problems would not let up for the next three days! I had literally lost my mind (I’m not feeding you shit here) and I wouldn’t find it again until Panama.

4:00 Thursday April 11

I did the pre-ride ritual dance step of: underwear, sox, knee guards, pants, boots, elbow guards, jersey, gloves, watch, helmet, goggles, load up the god damn bike then realize you gotta’ take one last shit before you leave and finally forget to put the earplugs in. After “the prophecy” was fulfilled I tracked down the night manager to have him open the gate for me. I bring up the waypoint for the Mexico/Belize border on my GPS unit then hit the big, green, GO button.

The Sun hasn’t come up yet and I’m doing 75mph down the highway South through Merida. By 7:00 I’m approximately 8 miles past the little town of Telchaquillo when I feel a very strong disturbance in The Force. At first I think “oh, flat tire, slow down”; immediately after that thought came “that’s not a flat” followed by the bike’s rear end violently bucking and tracking .. well, “wrong”.

I pull over onto my handlebar width allotment of shoulder space, put the bike on the center stand then look down at the rear tire. Just as I look down the tube bulges out from between the tire bead and the rim like its some kind of living blob then POW! Tube pieces go everywhere. “what the crap?” I think to myself “never had that happen before hmmm..”

Tools out, I get down to business removing the rear wheel while cars and huge 18 wheel trucks see how close they can come to me without actually hitting me. “Well at least its not 13:00 and hotter than Hell”. Upon closer inspection of the tire I realize what had happened; the steel belts (cables) that are inside of the bead had been broken. I remember seeing at least three broken cables and thinking “son of a bitch, now what? I cant believe this is happening ALREADY!” The brand new Dunlop 606 and ultra-heavy duty tube that I had installed before I shipped the bike were totally thrashed within the first 100 and something miles of the ride.

As much fun as it sounds, I really didn’t want to be stuck on this road which is a known Los Zetas drug trafficking route. Lets just say that Mr. Gravlee was in a little bit of a hurry to get his white ass down the god damn road to someplace with witnesses (and a new tire).

Spare rear tube comes out of my bag and I install it into the tube with broken belts. The tire is so easy to get on the rim with the broken belts.. no bueno gringo. I use the electric compressor that I keep in the tail section to air up the tube. The whole time that I’m doing this I know that the fix is not going to hold up for very long, but MAYBE I can make it to a house or a cross road or what would have been a big, one man high-five; a gas station.

I make it maybe two minutes creeping down the road sweating bullets before the tire comes off the rim and the tube is flat again (arrrrgghh). Same process starts over: center stand, tools out, remove wheel, remove tube, wheel on straight ? I only have a front tube left so I stuff the 21” in the rear and air it up, “must go forward”. Surprisingly, I get further down the road on the front tube being in the rear than the rear tube being in the rear before the tire comes off the rim and the tube is torn.

I get off the bike and scream “fuuuuck!” as loud as I can until I start coughing. A few seconds of just looking at the sides of the road (filled with nothing but thick, grey thorn bushes and rock) tells me that people don’t usually slow down to enjoy the scenery around here which means I better get my ass in gear flagging down trucks before it gets hot. So that is what I do.

out comes one of the yellow dry bags out of from luggage. I begin the process of waving the yellow bag at every passing vehicle that I think can haul my bike. A truck going the opposite direction as I was going passes me, slows down, turns around and parks right in the middle of the road next to my bike. He turns his flashers on, exits the Ford F-150 and walks quickly towards me. He is about my height, a little heavier, age around 43, wearing a blue button down cowboy shirt with the sleeves rolled up and some silver necklaces.

He looks at my tire and at first he thinks it’s a flat. I point at the tire where it has come off the rim and keep repeating “numero tres”. I point to the bike then to the back of his truck. He nods yes as we get passed by an 18 wheeler from Hell. We get the front end into the truck easy enough but as we go to lift the ass end into the truck my homie’s shoulder blows out and we drop the bike. He points at his shoulder and waives no and points at the bike then points at me, then walks to the right side of the bike to steady the front end which is still in the truck. OK then; I summon the Power of Castle Greyskull and let loose a crackling guttural, torture-scream that’s laced in spit and the boogery, yellow saliva deposits that form in the corners of a motorcyclists bearded mouth. Somehow, just before blacking out, I had lifted the rear into the back of his truck.

He tells me to get in the back and hold onto it. OK. So I put it in gear stand next to it and hold the front brake. He keeps pointing at himself and saying “paseo paseo” and giving the universal hand signal for “I’m going to drive slow”. Cool . I guess “paseo “ means slow. My Spanish is improving already.

Not exactly what I wanted for Christmas but I guess it will do

Perfect place to change a few tubes and deal with a tire with broken belts. An absolutely IDEAL situation

tube go bang

Next Time:
"stupid mfff, blurrr gaaad ..ffff!"
Enduro Earth

off the grid and deep in the woods

swamp screwed with this post 04-28-2013 at 03:40 PM
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