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Old 01-10-2013, 09:35 AM   #211
ride4321
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Just spent the last day reading your wonderful RR Hewby. Love your writing style and honesty. You've really been dealing with the bike troubles like a champ. Hope you're feeling better and enjoy your next couple of weeks with Marcin. You're doing an excellent job with this report.
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Old 01-11-2013, 02:44 PM   #212
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The airline managed to lose my bag with ALL of my moto gear, so instead of heading out tomorrow to meet Hewby, I have to stay in Arequipa until they find my gear or they stop looking

Not the start to my Peru trip that I was hoping for.
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Old 01-11-2013, 03:40 PM   #213
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As I think I said to Deb back in September, If it was easy, everyone would be doing it.

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Old 01-13-2013, 04:43 AM   #214
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Quote:
Originally Posted by huzar View Post
The airline managed to lose my bag with ALL of my moto gear, so instead of heading out tomorrow to meet Hewby, I have to stay in Arequipa until they find my gear or they stop looking

Not the start to my Peru trip that I was hoping for.
When I flew to Idaho a few years ago I WORE my moto gear and carried my helmet. The rental car people had some questions when I set my helmet on their counter.
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Old 01-13-2013, 08:04 AM   #215
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blesk View Post
When I flew to Idaho a few years ago I WORE my moto gear and carried my helmet. The rental car people had some questions when I set my helmet on their counter.
I've done that exact same thing. Airline attendants/pilots quite amused!
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Old 01-18-2013, 07:40 AM   #216
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ride4321 View Post
Just spent the last day reading your wonderful RR Hewby. Love your writing style and honesty. You've really been dealing with the bike troubles like a champ. Hope you're feeling better and enjoy your next couple of weeks with Marcin. You're doing an excellent job with this report.
Thanks. So behind again on the report as been focused on making quick miles south and catching up with Huzar. Will catch up again sometime. But if you want a different and much more up to date perspective on our ride in Peru he is posting a RR here...http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=856404
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Old 01-30-2013, 08:59 AM   #217
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Ok back on track. I am now travelling alone again, and will just update a little of Columbia and Ecuador and Northern Peru, before I start to make my way into Bolivia, or wherever i am going.
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Old 01-30-2013, 09:06 AM   #218
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I have a godfather in Bolivia. I hear it's quite the place :)
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Old 01-30-2013, 09:08 AM   #219
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Leaving Medellin

Plans change. I wake up and am feeling awful. My time in Medellin starts to pass passes through fits of sleep, rolls of tissues, head colds and to make things worse stomach cramps. 2 days passes and I don’t know where they went. Friday I call BMW to check on the status of the fan: they still don’t have it. Friday night I talk to a lovely Romanian couple on a KTM and a 650GS who convince me that after their day of on the cheap bike repairs I should be able to find a cheap fan and doctor something to fit. I am still feeling sketchy and I am a little unconvinced I have enough mechanical skills or Spanish skills to pull this off. Then Al tells me that Monday is another holiday and if I don’t get the bike tomorrow I will be waiting till at least next Tuesday to ride south. My time is ticking by, Huzar flies into southern Peru in seven days from now, and I was hoping to meet him in Nazca a few thousand km from here. I am feeling the pressure.

I go to BMW early Saturday, missing out on a ride with the Romanians and Al to the highland lakes. I sit and persuade the BMW people to do something. If the new fan is not in, as they say it isn’t, fix the old fan or give me a fan from another bike. Then they tell me that they close today not at 5pm but at 12.50pm; in an hour. My options are not good but each day is another day lost and a more dangerous ride south, so they reluctantly go to install a second hand fan, though stating they have to charge me the full $380 price for it! Was that BMW/ Bring my wallet? I feel sick.

At 12.30 they suddenly come through the door bearing a new fan they ‘just found’. They install it and thankfully I am on my way. After checking out of the pub I am on the road by 3 winding my way through the mountains. I hope to reach Salento which I have been told is beautiful, but time is against me. I wind my way through the lovely hills.

DSC00277

DSC00283

The third lane is for motorcycles
GOPR0066


GOPR0614

But it takes longer than I thought and as it gets dark I decide to pull into my first ’24 hour love hotel’. Much to the surprise of the young lady that ran it; It was just me and the bike. She told me the prices: 4000C an hour, four hours for 15,000 or we could have until the morning for 25,000 but she looked at us again. Ok 20,000 . A man comes over from the next door pool complex and watches as I negotiate the bike into the room, and invites us both back to the pool to eat Mango and have some drinks. The hotel lady is young and has a 6 year old child that lives with her family. She asks questions of my relationship status and my travels. Her eyes widen and she tells me she is looking for a good man, but would like to travel as I do. Another bike pulls up and two men get off brining beer, and Rum. One of them becomes deeply engaged with the hotel lady, and the other rides off in the darkness after a few drinks to ‘get his girlfriend from the local village’. The Pool man starts to complement my poor Spanish and I decide its time to leave the party, and make use of the fact that my bike is securely stored in my room, beside my bed of all things, cook some dinner, and get to work on sorting out my bike.

DSC00280
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Old 01-30-2013, 09:10 AM   #220
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DustyRags View Post
I have a godfather in Bolivia. I hear it's quite the place :)
Yes I have heard that, excited!
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Old 01-30-2013, 09:18 AM   #221
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Warning the next post contains adult content.

If you are easily offended please disregard and start following me in Ecuador
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Old 01-30-2013, 09:21 AM   #222
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The love hotel – 50 shades of Amarillo.

Feeling the vibrations of the thumper between my legs, I wind down the hill in the setting sun of the Columbian hills. The sign catches my eye, ‘Cabanas 24 hours.’ The ubiquitous love hotel flickers a need within me and I turn the bike round to go inside. The bike and I had been separated for days, I felt he had been neglected by me, as while he was away in the shop, broken and muddy, and I had coveted another.

After a quick negotiation of price and time, We pull together into the room towards the huge bed. The mirrors in the wall reflect his muddy Amarillo curves back at me. I strip off my riding gear and throw it on the bed.
I started by washing him down, caressing his curves with a damp rag, buffing him softly, then harder as I worked the muddy caked Amarillo into a crisp shine.

I start to work deeper. Pulling out my tools to tighten his bolts, to erect the drooping indicators. I try to turn him on to check his lights, but I blew a number of fuses by playing with the little spot on the back left indicator, climaxing and sparking something deep within him. Blowing fuses necessitating a change of tactics and a slow detailed inspection of the wiring under his seat. I replaced the fuse and turned him on again, hoping he would come with me, but the left indicator still let me down. I changed tacks, replaced the fuse and started to work him up again. This time just touching the break slightly, the lights at the back flashed and the he continued to pur. I had found his weak point, but the fuses were running out, so I taped over the indicator, until we would work together better further down the road.

I cooked up some dinner on the petrol stove, him giving me the juice I needed to sustain myself.

Swirling of insects coming to the light as we stayed up together well into the evening. Outlasting the bugs that feel into the love heart shaped bin. The sound of the door bell of the other rooms was going off all night, as others came and went, but we stayed up late into the night, caressing, inspecting bolts, rubbing down, greasing his chain, checking his oil.

I fell into bed finally exhausted at 1am smelling of grease and I slept with him beside me, my feet wrapped around the front wheel. Spare bolts, blown fuses and ruminates of boot polish, the forays of our evening littering the room.

Not sure this love hotel had seen love like this before, but its one I will never forget.
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Old 01-30-2013, 09:32 AM   #223
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You continue to amaze. Abrazos.
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Old 01-30-2013, 09:35 AM   #224
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Wicked

Great writing
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Old 01-30-2013, 09:46 AM   #225
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Carnaval de Negros y Blancos

I leave early, saying goodbye to the crew from last night leaving gifts of items no longer needed on my bike and some stickers for the hotel ladies son. I ride down the valley towards Cali and the electrics (Speedo, odo, blinkers and break lights) suddenly blow on my bike again as I turn into a petrol station to fuel up. Joy. Oh well at least I am getting closer to fixing it now. I drive on heading to Popayan. Strangely there become more and more people on the side of the road pointing hoses from their houses and wetting people as they pass. Kids start to throw water bombs. Then I start to see the occasional shaving cream or flour attack on passes by. Interesting. I am not quite sure what’s going on.
GOPR0865

As the afternoon wears on I see a sign for ‘tres leche pastel’ and I decide to pull round the bike to stop for some food. As I am negotiating the thick gravel a man and his wife come up to me and ask me about the bike and my travels. He tells me he loves motorcycle touring and his wife asks me if I want to come back to their house for lunch. I agree and follow them as they jump on their little 125 and head down a steep grassy track. We leave the bikes on the hill at the end of the track and walk down to their shack. They show me that they are building a new house and show me round the property and then give me a three course meal.
DSC00295

I am blown away by their generosity. They ask me of my plans and I tell them I am heading to Popayan then onto Ecuador. They tell me that they had just returned from there after visiting their daughter in hospital, and they had struggled riding back to the house safely due to the festival. They urge me to miss the town as the water festival was making it dangerous to ride.


I take their advice as I take my leave and continue to head south. Missing the water festival was not so easy however. The buckets of water in my face get more and more frequent then at one point I a little village I am stopped by a procession of masked people dancing to the flute and the drum. They surround my bike and start gently pasting me and my bike with flour and shaving cream. I laugh and try and use the gopro to take photos. ‘Welcome to Columbia’ they shout. They finally let me pass but not before playing me a tune and showing me a dance, and all shaking my now white hand.
GOPR0922

GOPR0938

DSC00302

I head into the hills in the beautiful setting sun. Enjoying the riding. Smiling at the day. Stopping for photos and playing tag with a car that seems to be doing the same.
DSC00351

DSC00352


I wonder how many km’s I have done looking down at my blank Odo. I guess I should get petrol soon. Strange I think as my fuel light has not come on. Suddenly the bike begins to splutter. Then stop. I am alone in the hills and it seems my fuse has blown my fuel light as well. My extended trip means I don’t know how far I have actually traveled. A little Panic comes over me. I feel stupid. No petrol in the Columbian hills at night. I get out the tiny bit of gas I have in the MSR bottle and put it in the bike. I guess the car that I have been playing tag with all afternoon should be passing soon. I am right and I flag him down as he passes. He speaks a little English and I ask he follows me incase I run out of gas before I find more fuel. He obliges and tells me his GPS states I should get fuel in the next 30km. I ride and see a closed down gas station. The panic comes back. He reassures me there is a town close and we go on into the darkness. Finally I pull up into the town and the gas station. The man in the car tells me he is driving on for the next 2 hours to Pasto if I want an escort. He tells me its ok to drive at night this weekend because during the holidays the police protect the roads from the FARC who might on other days hijack your car in the mountains! I don’t know if he was trying to convince me that it was safe, or scare me, but I declined his offer and found a cheap grimy hotel next to the gas station. Relived to be safely out of the mountains.


I ask at the hotel for Internet but the old lady seems not to know what I am talking about. After a time and talking between other patrons they decide that I would not find any in this town due to the holiday and the time of day. I feel I really need to check in after a few days of silence of my location and wander the town looking for Internet and food. People wander the street like colorful ghosts. Wet, with faces smeared in paint and hair white with flour.
I am reminded of the festivals of Holi in India and Sonkran in Thailand. The main square is full of white people dancing in sunglasses. But since my time in Medellin I am cautious about showing valuables I the open, especially at night and only sneak a few distant photos.
IMG_3867

IMG_3870

I finally find a beat up computer, in the back of a shop, that they let me write a quick email, and check in on Facebook. Its excruciatingly slow and all the keys have been wiped off, but it quells the concern of those following my travels at home. When I get off the computer 20 minutes later as the shop is closing, the owners refuse payment, and send me away with a smile. Columbians are lovely. As I eat dinner in a local restaurant the local news displays the extent of the festival in Pasto. I ask a local about the festival and what it is about and they tell me it it’s the Carnaval de Negros y Blancos. Seemingly a festival over a week or so, but today is Whites Day!


I go back to the hotel and fix the bike again, sorting out finally my electrical issues finding the shorting in the indicator. That is one thing for the same problem returning multiple times; It gives you a chance to actually learn how to fix it!
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Hewby screwed with this post 01-30-2013 at 10:12 AM
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