Wednesday 11th December 2013
Miles Today 0 Total 28,540
Today was a catch up day. I got Ray to actually come shopping with me and we found a large shopping mall, near the old fort.
|The fort overseeing the old town.|
There were a few essentials that we both needed, and to be honest, it was lovely being in an air conditioned mall, it really is hot out there.
|Decorations in the mall|
|Busses and Taxis were all mad and plentiful.|
|Tall ships in the harbour.|
|One of the more decorated streets.|
|Believe it of not these are Taxis too.|
It appears to be the norm, that every evening around 6pm, there is a serious downpour, and once that had passed, we slipped out for some food and then had an early night.
Thursday 12th December 2013
Miles Today 228 Total 28,768
We were up early and everyone was ready for the off around 8am. The hotel lobby looked quite bare once all the bikes were out on the street. We were heading straight for Medellin and the others were going north first. It was a long road, and seemed to go by really slowly. It was not however uneventful. Getting out of town was pretty fraught, and you needed eyes in the back of your head and anywhere else you can fit them, but Ray muscled his way through, and soon we were on the open road.
The mayhem escaping town. This is the norm for the locals but was intimidating for us.
The road is two lanes, mostly cutting a tarmac ribbon through the jungle, and on going around a bend, you would find yourself suddenly in a little town or village. We stopped at a couple of the little places to have coffee and as soon as we landed we were surrounded by locals all admiring Wallace, and asking how big an engine she had, they were phoning their friends to come and see her and taking pictures of her, it was very friendly and quite funny as well.
|At a roadside cafe.|
(Ray) This guy was trying to intimidate me to stop by waving the concrete in my face but he could not see me due to the blacked out visor. I had a very quick decision to make and bear in mind we have been in a lot of riots in our time and it was almost just another day at the office for us! It was turn around and add on another 200km or so or just nail it. I decided 1/2 a ton of Wallace surging at the guy was a lot more intimidating than his handful of concrete. I was right. On whacking open the throttle, the guy lost his bottle and jumped out of the way just in time.
(Karen) There was a lot of broken glass in the road, but we made it through, past the trouble, and without me getting hit by any missiles on my back. I was glad we were in full motorcycling gear which provided us with some protection. We didn't stop until the next town, where we stopped for petrol, and Ray mentioned the trouble to the garage attendant who kind of just shrugged his shoulders as if it was an every day occurrence. Main thing was we were safe.
|We have no idea what this is about but they are everywhere|
|They forgot to do the upper floor !|
Friday 13th December 2013
Miles Today 180 Total 28,720
We had less miles to do today and were looking to get to Medellin and have a bit of a look round. We are booked into a hostel, called the Tiger's Paw, along with the group from Cartagena. The road was actually very slow, long hard going and was so bumpy that I was in a lot of pain with my shoulder.
|The river we followed for about 50 miles.|
|Another roadside cafe.|
We were climbing up into the mountains, and although the temperature was more comfortable, the journey was anything but. The scenery was very beautiful and we stopped near the top for coffee and a bit of respite.
|As we entered the mountains it cooled a lot and the scenery got better.|
|For praying whilst doing an oil change and car wash.|
As I got off the bike a Japanese man, approached me and shook my hand. Very nice I thought. Then, in perfect English, he said his name was Fujii Hasashi and he was the Yamaha boss for the whole of South America. Wow ! Then he went on to tell me that he was one of the Wallace's designers. An even bigger WOW.
|Half the window contingent.|
|Fujii giving me his card. We were both as chuffed as each other.|
(Karen) After eventually making good our escape about 2 hours later, we found the hostel. They are not as bad as they used to be, there are separate bedrooms and bathrooms, and we were given room number one. They have one thing in their favour and that is they are cheap and clean. We were going to have to move bedrooms for our second night to a shared bathroom, but I can live with that, we are going to the Galapagos Islands for our Christmas treat, so bring on the hostels till then. I went to bed early after we had eaten and Ray waited for the others to arrive. The music coming from the reception area was loud and we were told that it would end at 12.30am, so we decided not to be too grumpy and old, and work our way through it.
Saturday 14th December 2013
Miles Today 5 Total 28,725
At 4.30am this morning, I was running out of goodwill to all men, the music was still blaring and as it stopped at 5am, two of the most considerate travelers, I have had the pleasure not to meet, started playing snooker outside our room. Hostels, you can shove them where the sun don't shine! There is no truth in the rumour that I am grumpy or an 'angry bird', but to be honest, maybe I just have to accept I am getting old.
Anyway, we packed and took our time getting ready to sit about until they had got our new room ready for us. Ray had to go back to the Yamaha dealership, and apparently, just as they were closing, he discovered that our lights don't work, so he is off trying to sort that out.
(Ray) I got to the dealer and one of the managers handed me the filter and said that it was a present from Mr Fujii ! I stayed a whils as they had just had the new version of Wallace delivered and I also needed to change the filter. The workshop staff were a bit put out that I wanted to do it myself but understood when I explained it was part of the whole trip experience and I enjoyed doing it. As the garage was shutting at 1pm I showed one of the managers a switch I had installed to turn the lights off (they are permanently on normally) they would not come on at all. Doh!
They wanted to sort it but I again insisted I wanted to do it and came back to the hotel. It took about 2 hours to bet a new battery for my electric multi test meter and then about 1/2 an hour to trace the fault to a corroded connection. Probably due to the salt water thrown over it for the rough sea trip.
We finished off the evening with a meal with all the other guys we had met on the boat and then a trip down into the Christmas Fair in town.
|The last supper. Tomorrow we separate.|
|The lights were impressive.|
|Like a scene from Avatar. The tree of light.|
|Kids playing in the fountains.|
|Part of the mobbed mayhem.|