Miles – 173
- 80 more kms of rough dirt road, lost my licence plate
- Right after arriving in Abancay Jim gets a flat on the rear tire.
- 15 year-old tire repairman whips a patch on it in no time
- Over 100 spectators watching us re-assemble the bike
- Another hour of steep climbing dirt -Chain came off 4 times
- Australian motorcycle grand prix of sharp hairpins
Just as we rolled into Abancay, yours truly got a flat rear tire. Ironically, it happened within 50 yards of a llanteria (tire repair shop). The propietor of this fine establishment was a dimunitive 15-year old who could have passed for 12.
|The tire repairman of Abancay||Jay had little patience for my dawdling, and quickly took over, barking out orders to me and removed the tire in no time. If had been left to me and the Peruvians it probably would have taken hours. Once the wheel was off, our little tire repairman went to work. People kept filling the doorway, more to stare at the two strangers in the brightly colored outfits, than to observe the mundane chore of fixing a flat. Annoyed by the loss of his main source of light, the repairman (boy) would cup his hands and fill them with water which he would fling at the doorway, temporarily emptying it of the curious onlookers. In addition to fixing my flat, he pounded out a serious dent I put in the rim in Central America.|
|Exactly 34 miles outside of Abancay, the road went from rough potholes and gravel to pristine asphalt! Jay and I worshipped our newfound driving surface. This lasted for exactly 43 miles at which point it returned to its prior shoddy state. What we couldn’t understand was why there was this stretch of perfect road in the middle of nowhere. It did not connect any major towns or other strategic points as far as we could tell. And if the goal was to pave the road from Abancay to Cusco, why not start at one end and work to the other end?||
The funny thing is,
||In any event, our beautiful road turned into gravel and potholes, then back into fairly decent paved road. Along the way, Jay was giving me pointers about how to slide the back of the bike around the corners and then “give ‘er gas” and push it around.|
|I was improving, but because Jay was following me, I felt some pressure to try a little harder. At one point, I just about missed the turn and was teetering on the edge of a several thousand foot drop-off. (Remember, this is one of the highest roads in the world.)
I told Jay to go ahead of me, otherwise I was going to kill myself trying to impress him.
Black gold, asphalt!
Upon arriving in Cusco, Jay went into town. I expected him to wait for me outside of town, before the road split, he expected me to locate the town square and wait there. So, he went to the town square and waited with Dave and Leanne, while I was riding around town looking for them. It was a mess and everybody was upset. Jason was really upset, he was envisioning my corpse at the bottom of a ravine.
Anyway, I ran into David later that night and found out where they were staying. I had already gotten my own hotel. (There is really a long story here, but we simply don«t have the time to tell it right now.)