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"To see a world in a grain of sand, And a heaven in a wild flower; Hold infinity in the palm of your hand, And eternity in an hour." William Blake


BBQ in Bolivia

September 13th, 2009 by sunflowers

One of the motorbiker invited us to a BBQ to celebrate their son’s 17th birthday. Thanks to Gonzalo and his family for making us feel so welcome. And thanks to Patricio who works on DR650’s for the Bolivian police and had a look at my bike and discovered the clutch seal had started to come out.

La PazLa PazLa PazLa Paz

La PazLa PazLa PazLa Paz

Posted in Bolivia | No Comments »


The Bolivian Welcome Party

September 12th, 2009 by sunflowers

There are some days that are perfect. I headed out from Puno to La Paz along Lake Titicaca feeling pretty lucky that I was able to do this trip. Watching the women working in the fields along side the lake, watching the mountains in the distance.

When I first started planning this trip I was going to buy a bike off a guy who was riding from the US down until his father emailed me to say that he had a head on with a truck in Bolivia and was pretty broken up but alive. Then someone emailed me a blog of someone doing this trip and they had just had an accident in Bolivia and broke their leg.

As I am a bit of a weekend long distance rider I wasn’t really looking forward to the rough roads of Bolivia so between that and my sister being here I am going to leave my motorbike in La Paz and travel on bus for a while. So the motorbikers that I emailed about storing my bike in La Paz rode out to meet me just after the Bolivian border and I had my own personal escort into Bolivia. With a delicious trout meal along the way. Thanks to Alfonso and Oscar for organising!

BoliviaBoliviaBoliviaBolivia

BoliviaBoliviaBoliviaBolivia

BoliviaBoliviaBoliviaBolivia

BoliviaBoliviaBoliviaBolivia

BoliviaBoliviaBoliviaBolivia

Posted in Bolivia | 1 Comment »


Riding to Puno, Peru

September 11th, 2009 by sunflowers

The ride from Arequipa to Puno was about six hours and there were parts of it that I had the road totally to myself which I was enjoying until I remembered that a women that rode from the US to Peru and has been giving me encouragement had been on a road in Peru and someone tried to force her off the road until she indicated she was with a taxi. Then I was a bit worried until I saw this couple on bicycles who after 10-15 miles of construction that looked shattered.

Good news! I managed to make it through Peru without being stopped by the police once. Yeah!

PunoPunoPunoPuno

PunoPunoPunoPuno

Posted in Peru | No Comments »


Flight of the Condors

September 10th, 2009 by sunflowers

The main reason for going to Colca Canyon is to see the Andean Condors. They have a wing span of 15 feet (3 metres) and I was told by a pilot in Quito they are the only bird to show up on air traffic control systems. They are pretty hard to photo but you get the idea.

We also saw the pre-inca terraces, Inca graves up in the cliffs and took some cheesy photos.

Colca CanyonColca CanyonColca CanyonColca Canyon

Colca CanyonColca CanyonColca CanyonColca Canyon

Colca CanyonColca CanyonColca CanyonColca Canyon

Colca CanyonColca CanyonColca CanyonColca Canyon

Colca CanyonColca CanyonColca CanyonColca Canyon

Posted in Peru | 1 Comment »


Colca Canyon

September 9th, 2009 by sunflowers

We did a two day tour out to Colca Canyon (twice as deep as the Grand Canyon) and on the first day stopped to see the llamas and alpacas, made a little stone tower with a wish, went to the hot springs and to a folklore show.

Colca CanyonColca CanyonColca CanyonColca Canyon

Colca CanyonColca CanyonColca CanyonColca Canyon

Colca CanyonColca CanyonColca CanyonColca Canyon

Colca CanyonColca CanyonColca CanyonColca Canyon

Posted in Peru | No Comments »


Want to Work

September 8th, 2009 by sunflowers

ArequipaArequipaArequipaArequipa is called the White City due to all the white stone that is used in Peru’s second largest city. We spent the day visiting a nunnery that had been closed for four hundred years though being from the cities society they still had servants, opulent living accommodation and specialised in making pastries. Better than being married off to someone that you didn’t like.

I know that IT project management might not seem that exciting to other people but I like my job and enjoy working in the energy industry. I am looking forward to starting work again so when a recruitment agent emailed me about a job I decided to put my CV forward for a position in the new year and emailed a few of my old colleagues to find out if they know of anything going.

ArequipaArequipaArequipaArequipa

ArequipaArequipaArequipaArequipa

Posted in Peru | No Comments »


Insane Riding

September 7th, 2009 by sunflowers

I had 560kms (350 miles) to do in order to get to the next major city. This isn’t a problem when you are on big straight highways but I had to do this windy coastal road which at times had sand covering half the road and at one stage cut across a sand dune. But the scenery was amazing and I saw some interesting clouds. Sometimes the clouds are hovering above a mountain and another time formed layer above the water.

Small towns in Peru are ok and Lima was ok as it had traffic lights but the Peruvian large cities are insane. Their four way intersections are four way ‘gos’. There are no road signs, no rules and no patience. I almost got hit and dropped the bike. By the time I arrived at the hostel I was shaking but alive, just.

ArequipaArequipaArequipaArequipa

ArequipaArequipaArequipaArequipa

ArequipaArequipaArequipaArequipa

Posted in Peru | No Comments »


Skeletons and Fireworks

September 6th, 2009 by sunflowers

The town of Nasca was celebrating their patron saint with a big fair so in the evenings we would go and get fair food for dinner. On the last night we celebrated by going on the ferris wheel and then watched them systematically set fireworks off this bamboo tower which was pretty cool. During the day we went on a tour of the cemetery with skeletons on display and hung out beside the pool at our $12/night hotel.

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NascaNascaNascaNasca

NascaNascaNascaNasca

NascaNascaNascaNasca

Posted in Peru | No Comments »


Nasca Lines

September 5th, 2009 by sunflowers

The ancient peoples of Peru overturned a bunch of rocks in the desert in order to make giant shapes you can only see from the air so that in modern times tourists would flock to this area to pay $50 to go up in tiny airplanes and try and spot the shapes. We were booked to do an early morning flight which is the best time to see the figures but our plane didn’t go up until mid day so it was difficult to see them. Gaylene got airsick from the plane banking all the time and I want to continue the pilot’s license that I started when I was at university. I did get a good aerial shot of the Panamerican highway. We also wen to see a gold processing factory where they danced on boards to get the gold out of the sand and a pottery factory.

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NascaNascaNascaNasca

NascaNascaNascaNasca

Posted in Peru | No Comments »


Sand Boarding

September 4th, 2009 by sunflowers

We did a roller coaster ride dune buggy trip out into the dunes where they gave us snow boards and we tried to board a few dunes standing up but the really big ones we did on our stomachs. Unfortunately I got a bit carried away, waxed my board up too much and ended up being the fastest person down but also bruised up my legs pretty badly.

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HuacachinaHuacachinaHuacachinaHuacachina

Posted in Peru | 2 Comments »


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