Back on the road again

Trip Start Oct 16, 2012
Trip End Apr 20, 2013

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Flag of Peru  , Piura,
Thursday, December 27, 2012

As we packed up our tent again from our second campsite in Mancora, which had slightly better facilities i.e. running water, I was feeling ill. We joked that I was nervous about getting back on the road or that I was looking for an excuse to stay and within an hour I would be on a sun lounger on the beach drinking a cocktail. As it didn't seem like much, I just had a crampy tummy we decided to stick with the plan and move on.

We slowly got everything re-packed up and prepared to enter the desert again. Our map suggested that there was very little on the way to Piura, which is 200km away, and would take two days for us to cross. We anticipated that there would be a couple of little villages here and there but were not convinced that they would definitely have water available for us. Therefore we set off after the Christmas break, with 6 litres of water extra per person and quite a bit more food each too. I felt like my bike had seriously overeaten over Christmas and had gained lots of weight.

It felt good to be back on the road and starting another adventure into the unknown for the day. The road was good, the traffic was quiet but the sun was scorching. It had felt perfectly pleasant when we were on the beach and had the sea, the umbrella covered sun lounger or the fan ventilated bedroom to retire to but now it was baking. Again, there was no shade to be seen. We cycled through a sand and cactus covered valley, which only had a road that looked like a black desert snake winding its way through the sand.

We came to a few small hills, which took a bit of time to ascend, as I was feeling weak and tired. My belly cramps had kicked up a notch and I was emptying its contents on the side of the road.  Unfortunately we were 20km out of town when we realised that we should have stayed in Mancora. We had no choice but to keep plodding on. Well, I guess that we could've easily flagged a truck down and asked them for a lift or we could've pitched our tent where we were and called it a day but neither of those options would've helped me much in the long run. I knew that I just had to ride out the sickness and it would pass. We continued through the desert and came across a big oilfield, with oil pumps set sporadically across the open valley. Many of them were still and appeared abandoned and Kory tells me that they were a smaller, older style. He seemed to enjoy taking about 100 photos of the oilwells and pumps, and would race back and forth to capture the beauty of the area, which I concentrated on just moving forwards.

We stopped at a small town, with a petrol station and not much else.  Thankfully the petrol station had a small dining area and they were happy to whip kory up a chicken sandwich. When it arrived, it was so small we both burst out laughing! It was tiny, as he held it in one hand, and ate it in two bites. I wasn't feeling up to eating so just had some Sprite, for an easy sugar boost.

Once we set off again, the wind had whipped up again and was intent on making the rest of our afternoon difficult. It was happy to pummel us from any direction but seemed to refuse to hit our backs and help us along. This seems to be the running trend that it is relatively calm in the morning and then by about 1pm the wind is strong and keeps up all afternoon and evening until the night.

We kept going though and I was starting to feel a bit better after having something to drink. We had one long hill climb, which took us up on to a plateau that had a small amount of trees, but they were quite bristley looking, without any leaves, so still didn't provide any shade for us to rest under.

We arrived at a turnoff to a city, which we had not been intending to visit, but due to me feeling rough, we stopped at the intersection and reviewed our options. We could cycle at least 10km in the wrong direction and have a bed for the night or we could wild camp somewhere, which would mean less cycling but no shower or toilet. As we stood there we saw a little restaurant on the side of the road and decided to pop in for a drink to decide what to do. As we drank our drinks, Kory noticed that they had an area out the back that would be perfect to camp in. So, we asked the manager if it would be possible to camp in their back yard area, which conveniently had an outdoor toilet and shower. She almost bit our hands off saying “yes, yes” and showing us the best spot to set up our tent.

The restaurant stayed open all evening and was a popular stop for the truckers. I managed to eat some fried fish and salad, as it was all that she had available in the evening, and thankfully the cat helped me out with anything that I couldn't stomach. Their daughter was delighted to chat to us, and chatted ten to the dozen in Spanish. We managed to hold down a slight conversation, and learnt that she is 4 and goes to school and at school she learns English, so was more than happy to count on my fingers in English and tell me all the animals she knows. We were the best entertainment she had (other than terrorising the cat), in their tiny restaurant/house, and she enjoyed giving our tent a once over two with her torch.
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Karen on

Haha funny sandwich! How much did that one cost ya? looks pretty dry! Keep up the great work!

gemandkory on

It cost $1, so not exactly cheap and it was TINY!!! Kory said it tasted ok, and we had some boiled eggs that we also put into it.

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