Monday, April 2, 2018

They're Not Llamas - 24 March 2018

24 March 2018 – I woke up and looked out the window. The cars and my motorcycle had a nice coating of frost on them. I went and ate breakfast. I saw a couple of cats setting outside shivering away. When I finished breakfast, I brought two small cubes of butter out for each of them. I hope it helped warm them up some. I packed my motorcycle and put on my rain suit just for warmth. I had Mary make a reservation for the hotel I will stay in again tonight.

I had a ferry ride and one more border crossing. I then was back in Argentina. There were six other motorcycle riders like myself on the ferry. Three from Argentina, Two from Nicaragua, one from California, and myself. You had to pay a fee to make the ferry crossing and I was checked to make sure I had the current receipt. I was thinking if you saved your earlier slip, you could flash it and not have to pay the fee. Well, had I done that I would have been caught because the ferry dude actually checked the date and time on my receipt. I was glad I didn’t pull a fast one and then get caught.

I went thru another border and had an opportunity to talk to the guy from California. He was a school teacher who taught History. He didn’t say what grade level. He was traveling with the Australian couple who lived in Nicaragua. While we were talking my helmet fell off my seat to the ground. Thankfully it didn’t scratch up the face shield.

I walked in to Customs and Immigration and watched the different windows the other motorcycle riders went to. That way I would know where to go without a big hassle. I could flow smoothly through with no problems. It was one of my best border crossing I ever had. Not a lot of questions and everything went smoothly. The California guy had a dual citizenship. His parents were from Argentina and he was born in California. He had the best of two worlds. Anyway, they left and I had to spend more time in line waiting. I eventually finished up and left.

I was following this car thru the border and they were dragging butt. I was following them knowing they would speed up and be gone. They started speeding up and I noticed my visor was flapping in the wind. I immediately pulled over, took my helmet off and saw that the plastic cap holding my visor hinge together was missing. I didn’t know if it came lose when my helmet fell to the ground or came loose when I flipped down my sun visor in the helmet. I turned around and drove slowly down the road scanning back and forth looking for any sign of the cap. I rode about 500 Yards / 500 Meters and there it lay on the centerline and nobody as of yet has run over it. Thank God. I reached down to the pavement to pick up that cap.  Let me tell you that’s a stretch when you’re on a KLR 650. If it was 1/2 Inch / 1 Centimeter farther away I would never have been able to pick it up. I moved off to the shoulder of the road and re-installed the cap. My visor was now back functioning as normal. Let me tell you when I found it I was about on my knees thanking God in the middle of that highway. Again, my helmet would have been worthless without my visor. I need it to protect my glasses.

I’m now off to Rio Gallegos, Argentina to my hotel. I saw a lot of the Emu’s and Llama’s that I had seen on my way to Ushuaia. I actually learned that I have been calling these critters by the wrong name.  The Llamas are actually Guanacos, and the Emus are Rheas.I saw another Guanaco leap a 5-foot fence again. It’s amazing how graceful that big critter does that.

Finding my hotel was uneventful and the price of the room was cheaper than the first time I stayed there. When I arrived, I was surprised they had received my reservation. Mary said she was having problems sending the e-mail to make the reservations. Everything went smoothly there. I told them I would be staying two days. I unpacked my bike, then oiled and adjusted the chain. I would really like to wash my motorcycle. The roads are full of dirt and when they get wet, this dirt and water really mess up your motorcycle. If you get caught behind a vehicle this road spray will cover you and your motorcycle with this mud / dirt. It’s a mess.

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