It was another 100km to get to Juliaca, where we would stay with Geovanni on Warmshowers, and HJ and I would part ways. The ride started with a gentle climb, then a lovely downhill and was flat nearly the rest of the way. I only really stopped for breakfast, and to wait for HJ to catch up at various parts. The ride was less pretty than the day before, and the last 20km in particular was not fun as it was a return to busy roads with stupid drivers who think that overtaking right into a cyclist
To get to La Paz, it was another bus. The road is 200km just like the road to Oruro and so just as unappealing to ride, especially as there is nearly always a headwind and while they’re building a new road, the old road has a very narrow shoulder and plenty of traffic passing by on a remarkably straight road – no thanks. Our bus was meant to leave at 11:30, but at noon we were still waiting near the terminal waiting for more passengers. This didn’t bother me too much, but plenty
Thankfully the hard work of getting to Alberdi paid off as Julie proved a great hostess, showing me around and introducing me to plenty of people. She’s been in Alberdi for almost a year and so has a bit of a firmer idea of what she’s doing than Nora. She had made lots of amazing connections, and I was shown around to lots of them and got to hear about life in what somehow feels a little less isolated when you’re actually there, just because of it’s access across the river
My plan to ride down to Chui hit into my laziness. There was 240km to the border, and having stayed until the Saturday morning cos of how lovely Duda’s family was – with my visa expiring on the Sunday – that would be doable, but with a strong headwind forecast for the whole weekend it sounded like a pretty miserable ride through flat fields with nothing to see.
We were up before 6, so they could leave early, and because the bus would leave at 7am. I’d been up trying to get
I was asked when I arrived in Rio Grande how long I’d be staying, but wasn’t sure. Duda however seemed to know and told everyone that I’d stay for the whole week, until he would travel to Gramado with his aunt Silvia, uncle Eduardo and cousin Gui. That would just about work, but leave things a little tight for getting out of the country in time before my visa expired.
My main goal was to get things organised. I had a sleeping pad that had once again started leaking, too many t-shirts