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herbert and i

Into the Southern Hemisphere

ECUADOR | Thursday, 28 August 2008 | Views [522] | Comments [3]

After spending two days relaxing and wandering around the town, it was time to move on. The road south is in great condition and i made good time. The scenery changed from the rolling hills to tall mountains cloud hiding the tops, along with this came a drastic drop in temprature. Light drizzle was falling, enough to make the roads slick and my life uncomfortable my scratched visor making it difficult to see, wiping it only made it worse. In the mean time i had crossed the Equator without even realising. I rode into Quito early afternoon and promptly got lost, yes i know. I found myself in a rough Barrio North of the city. I stopped to ask directions and was mobbed by a gang of street toughs. They were very friendly and wanted to know about Australia. They then took me to lunch for a fantastic meal, all the while Herbert had his own personal guard. I left for the old town after lots of different directions and finally made it to the Hotel Grand, Grand in name only i must say.

The old Quito is a gem, street after street of colonial biuldings, cathedrals and churches. Really wonderful but the crowds were getting to me. I was ready for some small town visiting and a break from crowds for a while. I decided to avoid the coast for the more tranquil highlands and made for Riobamba. While stopping for fuel i was approached by a young chap who happened to own a hotel in Riobamba, so that teed up i headed for the scenic loop around the 3 Volcanoes  names will be updated. The views were obscured by low cloud, oh well, i was assured i would get views from the hotel terrazza. What views, partly covered volcanic peaks, snow clad tops and cloud formations as spectacular as the mountains themselves. Tomorrow i leave for Quenca and more volcanoes and history. Travelling south the following day the riding was great, good roads winding to the tops of the Cordillera and following the ridgelines. Little farms dotting the steep slopes in neat rows and always green. Then it went bad, the road deteriorating to a deep gravel mess. Steep rises and descents making the road treacherous. Then deep sand stretches where water had washed sand down the hills and onto the road. Trucks and cars in front raising great clouds of dust making it impossible to see the potholes. After reaching Biblian a small hill town i decided to stop for the night. A hotel was found and Herbert bumped up two steps into the lounge room of the hotel owner, i am glad that no leaks have sprung up. A wander around town and i came across a tiny restaurant in the bowels of a biulding run by an Ecuadorian chef trained in an Italian restaurant in New Jersey. We spoke for hours and i was given a great pasta and lots of beer, then taken to his home to meet the family. With my spirits raised i made my way to Cuenca about 1 hour away. Quenca deserves a story on its own.

Comments

1

Found "you" on our atlas. Wow! What an adventure. The Aboriginals in Far North Queensland say GUBUN GUBUN GALING - which means safe journey. So far so good, may it continue. Our love. Paul & Elaine

  Elaine and Paul Aug 29, 2008 9:06 AM

2

I'm trying to imagine Herbert with his personal bodyguards...he's come a long way since sitting in your garage (all nice and clean) in Bentleigh! Go Tony, by the way I think Collingwood might be in the top 8...confirm this please Tina?? Annette xxx

  Annette Edwards Aug 31, 2008 3:15 PM

3

Hi Tony,

+ Annette, Collingwood is in the top 8. One week to go and Lea and I are off for our trip.

Stay Safe

  Tina Conde Sep 2, 2008 11:16 PM

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