Monday, 28 October 2013

The New Arrival

Well she has arrived! The bike that will carry me around the world over 15 months!

Saturday morning and I decided to walk the mile from my house to Colwyn Bay Motorcycles where my bike was waiting for me. Prepped and ready to go.
As I get nearer I feel the excitement building at the thought of us getting acquainted! I had chosen the bike I was going to be spending the next 15 months with and, forsaking all others, it would just be me and her for better or for worse! There was no going back now. It felt amazing!

Wednesday, 9 October 2013

Chewing the Coca at 4200 meters

Having got over the novelty of consuming Guinea Pig, Alpaca and Pisco Sour it was time to move on to headier heights. Don't get me wrong, I highly recommend Pisco Sour. It cures most ailments. So far it has cured a bad back, headaches, stomach cramps and tiredness! Peruvian Penicillin! Guinea Pig? I can take it or leave it.

Our guide has been chewing Coca leaves throughout the trip and now after using all my energy to climb a rocky track to 4200 meters and faced with a trek on foot to the bottom of the glacier it seemed appropriate to try chewing the coca (the alkaloid contents of coca leaves is low and so chewing the leaves does not produce the same intense high as with cocaine). A ritual not dissimilar to chewing tobacco. You grab a handful of leaves, stick it in your cheek,  add a little flavoring (not sure what it was. The details were slightly lost in translation), then chew for up to 2 hours. It tastes foul but it certainly does lift your energy levels. Perfectly legal of course and commonly practiced by the locals. The only problem was deciding how much I was being affected by the altitude and how much by the coca. For this reason, after half an hour of climbing, chewing and general lightheadedness I decided the coca had to go.