Now that I’m rounding up the last week or so of cycling across South America I feel it’s safe to talk about the sort of weather I’ve had. Call me superstitious but I don’t like to test fate by saying prematurely that the weather has been great.
But the weather has been great! Before I left I was worried not only about the likelihood of constant rain (as Bolivia was suffering its heaviest rain for years), but also the high chance of consistent head winds. I really didn’t know what the predominate wind direction was across the continent but felt sure that whatever way I was going the wind would be blowing the other way.
|Dont Laugh. That Body has Suffered. Sitting in a Cold Shower.|
Taking in 2Ltrs of Medicine.
Well Sth America has been good to me. Except for the snow storms crossing the Andes (and let’s face it you can’t expect toasty nice-ites at that altitude) I have been blessed with light winds and sun, sun, sun. In fact so much sun that my face was peeling and my lips were bleeding. So much sun that the locals thought I was a homeless man and little kids told me I should stop drinking booze and get a job. Well I think that is what they were trying to say. It’s funny really I bought a couple of beers because it was the only shop selling anything on Easter day and then these kids started jabbering on about me drinking it. Being kids of course I just ignored them until they started to really annoy me. I then told them that being the King of New Zealand I was entitled to drink beer in any country I chose except Australia, because my rule doesn’t extend there.
I thought later that they may have been saying that because it was Easter I wasn’t allowed by Brazilian law to drink beer. Or maybe Gods law on Easter forbid it. Well I don’t believe in God and I had a stamp from the nice Brazilian customs girl saying I was welcome in Brazil and could get as pissed as a fart as long as I continued to ride on the right hand side of the road.
The only other explanation, since I had bought the beer from a young girl herself, was that it was indeed not a shop and was actually her father’s beer fridge. This could have been the case as homes and shops in the country do look at times similar and having no language I have got into the habit of going straight to the fridge and grabbing what I want.
Anyway I digress and it makes me thirsty talking about it. So my body has taken a hammering from the sun, a bit of dehydration and early stomach problems either brought on by the altitude or buggy food.
What I really like about the heat which is constantly hitting 33C is the ability I have to just wash my cycle gear after riding each day and then without wringing it out just hang it up. If it’s not dry by morning it doesn’t matter you just put it on wet. So refreshing. The other thing I love is being able to get in virtually cold showers and just loving the coolness after a day dripping sweat all over your top tube. A day where your Brooks saddle is working like a little Trojan to absorb all that bum sweat. Imagine sliding all over a synthetic seat in these conditions.
O’ and ice-cream and coke never tasted so good.
What I hate about this climate is needing another cold shower 10 minutes after your first because you feel all hot and sticky again. I hate not being able to eat chocolate because quite frankly what’s the point in eating sticky chocolate. I love the coffee in Brazil, but to me a coffee is much nicer when its 12degrees C and not 32degrees C.
I have been caught in the odd tropical shower which was very pleasant especially with mudguards as you don’t have to worry about road crap. But managed to out-run a couple of really heavy thunderstorms. I feel now sitting in my 30degree C room that the thunderstorms would have been really nice to ride through as well, but I did it for my Mercian. I thought he’d suffered enough on this leg of the trip and I didn’t want all the drivetrain and bearings getting a total water blasting.
So I will enjoy my final week near the equator and drink cold stuff. But I have checked the temperature in Europe. Being spring there, it doesn’t look too hot. Boy am I looking forward to ‘not so hot’
Some people are never happy are they?