T – I was up at dawns own crack today. I wanted to fix Rosies clutch and Mabels leak before we started to tackle the mountains to the south east of us. It wasn’t long and I had Rosie keeled over on her side, her old innards ripped out and her new ones chucked back in. I had the whole thing done and dusted in about 20 minutes. Similarly Mabels stator was out and hanging by its wires and her new oil seal being jammed into place with every else that looked like a oil seal of some type receiving a good splash of RTV silicone. Hopefully both bikes will be back to their usual slipless, dripless selves again for a while.
Channy was soon up and we packed up our bikes, checked our oils and headed for San Jose. We need to get our yellow fever injections and WHO certifications otherwise we may not be allowed to go back home! It was going to be a long day and our intended route was about 260 kms of mountains and lakes and city traffic.
C – It was very exciting to get on Rosie and be able to ride up hills without dropping back to third because of her slipping clutch. It was wonderful to be zipping back in front of Todd and Mabel each time we ventured up a hill! I also had my overtaking power back, so it was nice to be able to overtake the slow cars and trucks again.
T – We were stuck on the Pan Am highway for a while but soon we were turning off onto the backroads. We climbed a little and then started zipping down hills and around sharp little bends. We miss this kind of riding! There was a few cars on the road and even on our little slow bikes we eventually ended up stuck behind traffic. This was to become the norm for us from this point on. We would pass a car, or truck and then catch up to another, and another, and another.
The lake we skirted around was absolutely gorgeous and had we not been intent on getting into the city today we would have stopped and camped at one of the free camps listed on iOverlander.
We were soon spat out on a super busy freeway type deal and after paying a 10c toll each we immediately were stuck in a huge traffic jam. It went for miles. We sat in the line for quite some time and it took us 40 minutes to do just one kilometer. Then I saw an opening and twisting Mabels throttle wide open we roared into the closing gap in the traffic and started forcing our way to the front. Sitting in the heat behind a bus belching out fat diesel fumes was no longer fun. We scraped past bumpers, squeezed down drains, and raced through fenced off roadworks and eventually we were free, back into clear traffic again. It was actually fun to be riding so aggressively.
C – The traffic was absolutely nuts, with Todd commenting that it seemed to be busier than our ride through the streets of Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam. There were cars, buses, trucks, motorbikes, cyclists and pedestrians all vying for the same space of road. Just insanity. We passed so many accidents and it was easy to see why – it was every vehicle and person for him or herself.
T – By the time we hit the city it was 4pm and it was a snarling angry mess of hot cars, big accidents and traffic jams. We ducked and dodge and weaved and ran red lights, we needed to get to the hospital before 5pm come hell or high water. We made it there at 4:35pm.
In no time at all I had a 17 inch long 2 inch wide needle gouging its way through the sinew and bone in my arm to deliver an icey cold shot of live yellow fever into my system. I do not like needles. No I don’t.
C – The vaccination was simple and painless… except for the cost of course! But its all worth it in the end. I do not need yellow fever to add my travel experiences!!
T – We couldn’t get our certificate for the injection tonight so we decided to find a cheap hotel in the dodgey part of town for the night. The cheap hotel was a love motel and they happily relieved us of $32 for a basic, ugly little room that had tiny little towels, with free secure parking for our bikes. The room was worth maybe $10, max, but it was dark and we didn’t want to be wandering the streets of the city for too long.
We found a cheap place for food nearby and then it was time for a movie and sleep. Tomorrow we were going to go and meet up with a Canadian guy who lives in Costa Rica but we have to get to Panama and get the shipping for our bikes organised. So we will head for the border to Panama. Our last Central American crossing.