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Day 383 – 26th December 09

Posted by TravellingStrom on December 26, 2009

Saturday – La Paz, Bolivia

Some better news today, all is not lost

Check out the way I have to get power to the laptop, the normal AUS plug is 3 pins, which I have a converter to 3 pin US, then after that because most power points down here only have 2 pins,(no earth) I have to use a 3 – 2 pin adapter and then I find here in Bolivia they use the Euro pin system so I have to add another converter, crazy, I need a jack under all that in case it falls out 🙂

Todays jobs are to sort out tyres and hopefully get my GPS fixed. I had a business card of a Suzuki shop and took a cab there, more fool me, it was just around the corner!!! Oh well, as it turns out he had the Pirelli cattle dog but could not get me the MT 60 tyres in there that fitted my bike, bummer, he only had smaller ones. He gave me an address of the main Suzuki dealer and I took another cab over there, but it was closed until Monday, bloody xmas holidays! Oh well, the next step was to find an area that the hotel people had identified where I could get electronic repairs done, so I took the same cab there, another waste of time as this was a supermarket for food and stuff to buy, not get repaired 😦 It was looking like a waste of time, but the nice lady there told me of another area of town where there were heaps of shops all dealing in this stuff, so in for a penny etc, another cab to the market area. Here I found a repairer and after a bit of discussion, he said he would open it up and drill up from below and solder a new pin in the hole, come back in an hour 🙂

So, I headed off and looked around the market area, once again these markets are set out in a pattern with all the stalls in one area selling the same stuff, I just cannot get over the idea, loco 😆 There was a line up outside the gas swap truck, I did not see any money change hands here, so it may be free handouts? But, some of the stuff I saw was real weird, it looked like dried up birds, but I have since found out they are Llama foetus’s and are used in a medicinal way, and apparently I should not have taken a photo as it will have sucked all the goodness out of it, so don’t buy from this stall eh 🙂

After a basically crap lunch of chook and rice,(I am getting sick of this) I went back to the repairer and found he could not access that section of the unit. So, we looked at what he had and in the end did the following, he used the sprung loaded contact from the charger base of a mobile phone. He had a large safety pin which was the correct size to fit in the holes in the GPS lead, he then soldered the spring loaded contact onto the pin and this was then pushed into the hole in the lead, it looked like it should work and I got him to make another for the other lead attached to the bike 🙂

This whole job cost me $30 BoBs,(Bolivian Boliviaros)which is about $5 and it took him about two hours all up, cheap as chips. The good news is that when I got back to the hotel, both leads worked fine, so I am a happy chappie 🙂 It was just starting to rain so I grabbed a cab and just as we moved off, a hail storm hit, this was violent and spectacular, the streets were white and rivers were flowing, I am glad I was in a cab and not outside, although some of the street sellers still had a smile 🙂

After getting back to the hotel the next little job was my nonexistent back brakes. The reservoir was a bit low and it was a bit difficult to add fluid without spilling it as the rear rack system meant I could not remove the side panel. It was also hard to bleed with one person, but in the end I managed to get the system working again properly, so that was a relief 🙂

I noticed the Ural in the car park so that meant Mike and Alana had turned up and we all met up a bit later for a group dinner. I will say at this point, I am no longer in favour of group dinners as getting people together at one time and then selecting a suitable location for everyone takes too much time. It was gone 8pm by the time we were sat down and ordered!!!

One of the things I have so far come to hate about Bolivia is that they will not serve you your drink unless the meal is there. I prefer to have a beer or two then have a feed, but every time I order a beer, it never turns up until the food arrives, sometimes an hour later and no matter how much I bitch and whinge, it seldom helps. Lucky for me this time I am sitting next Alana who speaks fluent Spanish and she told the server we want the beer NOW, not later and this seemed to work. I will have to learn more Spanish I think to fix this problem 🙂 The food when it turned up was fantastic, beef steak and vegies, shame about the service eh!

Now, during the meal we discussed the Road of Death, or Carraterra de la Morte, which was always a big draw card for me in Bolivia and in fact the only reason I was here. It has been raining a lot, so I had a bit of apprehension about a slippery dirt road with 2km drop offs and no guard rails. But, we all agreed for an 8am pegs down, ride to the dirt road turn off and see what it looks like and make a decision then. The rest of the night after dinner was blogging and an early night as well, I need to be rested for the next day, especially with a dodgy tyre. On that note, the others tyres were supposed to be at the airport but would need to be picked up Monday, so things were happening, although a bit slower than anticipated.

Day – 0 miles and 0 km
Trip – 47,460 miles and 76,379 km



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8 Responses to “Day 383 – 26th December 09”

  1. Bob Sullivan said

    Try this: Quero la cerveza ahora antes de la comida.
    If pronunciation is a problem write it on a card and show the waiter (assuming they can read).

  2. ybg said


    Christmas dinners are supposed to be dysfunctional. That’s why they are so memorable. 😉

  3. Jack Bowen said

    Hello TS. I know it is early but I am on vacation and have spotty internet so I will say it today… Happy New Year !! Just don’t read this till later.

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