At 07:30 this morning, I was all ready to go and so were Ken and Ben Kriederman, the 2 American BMW riders. We decided to ride together to Puno and maybe further. After breakfast the hotel manager showed us a route to bypass Cusco. We had no need to visit Cusco again; it would only cost a lot of time to find our way through the city.
The weather was sunny and the road was dry. We made excellent progress. After a couple of hours, Ben pointed to the side of my bike. The rain cover of the right saddle bag had come lose by the wind and melted partly by the exhaust muffler. When I tried to tear it off, I ripped a tear in the bag itself.
Fortunately I was not without Duct tape, so the bag was repaired swiftly.
After a bite to eat, Ben suggested I’d ride in front. When riding last, one always goes faster, in order to keep up. Now that I rode up front, I kept the same speed, but for the other 2 that was faster than before. I was “hauling ass”, as Ben put it. I couldn’t really help it: the road was in excellent shape and the curves were long. It was a joy to ride there.
The altitude got higher and higher. The clouds got darker and darker.
We tried to out-run the rain, but it caught up with us just before Juliacca, the last big town before Puno.
Of all the Peruvian places I’ve seen so far, this is the filthiest and crappiest shit hole by a long shot.
We finally made it out of there and when we reached Puno at the Titicaca Lake, it stopped raining.
Looking for a hostel where we could park the bikes, we saw 3 other BMW motorcycles parked. Ken and Ben recognised the Colombians, Eduardo, Fernando and Daniel who owned the bikes, from the dealership in Bogota where they had their bikes serviced. The 6 of us had lunch. One of the Colombians was being hailed to look at the bikes. He came back with one of my saddle bags. The other was cut off and stolen……
That, of course did not amuse me at all… The stolen saddle bag (that I fixed earlier today with Duct tape) contained a few tools, a pair of shoes, an air compressor, tie raps, Duct tape and oil to lube my chain. The bag they left, contained the more valuable stuff.
All together we decided to search for a safe hostel. Thanks to Eduardo, we found one, where we all could park our bikes. We changed quickly and hurried over to the lake to catch a boat to the floating islands of Lake Titicaca. They consist of layers and layers of reed (thatch) and on each island live a maximum of 5 families.
After this interesting excursion we had a simple meal for diner and had lots of fun. Tomorrow we plan to go to Arequipa, or maybe even Tacna, which is the last town before the border with Chile.