Madaru moto - motorbike adventures in South America 

DAYS 14 to 21. When I got back to Sunny Days I found the hostel was fully booked; no problem, there was a room available just 1 block away, at an equally clean and welcoming hostel, "The End of the Trail". I left my bike and bags at Sunny days and walked over to The End of the Trail:

It was run by an American called Franklin, a friendly guy who told me his stepfather, an Englishman by the name of Tony Costello, once worked for Natalie Wood. Franklin was scrupulously clean, I liked the bathroom in his hostel because the blue tile work was so perfect. He hung plastic bags of water in some places, with a coin inside, he said it scares off flying insects who see them as spider webs. You can see one hanging under the green framed window in the photo below. I have to say, there were very few flies and mosquitoes at "The End of the Trail"


Franklin comes from California and loves surfing... that's one reason why he likes Arica. He told me "The Beach Boys wrote great music, but man, they were not real surfers". I stayed with Franklin for 2 days - we talked a lot about history - a subject he liked, as you can see by the type of books he has lying around.


When I moved back to Sunny Days I got  my bags out of the luggage storage room, and weighed them - the weight has crept up a bit - its now 60kgs. 


I started to be concerned a little when I could not locate my pouch with my two credit cards and a stash of cash. Concern became panic when after three thorough searches, I could not find them. Also, I noted, my cellphone and gorilla-grip tripod was missing... to cut a long story short, I thought I had been robbed. But after telephoning my bank and getting my cards cancelled, I found them in my baggage! But now I had no access to my money... Ross suggested I use Western Union to get some emergency funds sent over. Which I did, after a four day wait, as my father was on vacation and unreachable. 

I used the spare time to explore more of Arica. Here are the Chilean police, they ride big boxer BMWs.


Some others ride trail bikes:


I spent a full day re-wiring some of the electrical add-ons fitted to Atwakey. 


This is the inside of the front electrical box. One person asked me if it was for delivering cakes! The blue gadget with 32.8 displayed is a digital logging thermometer. I have it set to record the temperature several times an hour, just for interest's sake. 


And this is the inside of the rear top-box. Although I can now charge 10 AA batteries and have USB outlet as well, my ultimate aim is to have some sort of supplementary battery from which I can run my laptop when I'm camping. I have more work to do here.

I also added another broomstick, donated by Ross, and mounted this geared 12v motor. It runs at 2 revs per minute, I want to experiment with a camera  mounted on it


My left foot has fully recovered, but now my right foot is not the best after scratching insect bites too vigorously: 


This is how they sell olives in Arica - from plastic drums by the kilo.

I had a haircut with the friendly barber at this hair salon, during which a man barged in, pointed to the ground, and said "Aqui Estoy!" ("I'm right here!"). The barber replied "Aqui Estoy!" and the intruder replied the same words, back and forth a few times before walking off with both men laughing. I didn't know what it was all about until I walked out and saw the name of the shop was "Aqui Estoy" :



My  el cheapo helmet visor, already almost opaque with scratches, gave up the ghost:


Scoruing Arica's bike shops, I found no replacement visors or even goggles that would fit. A pair of 3M industrial safety glasses is my temporary fix:


I saw this notice at the bus terminal. Its a list of names of young men detailing when and where they have to report for compulsory military service.

The  aforementioned landmines problem has forced the Dakar rally to change its route:

First time I have ever had a Siamese cucumber:

Ever wondered what Great Sandy Desert is in Spanish? This globe in an Arica shop shows it as Gran Desierto de Arena.... which goes a long way towards explaining the Latin origin of the the English word 'arena' - when you remember the Roman gladiators fought in the arena... literally 'in the sand'.


In a bookshop is a reminder of one of Arica's distasters



After a lot of telephone calls homes, I was able to arrange a money transfer of $1000 to my father, who then sent me the same amount via Western Union. This should suffice me until the replacement credit cards come through. Finally I can hit the road again!
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