Tag Archives: mandatory insurance

Danli to Leon, Sunday, 18 November 2012, Day 138

Gorgeous scenery blue skies and the sun is shining 🙂

A complete screw up day and a complete rooky error at the border that cost me 2 hours and 120km extra round trip Homer Simpson Doh!

Day started fine checked out went round the corner to fill up the bike with petrol and I grabbed some breakfast and then I headed for the border. First day in ages that the sun is actually shining and blue skies and reasonably hot. A nice run to the border, which was not so far away, so I was there in no time. I had left early by my standards and it was Sunday so the border was pretty quite. I pulled over and a young lad came over and asked me if I needed help with the crossing I politely declined and then a few money changers turned up and I said I would talk to them later so they also left me alone.

  • First thing to is get me out of Honduras that will be three dollars very simple
  • Next the bike also no problem done also very simple
  • Guided by a bloke with a clip board who was the mandatory insurance salesman for Nicaragua called Javier to the fumigation area to get my bike sprayed with some gunk or insecticide which was done in no time and also cost nothing
  • Then to get me into Nicaragua so first to immigration very simple this cost 10 dollars and another charge of 3 or 5 dollars I cannot remember and I was cleared for Nicaragua
  • Then the paperwork for the bike this took slightly longer as she kept getting the info on the forms wrong so at first my name was Phillip Amsterdam which she got from my driving licence so we changed that then the manufacture year of the bike she found a number on the registration that said 2002 but had nothing to do with manufacture date and we changed that and the usual confusion about me being English with a Dutch driving licence and bike and a UK passport but as soon as that was all done the bike was through
  • Javier had been showing me through the whole process and then sold me the mandatory insurance for Nicaragua which was 13 dollars.
  • Finally I did a money change with the local changers usual jovial haggling over the rates never except there first offer and see how far you can get to the rate that you know to be correct and anything near that is the rate I will take as I except these guys need to earn a living as well and there is no charge for the deal so they make on anything they can on the difference and I am not here to screw them I just like a fair deal.
  • So I thought I was through so I packed the bike up and I slipped of the foot pegs landing on me knackers as it was still covered in gunk from the fumigation much to the amusement of locals watching football on the television which was in front of the immigration office.
  • So I headed to the gate when I was called over by the police what now I thought they wanted to see my papers the ones I just shown 2 minutes ago so first my driving licence so I gave him this then he demanded my registration papers and then want another dollar for this so I objected and asked what this was for but no real answer and they had a receipt for this but I was pissed of at yet another contribution and or charge for the cops as they have nothing to do with immigration and or importing of a bike. As it was only a buck a paid and I was on my way

Whizzing along beautiful tarmac roads through gorgeous countryside blue skies and the sun was shining. I had a niggling doubt did I get my driving licence back and after 60km the niggling doubt became more real so I decided to stop and do a document check and bugger me my driving licence was not where it should be (I loose stuff all the time so everything has a fixed place and if not there then it could be lost) I checked everywhere but could not find it so my gut feeling was right the bastard copper (he was pretty creepy even before I had lost the licence) had not returned my licence. So I do a U turn and back to the border I had done 60km and this had taken about an hour lovely ride but what was going through my mind what if the licence was not there how was I going to replace it and all the additional complicating issues on mislaying this vital bit of kit.

I got back to the border and I was let back into no mans land to the police post where the 2 guys pretended they knew nothing about the licence but I guessed from the way I was acting I was not in the mood to be fxxxxd around with as I was pretty sure this was the last time I had seen the licence and I was pretty sure it had not been returned to me. Eventually creepy cop went out back and came back with it and the other cop said I dropped it on the road and I should buy them all a drink for finding it. I am going to give them the benefit of the doubt and maybe I had dropped it but deep down I think they where just fxxxxxg with me as I had tried to call there bluff on a bogus charge. I did not buy them a drink as requested but politely thanked them and said adios and did the same 60km stretch I had just done for the 3rd time did I tell you this was a gorgeous bit of tarmac beautiful scenery blue skies and the sun was shining 🙂

Note to self Philly you are total arse always go with your gut feeling and do a complete document check at every stage of the process as there is a lot going on and you are dead in the water without these documents and you just wasted an additional 2 hours and 120km extra km what if it was pissing down and the sun was not shining this little fxxk up could have been a lot worse.

So got to the point I had been 2 hours ago a bit more relaxed but now my petrol planning was all out and it was getting hot and was going to get to Leon a lot later than originally planned. It is lovely now hot run into Leon through mountains across flat plains with volcanoes in the distance I pulled into Leon at about 5pm just before it got dark looking for a hotel Viavia as it was another place I had heard about.

Can you see the volcano in the distance must try and figure out how to take hazy day photos

I found the street and there where 2 other motorcyclist stopped outside Chris and Chloe and they had just checked out the hotel and there was one 3 bed room left so the plan was to share a room with them and they also had safe parking. So again had to drive the bike up a double kerb through a crowded bar and restaurant I stalled it once much to the amusement of the onlookers and the bike was in.

Driving bike through pub photo shamelessly stolen from Chris and Chloe blog http://ccgadventures.wordpress.com

It turned out they had a dorm as well as a double room so the sharing plans changed. Chris and Chloe had ridden up from Argentina so I had dinner with them swopping info and stories which was useful and Alex and Andrea the Romanian couple from last night turned up and joined and later Paul and Dylan the two bikers I met at the brewery turned up so there was 7 bikers telling tall stories and them all doing there best to put Philly of the rest of his trip or that is what it felt like sometimes I am not sure if a lot of these tales are exaggerated for dramatic effect or it going to a bloody hard going from now on in who knows we will no doubt found out. I have said it before there is something about ignorance being bliss, as I would rather not know than worry up front however did pick up a lot of useful information.

Been a long day tomorrow back to the books and Spanish lessons lets see if I can get further than donde es la baños this time 🙂

Palmar Norte to Boquete, Sunday, 2 December 2012, Day 152

Do Enjoy the odd dance event every now and again

      

So another border crossing day last one of Central America Costa Rica to Panama. I leave the hotel it is already hot so it is going to be a sweaty border crossing. Nice run to the border stop for some fuel and breakfast and before you know it I am at the border.

  

I drive right past the Costa Rica Immigration and end up at the Panama side so a quick U turn and I find the Costa Rican immigration which is a tiny place buried at the side of the road no wonder I missed it. I sign myself out and then next the bike no problem and no charge that I can recall and then back again to the Panama Immigration.  Some helpers offer their service again but I politely decline they are also mentioning that I need mandatory insurance here but still not sure as I had mentioned allegedly I have insurance for Panama why would I need more cover. I hit the queue for immigration which was short and I am glad I did as later the line was massive no problem there and popped in Panama Tourist Info place to see about the insurance they seemed to think it was mandatory so for a simple life and it was only 15 bucks I decided I might as well get at as it may speed things up especially with my brilliant Spanish.

i was directed to a hole in the wall round the corner next to huge shopping mall for the insurance I could not find it at first until I realised it was really a hole in the wall I was expecting an office. I got the insurance then headed back to the customs to bring the in bike. The usual standard problems for them in trying to find England and the Netherlands on the Computer. (Reino Unido for UK and Paises Bajos for NL). And additionally the usual problem with the registration papers not having my name on it as this is on two separate other pieces documentation, which are used in NL for transferring title and not part of the registration. She insisted on copies of these so obliged and then the long wait while she 1 finger typed the documentation into the system and in theory I was in and so was the bike. All I needed was to find one last bloke to sign in the bike and I was in except for some fat noisy bloke not sure if he was an official started whitering on about fumigation and I told him that I did not need it for a bike but he was insistent and said if I did not do it I would be turned back at the exit to the border. So I sort my documents out drive to fumigation area and there is no one there except a soldier who waves me through and I pass through the final border check without getting fumigated and I am in Panama. (I pass through a couple more police and customs checks during the coming days no issues so I am guessing I have the full set of cards)

I am heading for a place called Boquete, which is not far so a reasonably short day the border the crossing has taken about, and 1 and half hours and it is an hour later in Panama than in Costa Rica. I get to Boquete at about 3.30 pm drive around looking for somewhere to stay when I spot a place with a few old bikes in the drive so I check that out and yes they have a room cheap in what looks like a shed in the garden but pleasant enough. Place called Pension Topas run by a German who has a Royal Enfield, Triumph and BSA in varying states of repair.

No I am not bloody snowy and no I am not bloody related grrr!

                

Visited a local Dance Event which was nice

Cool Rainbows

More rainbows

Nice enough place unload and settle in then head into town and at the square where there is a dance competition and sort of mini festival going on so settle in and enjoy the surroundings. Do a bit more wandering it is trying to rain but not enough to get you wet or force you indoors and the plus side of this drizzle there are some amazing Rainbows I never seen so think colourful rainbows like these and they where complete arcs which is also something I never experienced so where is the pot of gold then.

I Took loads of photos of the dancing and the rainbows and then back to the hotel and later out for tea spaghetti and some seriously dodgy meatballs I think I going to regret these in the coming days. Another full-varied day I hit the sack tired but content.

  

Cuenca to Canoas de Punta Sal, Wednesday, 26 December 2012,Day 176

Why did the chicken cross the road? So that he did not get squashed by Daisy

Riding with Alex and Andrea today so this is first time this trip except for the run to catch he boat in Panama City that I am riding with someone else. That was riding with a larger group with just the two bikes this should be easier. I am trusting my GPS to get us out of town with no problems and then  to the border into Peru and for once it does not disappoint so I may finally have a map that I can trust 🙂

Hot day and nice run first through the mountains road a mixed bag of good roads to awful lots of landslides so lots of rocks and loose debris on the road and road works where they have ripped the top surface of and left it like that for the time being so reasonable progress but you still had to be wary.

Dusty rough roads

  

We came out of the mountains on to a flat coastal plain next to the Pacific passing through banana plantations on our way to the border. We wanted to fill up before crossing the border, as fuel is cheap as chips in Ecuador but the petrol stations closest to the border where all shut so I am guessing it is to stop folk doing cheap petrol runs from Peru. We drove back about 5km and were able to fill up there we adversely jumped a huge queue which I did not see as I pulled into the station so a bit of laugh with the attendant and the soldier which where present at all the petrol stations near the border and then onto the border.

banana anyone?

First to the Aduana in Ecuador to check the bikes out we nearly missed this as it was not clearly marked and here we met the Columbian Bogotá V-strom club who were with about 10 bikes or so and we where behind them in all of the queues crossing the border which slowed us up a bit

Then to immigration for me which was in the same building so you queued to exit Ecuador and the right next to that the queue to enter Peru. Fortunately very few people so this part went quite quickly and the onto the Peruvian Aduana. Where we ended up behind the large group of Columbian Bogota V-strom club again.

Philly and Daisy Fan club waving us out of Ecuador

This is where we heard about mandatory insurance for Peru first time I heard of this as this was not one of the countries on my list that I needed to buy extra insurance as in theory this was covered in my total central and south America insurance so I was planning to bluff my way through this one and they did not ask for it but Alex had to pay 35USD for a months insurance. My problem was that they had put my Nationality down as Ireland again and my VIN number was incorrect so asked them to correct it but they refused they just crossed it out so I asked for a signature on the changes they got all pissy and so did I as I was hot tired and sweaty but there is no use in me getting angry as they have all the cards So the guy rips up my paper work and give me a blank form which I have to fill in by hand and this time with the right information. So with a bit of help from my new Columbian friends I had the paperwork completed and written in my bad handwriting but I had all the stamps and signatures on it so me and Daisy are allowed into yet another new country Peru wow we are really ticking them of the list 🙂

This had all taken about 2 hours and it just gone 4pm so we made tracks for Mancora which was about 129km away but we had already figured we where not going to make it before it got dark so we started stopping at all the beach type resorts places asking for rooms. This is where Andrea was useful we would  pull up and she would jump of and go in and check the prices and say yay or nay and if nay we would roll on the next one. She was also had been the official photographer for the day so loads of photos taken of Philly and Daisy on the move.

Alex & Andreas Ecuador Photos

Alex & Andreas Peru Photos

Not much luck on finding something as it is very expensive along this coast and when we did one last try before we where going to try again to get to Mancora where we knew there were cheaper options.

We had a bungalow on the beach 10USD each and they kept the kitchen open for us so fried fish and rice on the beach watching the sun go down with a mad kitten for company. Perfect I could not ask for much more even debating that it is so nice here we may have a rest day here tomorrow and that is awfully tempting as I have had a tough couple of days.

Nice here may stay another day