Tag Archives: toll booths

Cali to Pasto, Thursday, 20 December 2012, Day 170

Guess I am sort of on the right road

Trying to remember this day as it was another long day I got out of Cali and headed into the hills. Daisy feeling good after the TLC she had received twisty roads with lots of slow moving traffic that needed to be past on blind corners and brows of hills you have got to be brave here or you will not get anywhere far fast but you can also be to brave as I past a crowd looking down a huge crevice where something had gone through the barrier I could not see what it was but I did not hang around to long to find out either.

Still no idea what had gone through the barrier

Later in the day it started to rain so that slowed the pace down as the roads turned greasy and it was getting late again. Remember I mentioned that there are toll roads here but next to each is a small track for motorcyclist to go through for free. So far I had managed to squeeze through with my luggage but today there was one it was late it was wet I was tired and I took a chunk out of the wall as I wet through I just tapped it but it put the bike into a bit of a wobble so that toll booth was not taken very graciously. I found out later others had issues with this toll booth as well Fred had hit it like I did but he smashed his luggage so bad that it needed repairs so I guess I was lucky but note to self check fittings and if it look like its to narrow slow down to check 🙂


Moody weather today


I pulled into town just as it was getting dark knackered I had a vague idea of a place to stay when the police stopped me. A big lecture about no bikes allowed on the square today or something like that but I do not understand Spanish when it comes to rozzers so feign ignorance but she keeps whitering on I had just let a pedestrian cross the road maybe that is what is upsetting her. She tells me to pull over by another copper so I do this and sit there like a lemon. The other cop is giving a ticket to another motorcyclist and I try and get his attention and he asks me what do I want? I point at the other cop and he shakes his head and tells me to bugger of so I do that very promptly. I turn around the corner pull over and get out my lonely planet, as I still need somewhere to stay. I have stopped outside a shoe shop and the bloke there asks me can he help and I say yes I am looking for a hotel and can he point me in the right direction. He gives me a funny look and points behind me and hey presto there is a hotel and it’s the one I was aiming for there are two doorman who have seemingly were also trying to get my attention as well god I am frazzled. So I pull into there car park thinking this is a bit posh as the bloke offers to carry all my kit to the front desk. It is a bit of a choker when I ask for the price of the room so when I have picked myself of the floor the negotiations began which involved getting the Manager. I managed to half the original price but still bloody expensive oh well a bit of posh never killed anyone so I agreed the price and went and got the rest of the kit of the bike which like I said was carried to the room by a bell boy. I get cleaned up and go in search for food but I am not staying out long at the rate I am paying then back to the room and watching the goggle box and I have a hot water bottle how posh is that 🙂

Note to self check prices of other folks recommendations as they may have a slightly different budget than the one you are travelling on but it was nice  bit of posh and it’s a lot cooler here so ideal for me who likes it cold when I am sleeping nice and cuddly under the blankets.

Cascavel to Ourinhos, Saturday, 9 March 2013,Day 249

Nice Country Scene

Nice run today no idea where I am only a vague idea where I am heading that being Rio de Janeiro. I covered no distance yesterday so I decided a big mileage and long days in the saddle should get me there in couple of days. Its was bleeding hot again so another day being a hot sweaty dribbley mess in the saddle.  The main roads all seem to be toll roads and unlike some countries in South America you have to pay for a bike for the majority of them so I was forever having to stop take my gloves of found my wallet pay get ticket put wallet back put gloves back on and this is a slow process which I always do very slowly hoping that toll booth owners will realise it is not very efficient charging motorcyclist and all we do is hold up the threw flow of traffic and its bleeding hot every time when you stop. (I spent EUR20.00 on tolls today imagine if I had to do that every day of the trip it would prove to be very costly endeavour)

I decide to call it a day in Ourinhos for no other reason than that I liked the name like I said no idea of where I am or what places are nice and are worth stopping for in this neck of the woods. I spotted a hotel and just as I pulled up it started to chuck it down luckily I was just inside but I was drying some kit on the back of the bike that had got wet before and this was dry but now it was soaking wet again. They had a room but no real safe place for Daisy but they directed me to another Hotel in the centre of town. The rain had eased so I headed there and yes they had a cheap room and safe parking for daisy and Internet so sold.

I went for a walk and it was still raining but not so hard there was not much to see in town I found a place selling meat on stick so sat under an awning out of the rain to enjoy my BBQ meat kebabs and then it really started pissing down so I sat there eating my dinner glad I was not out in that and I waited for it to ease of before finally running from cover to cover back to the hotel to work on this.

After weeks of procrastination I have finally booked my airline ticket home so Phillys is going to Istanbul, as this is the cheapest way I could find to get home with Turkish Airlines it is going to take me 32 hours to get home so that should be fun.

Daisy is being airfreighted to Amsterdam I think via London on British Airways and after doing a lot of research and changing my mind 3 or 4 times a day I have decided to use the services of Dakarmotos http://www.dakarmotos.com not because they where the cheapest but because I had a good feeling on how they operated and I had seen Sandra in action and I knew the bike would get home as I seen her ship some other bikes whilst I was staying there the other options where all somewhat unknown quantities for me and I did not fancy taking any risks.

So that is about 30 days left of traveling in South America and 36 before I am back in reality. You may have noticed I have been a bit of a grouch lately so I need to find my happy mojo. I think the many months of relentless travelling where starting to catch up with me and the heat and me are never a good combination as the fine figure that is Philly is just not designed for these kind of temperatures so once I hit Rio I am going to slow the pace right down and try and enjoy what is left of my trip as I have the time to cut the pace as I am no longer in a hurry to catch a boat or get somewhere before the weather turns cold or any other enforced deadlines so its tappy lappy up the coast back to Buenos Aires but I first I still need to get to Rio.


Ourinhos to Taubate, Sunday, 10 March 2013, Day 250

Handy Bus stops for putting on waterproofs and at least daisy sort of getting a clean 🙂

It rained heavily all night but it was sort of dry when I left this morning you would think that the rain would have taken some of the heat away but it is still very hot. I am trying to get past Sao Paulo today as I do not fancy staying there as it’s a huge dangerous metropolis I am glad I am doing this on a Sunday as I cannot imagine what its like on a normal week day. The strange thing about to day coming into Sao Paulo the toll roads are now free for motorcyclist and they have small lanes at the side where bikes go through for nothing where as up till now I had spend a fortune in Brazil on tolls. All of them except one there where about 20 toll booths spread across the road I was heading for the far right as this where the bike lane usually is but as I was doing this a car started honking his horn and signalling me to go for the middle as at this one the bike lane right in the middle just to confuse us poor foreigners like me so I had to cross another 10 lanes of traffic to get to the bike lane like I said I was glad it was Sunday. As I left Sao Paulo they started charging again for motorcyclist so Philly is confused and ask an attendant why this in bad Spanish and response I got  in Portuguese but from what I can gather going into town is free for bikes going out you have to pay so I am guessing my faffing and taken my time at toll booths may have been noticed by the owners so they are not charging on the way in when I am guessing its utter chaos in morning rush hour now for the rest of country all toll roads free for motorcyclist as we are small and inefficient vehicles to process so lets do away with charging us.

Good Graffiti like it when done well.

I got lost a couple of time getting across Sao Paulo as there where huge 10 lane highways split into smaller ones all going the same way but taking different routes to get there around the various obstacles and spaghetti junction after spaghetti junction so even with my GPS I was finding it hard to navigate through this mine field.

I was heading for a place called Sao Jose dos Campus as this seemed like a big town past Sao Paulo leaving a reasonable run left to get me to Rio.

I drove around looking for a hotel and there did not seem to be any affordable ones available and if the where affordable they had no availability. It was hot again had been raining earlier in the day and it was threatening to rain again. My lonely Planet had nothing on the places I have been travelling through the last couple of days so I take a look at the map and there is another town called Taubate about 40km down the road so I have a new destination.

Yes it was Ideal.

I finally found a nice little affordable nice hotel I’m Taubate and go for a wander around town looking for food. Again this is just another ordinary Brazilian town but pleasant enough for an evening.I find a Chinese restaurant for my dinner and it has been a while since I had had  one and I ordered Singapore Noodles, which was more Indian Curry than Chinese style but it was a nice change.


Got back to the hotel just as it started to piss down with rain. I was sitting the kitchen/ dining room which was a building attached to the side of the house and not attached that well as it was pouring outside and water was running down the walls and across the floor so I retired to my room which was in a more waterproof part of the building 🙂