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    Archive for October, 2008

    Day 936 – A Twisted Wedding on Halloween

    Friday, October 31st, 2008

    Bread sellers in Cusco, Peru.

    Catching up with the daily news...

    Heavy!

    Street musician. Cusco, Peru.

    Indigenas all ready for the tourists´ money...Cusco, Peru

    The classic 12-sided stone. Cusco, Peru.

    Halloween at the Loki Hostal 2008.

    A different wedding!

    The Cyclist. Haloween 2008. Cusco, Peru.

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    Day 935 – Sicuani -> Cusco (hospedaje)

    Thursday, October 30th, 2008

    Sicuani -> Cusco (hospedaje)
    Distance (km) : 142
    Time on bike : 7h 22m
    Brutto time: 06.50 – 16.00
    Avg : 19.2 km/h
    Max.speed: 76.5
    Total (km) : 36.912
    Altitude (end of day): 3.400 m

    Morning in Sicuani, Peru.

    Lovely cycling between Sicuani and Cusco.

    Leftovers from the blocade...

    Lovely cycling between Sicuani and Cusco.

    More leftovers from the blocade...

    Lovely cycling between Sicuani and Cusco.

    Lovely cycling between Sicuani and Cusco.

    Young farmers.

    Farmers near Urcos, Peru.

    Jagged mountains near Urcos, Peru.

    Mud-brick making on the shores of the river...

    Cusco by night...

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    Day 934 – Pucará -> Sicuani (*** hotel)

    Wednesday, October 29th, 2008

    Pucará -> Sicuani (*** hotel)
    Distance (km) : 142
    Time on bike : 7h 43m
    Brutto time: 07.15 – 17.15
    Avg : 18.4 km/h
    Max.speed: 57.1
    Total (km) : 36.770
    Altitude (end of day): 3.550 m

    Smooth cycling north of Pucara, Peru.

    Just posing. Wasn´t tired (yet)...

    Altiplano cycling near Ayaviri, Peru.

    Goretex heaven!

    Santa Rosa cemetery...

    Abra La Raya, 4.338 mas.

    Blocade near Sicuani, Peru.

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    Day 933 – Puno -> Pucará (hospedaje)

    Tuesday, October 28th, 2008

    Puno -> Pucará (hospedaje)
    Distance (km) : 109
    Time on bike : 5h 50m
    Brutto time: 08.00 – 15.15
    Avg : 18.6 km/h
    Max.speed: 44.2
    Total (km) : 36.628
    Altitude (end of day): 3.870 m

    Leaving Puno means a little climb back up on the altiplano...

    Flat cycling north of Puno, Peru.

    Lunch outside of Juliaca.

    Another flat tyre! Near Juliaca, Peru.

    Altiplano cycling near Juliaca...

    Uhh, looks pretty dark to me!

    Ceramic figures in the courtyard where I stayed in Pucara, Peru.

    Pucara, Peru.

    Don Martin, the mechanic in Pucara.

    Basic accoomdation in Pucara.

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    Photo Album from Argentina

    Monday, October 27th, 2008

    I’ve just put together a new photo album from beautiful Argentina. Personally, I think it’s one of the best/most pretty so far. But then again, that’s just me…

    Have a look!

    WT Photo Album from Argentina (180 photos)

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    Day 932 – Rain in Puno

    Monday, October 27th, 2008

    Puno tri-cycle.

    Puno in sepia...

    Puno downtown...

    Puno street life...

    Another Puno tri-cycle...

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    Day 931 – Copacabana (Bol) -> Puno (Peru)

    Sunday, October 26th, 2008

    Copacabana -> Puno (hostal)
    Distance (km) : 145
    Time on bike : 7h 52m
    Brutto time: 08.30 – 17.30 (Peru time)
    Avg : 18.4 km/h
    Max.speed: 64.3
    Total (km) : 36.519
    Altitude (end of day): 3.830 m

    Horses near Copacabana, Bolivia.

    Lake Titicaca.

    Welcome to Peru!

    Peruvian village near Katani.

    The Young Shepherd.

    Primitive settlement on my way to Puno...

    Geology

    Peruvian farmers.

    Farm house near Lake Titicaca, Peru.

    Having a break in the ditch...

    Fire in the fields...

    Hail-hail...

    Puno by night...

    Puno cathedral...

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    Day 930 – Grey skies in Copa

    Saturday, October 25th, 2008

    (Photos to come)

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    Day 929 – Copacabana

    Friday, October 24th, 2008

    (Photos to come)

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    Day 928 – SPd Tiquina -> Copacabana (hostal)

    Thursday, October 23rd, 2008

    Tiquina -> Copacabana (hostal)
    Distance (km) : 40
    Time on bike : 2h 51m
    Brutto time: 09.50 – 14.30
    Avg : 14.0 km/h
    Max.speed: 58.9
    Total (km) : 36.373
    Altitude (end of day): 3.810 m

    My little room in San Tiquina, Bolivia.

    Ace & the mules.

    Tiquina at the Titicaca Lake.

    Titicaca Lake, Bolivia.

    Enjoying lunch and the views over Titicaca.

    Llamas (nearly) having sex. Near Copacabana, Bolivia.

    Llamas having sex. Near Copacabana, Bolivia.

    Copacabana town...

    A cloud over Titicaca...

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    Day 927 – La Paz -> San Pedro de Tiquina (hostal)

    Wednesday, October 22nd, 2008

    La Paz -> San Pedro de Tiquina (hostal)
    Distance (km) : 114
    Time on bike : 6h 31m
    Brutto time: 09.40 – 18.00
    Avg : 17.4 km/h
    Max.speed: 56.9
    Total (km) : 36.333
    Altitude (end of day): 3.810 m

    Leaving La Paz. Nicolai and Swedish Phillip from Loki Hostal.

    El Alto market, La Paz Suburb.

    Typical altiplano setting west of La Paz, Bolivia.

    Cordillera Real, Bolivia.

    Doing the laundry.

    Cordillera Real as a nice backdrop...

    The Sad Bull...

    The Sad Bull 2

    Housing on the Titicaca Lake...

    A Woman and her Donkey. Titicaca - Bolivia 2008.

    The Koga on the raft...Tiquina, Bolivia.

    The Koga on the raft. Tiquina, Bolivia.

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    Day 926 – The Demonstrations Continues…

    Tuesday, October 21st, 2008

    (Photos to come)

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    Photo Album from Chile

    Tuesday, October 21st, 2008

    I´ve picked some (82) of the best photos from Chile, a country that I´ll definitely go back to some other time. I spent just around 2 weeks in Chile (+ 8 days on Easter Island), most of which I was staying with my good friend Paola and her family in a Santiago suburb. Crossing the Andes was a highlight and quite a challenge.

    It´s a world full of opportunities, so there are 3 ways to see the photos from Chile;

    1. On Flickr
    2. As a Flickr Slideshow (click on photos to see text box pop-up)
    3. On WT

    I hope you enjoy!

    Nicolai (La Paz, Bolivia – 21OCT2008)

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    Day 925 – Los Marchistas in La Paz

    Monday, October 20th, 2008

    Tune of the Day: Say a Little Prayer – Aretha Franklin

    (Photos to come)

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    Day 924 – Carnival in La Paz (and a Top 10) (UK)

    Sunday, October 19th, 2008

    Going out the last few nights hasn’t purely been one massive diabolic drinking fête (but close, really). Thus, times spent in bars and discos have given me the opportunity the make an anthropological (sort of) reflection on the drinking habits of the different nationalities I’ve met on this and previous travels. Some people really know how to throw a party, how to bottom (up) those Bock beers and drinks. To me (and I’m sure I’m not the only one) the Irish people will forever be on top of this drinking, party-loving list. They know it. They’re proud of it.

    Top 10 Party People of the World

    1. Ireland
    2. England
    3. Australia
    4. Holland
    5. New Zealand
    6. Scotland
    7. Israel
    8. United States
    9. Sweden
    10. Denmark

    Carnival time in La Paz!

    Carnival time in La Paz!

    Carnival time in La Paz!

    I feel alive today. I walk the endless streets of La Paz, just sucking in the atmosphere created my thousands of Sunday relaxing Bolivians.

    Carnival time in La Paz!

    Carnival time in La Paz!

    Street vendor, La Paz.

    There are loads of parades on the main drag through the city. Very carnivalesque, very colourful, very impressive, very crazy. Seeing the cholitas, the pony-tailed, aymara and quechua speaking indígenas with bowlerhats and short skirts drinking beers like there was no tomorrow and hugely enjoying themselves, is a happy sight.

    Jugo de naranja. La Paz.

    Carnival time in La Paz!

    San Francisco Catedral, La Paz.

    Having fun under the Bowler hats!

    This is La Paz, Bolivia and I love all bits of it.

    Colours of La Paz.

    Pigeon feeding in La Paz.

    Fiesta en La Paz...

    The lowlight of the day is the a visit to the movies. The Bolivian/US made production called Nocturnia is such a crappy movie with a stupid out-of-control ending that didn’t make sense to me at all (admittedly, I probably wasn’t firing on all cylinders after 3 heavy nights out in a row!). 2 hours of total waste + money. Don’t go.

    Simon Bolívar. La Paz, Bolivia.

    In the evening I randomly run into my Swiss dorm mates, Andrea & Martina and we decide to go out for a big steak dinner. Our bodies are all craving for something just a little more substantial than cerveza.

    Nicolai, Andrea, and Martina (both Swiss) at Mongo's in La Paz.

    T-bone, Coke Light and cosy times it is then…

    The Ball Room Bar at Loki Hostal...

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    Day 923 – Payback time in La Paz (UK)

    Saturday, October 18th, 2008

    Organized Chaos

    Tune of the Day: Crosses – José Gonzáles

    La Paz city bus...

    It’s payback time for my nocturnal excesses today. Apart from a little cruise around town I stay in my 8 bed dorm room most of the day, crashing and recovering. There are now 3 Israelis in my room. On all demographic grounds and considerations (and without intentionally hurting anyone) that’s got to be enough.

    The sad-looking Charlie...

    Plaza de los Estudiantes, La Paz.

    Majestic Illimani (some 6.400 m) looming over La Paz...

    My home in La Paz: the great Loki Hostal...

    It’s Saturday and because of the general consensus that we are here to have a good time, Saturday means more alcohol and drinks. It’s a great concept for now. I feel like 21 again.

    Loki Hostal, La Paz. A beautiful old construction...

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    Day 922 – My Visual Take on La Paz (UK)

    Friday, October 17th, 2008

    This is good. La Paz has taken me by surprise already. The bustling city is full (as in FULL) of street vendors, small interim, ramshackle stalls selling whatever anyone would possibly need. Including plastic bags with drinking water (0.5L) at just 8 US cents/bag – a much needed offer after yesterday’s drinking bout in the classy, colonial bar (the old ball room) at the great Loki Hostal packed with international, fun-loving travellers.

    Llama foetus in La Paz' Witch Market...

    Llama foetus in La Paz - Bolivia.

    Homeless or just seriously hungover?

    Plaza Murillo, La Paz - Bolivia.

    Llama foetus in La Paz' Witch Market...

    The Naked Pollo...

    Aymara tradition (incl. llama foetus) in La Paz...

    For hours I walk around the busy streets of the capital, wathcing, smelling, listening, filming, snacking (a beautiful fruit shake go for just 45 US cents, so why not take two?).

    Market in La Paz...

    San Francisco Catedral - La Paz.

    La Paz street life...

    On a more interesting note, I met what was most likely my first street bandit today. A suspiciously looking figure was following me in one of the crowdier backstreets. I stopped to see what he was up to, he did the same a few seconds later, looking down and around secretly checking up on my whereabouts.

    Inside the San Francisco Catedral - La Paz.

    I instinctly knew something wasn’t right, so I decided to confront the bugger and went right next to him staring at him trying to indirectly show him that I knew what kind of bad fella’ he was and that it’d take a more cleverly configured masterplan to trick me. My beloved Canon SLR was not going to change ownership just now. I think the bugger got the message and soon left the place, head down.

    Street vendor in La Paz.

    Meat market in La Paz...

    Since I arrived in Sucre a few weeks ago, going out, meeting people, having a few stubbies has become an increasingly important part of the journey at this stage. Partly because I now feel that I can afford it, and partly because sharing stories, laughing, communicating and other important ingredients in the social fabric called life, really is what matters when it all comes down to it. You can take (and be impressed by) only so many waterfalls, canyons etc. but the social life, sharing perspectives on this and that never stops impressing me.

    Catnapping in the office hours!

    La Paz street life...

    La Paz street life...

    Cinnamon sticks...

    La Paz market...

    Girls & Pigeons.

    Plaza de los Estudiantes, La Paz.

    And Loki Hostal is a great place for just that. It is to be a wild and crazy night out with handfuls of newly made friends from New Zealand, Switzerland, Australia, Germany, Ireland, the UK, Brazil, Bolivia at the Loki Bar and (in the wee hours) the nightclub Orange.

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    Day 921 – Patacamaya -> La Paz (hostal)

    Thursday, October 16th, 2008

    Patacamaya -> La Paz (hostal)
    Distance (km) : 105
    Time on bike : 6h 26m
    Brutto time: 07.10 – 15.30
    Avg : 16.3 km/h
    Max.speed: 60.8
    Total (km) : 36.220
    Altitude (end of day): 3.700 m

    Los Marchistas on their way to La Paz...

    Los Marchistas on their way to La Paz...

    Marchista

    Marchistas...

    Sort of flat, sort of boring. Bolivian altiplano...

    Llamas on the Bolivian altiplano...

    75 km south of La Paz...

    Nicolai and the Koga on the Bolivian altiplano...

    Just south of La Paz, Bolivia.

    Finally! La Paz is here...

    La Paz in all its´ glory..

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    Day 920 – Caracollo -> Patacamaya (pensión)

    Wednesday, October 15th, 2008

    Caracollo -> Patacamaya (pensión)
    Distance (km) : 90
    Time on bike : 5h 0m
    Brutto time: 09.00 – 15.00
    Avg : 18.1 km/h
    Max.speed: 46.0
    Total (km) : 36.115
    Altitude (end of day): 3.850 m

    Caracollo, Bolivia

    My pension (red building) in Caracollo, Bolivia.

    Morning coffee in a little eatery. Caracollo, Bolivia.

    Village on the Bolivian altiplano...

    Altiplano - Bolivia, October 2008.

    Lunch break in Konani, Bolivia.

    Busy "junction village" north of Konani on my way to La Paz.

    Bus crash south of Patacamaya, Bolivia.

    Los Marchistas on their way to La Paz...

    Los Marchistas on their way to La Paz...

    Los Marchistas on their way to La Paz...

    My alojamiento for the night. Patacamaya, Bolivian altiplano.

    Patacamaya, Bolivia.

    Pollo, pollo, pollo. Bolivia is a nation obsessed with chicken...

    Loaded!

    Indigena in Patacamaya, Bolivia.

    Indigenas - Patacamaya, Bolivia.

    Los Marchistas.

    Tune of the Day: The Hunter’s Star – Shearwater

    There's the bugger!

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    Day 919 – Cochabamba -> Caracollo (alojamiento)

    Tuesday, October 14th, 2008

    Cochabamba -> Caracollo (alojamiento)
    Distance (km) : 193 (!)
    Time on bike : 7h 53m
    Brutto time: 09.15 – 19.00
    Avg : 24.4 km/h
    Max.speed: 76.6 (!)
    Total (km) : 36.024
    Altitude (end of day): 3.750 m

    The Andean giants that I´m just about to enter...West of Cochabamba, Bolivia.

    Lunch break in Parotani, Bolivia.

    Andean foothills west of Cochabamba.

    Pongo Village (4.100 m.a.s) - between Cochabamba and Oruro. Bolivia, October 2008.

    Truck surfing rules!

    In the Andes...

    La Cumbre Pass, 4.496 m. Bolivia.

    Altiplano, Bolivia.

    From La Cumbre Pass...

    Altiplano settlement.

    Altiplano settlement.

    Bolivian village near Caracollo.

    The pension that never was. Leque Palca, Bolivia.

    Moon rise over the Bolivian altiplano...

    It was another crazy cycling day in Bolivia...

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    Day 918 – Cochabamba Market

    Monday, October 13th, 2008

    Social fabric in Cochabamba

    Cochabamba market...

    Cochabamba market...

    Cochabamba market...

    Cochabamba market...

    Cochabamba kid.

    Cochabamba market...

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    Top 25 World’s Beautiful Cities (UK)

    Monday, October 13th, 2008

    Following is a highly biased and subjective list of the world’s most beautiful cities. The criteria are: A) a population of minimum 100.000 and B) minimum a few days of personal exploration.

    As with human beings, beauty is a questionable concept that has many different sources. Some, like #1 and #2, are just blessed with the most stunning setting imaginable. Others, like #5, #8, and #9 find beauty in their majestic magnitude and historical grandeur. Others again, like #4, #11, and #18 holds a certain socio-cultural attraction that make those places beautiful in my eyes.

    To make it clear(er) where I find the beauty of these cities, I’ve added a few parametres, plus the year of the visit(s).

    N = Natural setting
    M = Monuments and buildings
    C = Cultural interest and beauty
    H = Historical depth and beauty

    Top 25 World’s Beautiful Cities

    1. Sydney, Australia [N – 2008]
    2. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil [N – 1998, 2002]
    3. Istanbul, Turkey [N, M, H - 2006]
    4. Marrakech, Morocco [M, C – 2005 (x2)]
    5. Rome, Italy [M, C, H - 1994]
    6. Copenhagen, Denmark [N, M, H – 2001-2006]
    7. Cusco, Peru [M, C, H - 1998]
    8. Madrid, Spain [M, H – 1999, 2004]
    9. Paris, France [M, C, H - 1993]
    10. Chiang Mai, Thailand [M, C, H – 2000, 2007]
    11. Samarkand, Uzbekistan [M, C, H - 2006]
    12. Melbourne, Australia [N, C - 2008]
    13. Oaxaca, Mexico [M, C, H - 1998]
    14. Sucre, Bolivia [N, M, C - 2008]
    15. Granada, Spain [M, C - 1999]
    16. Krakow, Poland [M, H - 2006]
    17. Salta, Argentina [M, C, H - 2008]
    18. Potosí, Bolivia [N, M, C, H – 1998, 2008]
    19. Aarhus, Denmark [N, M, H – 1998-2001]
    20. Lisbon, Portugal [N, M, H – 1999, 2001]
    21. Luang Prabang, Laos [N, C – 2000, 2007]
    22. Bukhara, Uzbekistan [M, C, H - 2006]
    23. Hanoi, Vietnam [M, C, H - 2007]
    24. Granada, Nicaragua [N, C - 1998]
    25. San Cristóbal de las Casas, Mexico [M, C, H - 1997]

    Comments are always welcome!

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    Day 917 – Sunday in Cochabamba

    Sunday, October 12th, 2008

    Homeless in Cochabamba, Bolivia.

    The Tarija Teens. Cochabamba, Bolivia.

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    Cochabamba Update (UK)

    Sunday, October 12th, 2008

    A brief note here from Cochabamba (approx. 610.000 inhabitants) – the City of Eternal Spring – in Central Western Bolivia.

    I got here on Wednesday late afternoon after 3 very long and hard cycling days from Sucre (see log). 24 hours of tough and hilly pedalling in 3 days. The roads were a great mix of smooth asphalt, concrete blocks (smooth as well), potholed asphalt, cobbled roads (bad and agate-shaking, yes!), gravel. Bolivia is diverse!

    Meanwhile, I’ve been trying hard to catch up with all the caipirinhas & cervezas that I haven’t been drinking lately due to the rough cycling here in Bolivia. I randomly ran into a Danish guy, Christian at the fruit market stalls the other day. Such a great thing! Christian is an anthropologist (to-be) and is here in Bolivia to do his field work. We’ve been hanging out for the last few days and it’s just been fantastic to catch up on my Danish again and to enjoy the luxury of great company.

    Haven’t done much during the last days here; eating well, listening to Band of Horses (I’m totally lost in this song on Youtube – check it out!) in the cheap internet cafes, hanging out in parks and in the sunny streets of Cochabamba – yet another great, great Bolivian city. A the lures of the good night life here has turned me into an ad hoc nocturnal beast for now. It’s hard on the liver but it’s good fun.

    A few photo updates in the diary…

    Day 908
    Day 909
    Day 910

    More to come soonish…

    Another sort of update from the automobile corner…

    Realizing that it’s just 400 km on smooth asphalt (crossing a altiplano high pass in nearly 4.500 m) before I hit the administrative capital, La Paz and from there some 100 km to the Peruvian border has made me slow down a bit for now (meaning: chilling out in cities just a bit longer). I’m not really in a rush to leave Bolivia that (as expected) has been fantastic in many ways – culturally (lots of photogenic aymara and quechua indians), gastronomically (great, filling, cheap food stuff around), socially, naturally, economically (dirt cheap).

    Tarabuco Sunday Market. Bolivia, October 2008

    Thanks for your support out there. I hope all is good with everyone.

    Nicolai

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    Purmamarca 360 Degrees Panorama

    Saturday, October 11th, 2008

    I’ve made a panorama photo from the Argentinian village Purmamarca. From a hill top lookout there was a great 360 degrees view of the city and the Piedra de Los Siete Colores (The 7-coloured Rock) that’s Purmarca’s claim to fame.

    Purmamarca panorama

    (Click on the photo in the link for a better resolution)

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    Day 916 – The Silent Day

    Saturday, October 11th, 2008

    Cochabamba street life...

    Cochabamba main plaza...

    Rush hour in Cochabamba, Bolivia...

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    Day 915 – The End’s Not Near (UK)

    Friday, October 10th, 2008

    At the laundry service. Cochabamba, Bolivia.

    Yesterday’s attempt at trying to catch up with some of the beers and social times that I’m not always able to access when on the road, well, it was successful.

    Colourful Cochabamba bus

    I just cruise around town today. Cochabamba has quite a bit of a big city buzz but is still a very pleasant city on a sunny day.

    Market in Cochabamba, Bolivia.

    Tune of the Day: The End’s Not Near – Band of Horses

    Tonight’s another big night out with for the Danish vikingos. ‘Cos that’s really how we feel, being blond and tall and in Cochabamba. :-) Tres dangereux… :-)

    Christian (DK), German Nicole & Marina, and I in Cochabamba, Bolivia.

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    Day 914 – A Danish Encounter in Cochabamba

    Thursday, October 9th, 2008

    Cochabamba MC police squad

    Christian and the Bolivian gentleman...Cochabamba Market.

    A Red Wall in a Red City. Cochabamba, Bolivia.

    Pigeons gotta be on the list of the most simple and stupid creatures around. I’ve studied a lot of pigeons in all parts of the world, in rural and urban settings, and it’s the same thing every time: Eat and screw, eat and screw, eat and screw. That’s really all it takes to be a pigeon. And these were no different.

    Eat and screw, eat and screw...

    Chance has it that I meet a fellow Dane today at the fruit market in Cochabamba. Christian is here in Bolivia to do his anthropological fieldwork for some 4-5 months. We spend most of the afternoon speaking Danish at the fruit market. Haven’t really felt that kind of understanding for a long, long time and it feels great.

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    Day 913 – My Eurocentric Conceptualization of the World (UK)

    Wednesday, October 8th, 2008

    Totora -> Cochabamba (hostal)
    Distance (km) : 143
    Time on bike : 7h 41m
    Brutto time: 09.15 – 18.30
    Avg : 18.6 km/h
    Max.speed: 72.8 (!)
    Total (km) : 35.831
    Altitude (end of day): 2.550 m

    Do you have something for breakfast?, I asked the lady in the little eatery this morning.
    Yes, we have steaks, chicken and pork, the answer was.
    OK, but do you have something without meat? [It was 8AM and my stomac and mind was set on something more normal like bread and coffee]
    Yes, we have egg and rice.
    I’ll have one of those then…

    A man at the table next to mine (who just got their massive steaks) addresses the gringo:
    Don’t you like meat?
    Yes, I do, but I prefer something without meat for breakfast.

    He laughs at me. The kind of laugther that leaves no doubt that this was not behaviour according to the cultural do´s and don’ts in this Bolivian village. A laugh that made it clear who was the cultural oddity in this case.
    Later I ask for something to drink to my rice and fried eggs but this question just confirms the fact that I’m a stranger not aware of how things work here in Totora. They have nothing to drink at all. Obviously!

    Farming the Bolivian way anno 2008. West of Epizana.

    My Western thinking, my Eurocentric conceptualization of the world, its people and the connection between the two, of the cultural and social stuff that constitutes being human is constantly challenged and transformed in the meeting with other worlds with others sounds, rhythms, norms. For me this is one of the most important ingredients in the dish called travel. I simply love it (though I probably would’ve prefered my coffee and bread instead of those boiled potatoes for breakfast…)

    10½ non-stop sleep. That’s how much my body demanded after yesterdays’ tough 75 km of cycling on roads paved with cobblestones. Today is to be another marathon day in the saddle.
    The first 25 km from Totora is fairly flat and goes through gum trees lined farmland with that beautiful smell of eucalyptus that will forever remind me of Australia. There’s even colourful parrots in the tree tops.
    Little boy in Epizana, Bolivia.

    Next up is 4 hours of almost constant uphill, from 2.500 m to 3.600 m, all on smooth asphalt and with a nice tailwind for a change. Cloudy, 8C.

    From the col at 3.600 m a god-blessed downhill meets me. The landscape is beautiful, green hills, the sun finds it way through the clouds and the speed (up to 72.8 km/h) is thrilling. As usual the dare-devil fun is over way to early and I reach the flat Cochabamba Valley and push on the last 40 km to Cochabamba.

    For three days I’ve been cycling through some of the poorest Bolivia, I’ve been cycling through tiny settlements of primitive adobe houses, donkeys and goats everywhere, through green valleys, across semi-dry river beds…and then suddenly I’m in Cochabamba (Bolivia’s 3rd city, 610.000 inh.), sitting in an Italian restaurant (aptly named Don Corleone), watching a Sting DVD concert on the flatscreen, waiting for my huge pizza (I do deserve it!), drinking cold beer. The beauty of cycling.

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    Day 912 – Aiquile -> Totora (hostal)

    Tuesday, October 7th, 2008

    Aiquile -> Totora (hostal)
    Distance (km) : 75
    Time on bike : 7h 25m
    Brutto time: 09.40 – 18.00
    Avg : 10.1 (!) km/h
    Max.speed: 40.4
    Total (km) : 35.688
    Altitude (end of day): 2.800 m

    The cobbled highway between Aiquile and Totora, Bolivia.

    The highway between Aiquile and Totora, Bolivia.

    The cobbled highway between Aiquile and Totora, Bolivia.

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    Day 911 – Sucre -> Aiquile (hostal)

    Monday, October 6th, 2008

    Sucre -> Aiquile (hostal)
    Distance (km) : 144
    Time on bike : 9h 11m (!)
    Brutto time: 09.15 – 20.05
    Avg : 15.6 km/h
    Max.speed: 61.5
    Total (km) : 35.612
    Altitude (end of day): 2.250 m

    (Photos to come)

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    Day 910 – Tarabuco Market

    Sunday, October 5th, 2008

    Prepare yourself for a massive dose of campesino colours from the Tarabuco Sunday Market…

    Tarabuco Sunday Market. Bolivia, October 2008.

    Tarabuco Sunday Market. Bolivia, October 2008

    Tarabuco Sunday Market. Bolivia, October 2008

    Tarabuco Sunday Market. Bolivia, October 2008

    Tarabuco Sunday Market. Bolivia, October 2008

    Tarabuco Sunday Market. Bolivia, October 2008

    Tarabuco Sunday Market. Bolivia, October 2008

    Tarabuco Sunday Market. Bolivia, October 2008

    Tarabuco Sunday Market. Bolivia, October 2008

    Tarabuco Sunday Market. Bolivia, October 2008

    Please don´t pee in our streets!

    Tarabuco Sunday Market. Bolivia, October 2008

    Tarabuco Sunday Market. Bolivia, October 2008

    Tarabuco Sunday Market. Bolivia, October 2008

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    Top 60 Days of Beauty

    Saturday, October 4th, 2008

    Well into my third year of cycling around the world, there’s been so many special, visually (among other levels) beautiful moments. Amazingly photogenic days that seriously help making this travel life highly addictive. Days that often leave me feeling satisfied wow!-like for a few days (until the next pangs of hunger for the beauty of the world strikes again, that is).

    Here’s a chronological list of 60 of these days of visual beauty (be it naturally, culturally, or otherwise). In any case, days that showed me the incredible visual feast that is the world. And another beauty of it all is that it is all out there. All we have to do is to choose the world, open the eyes and the mind, stop for a while, and push the release button.

    Here we go…

    1. Sighisoara, Romania
    2. Istanbul, Turkey
    3. Cappadocia, Turkey
    4. Kazbegi, Georgia
    5. Ashgabad, Turkmenistan
    6. Bukhara, Uzbekistan
    7. Samarkand, Uzbekistan
    8. Margilan, Uzbekistan
    9. Osh, Kyrgystan
    10. Kochkor, Kyrgystan
    11. Kashgar, China
    12. Darchen, Tibet (China)
    13. Kathmandu, Nepal
    14. Battambang, Cambodia
    15. Angkor Wat, Cambodia
    16. Sa Pa, Vietnam
    17. Luang Prabang, Laos
    18. Chiang Rai, Thailand
    19. Chiang Mai, Thailand
    20. Ayutthaya, Thailand
    21. Koh Tao, Thailand
    22. Georgetown, Malaysia
    23. Pulau Tioman, Malaysia
    24. Tanjung Pinang, Indonesia
    25. Bandung (daytrip to Kawah Putih), Java, Indonesia
    26. Tasikmalaya (daytrip), Java, Indonesia (DK text)
    27. Yogyakarta, Java, Indonesia
    28. Solo, Java, Indonesia
    29. Mt. Bromo, Java, Indonesia
    30. Bali, Indonesia
    31. Gili Trawangan, Indonesia
    32. Sumbawa Island, Indonesia (or here or here)
    33. Katherine, NT., Australia
    34. Outback, SA., Australia (or here)
    35. Barossa Valley, SA., Australia
    36. Twelve Apostles Nat. Park, VIC., Australia
    37. Tasmania, West Coast, Australia (and here)
    38. Tasmania, East Coast, Australia
    39. Mornington Peninsula, VIC., Australia
    40. Sydney, NSW, Australia (or here)
    41. Milford Sound, New Zealand
    42. Mt. Cook Nat. Park, New Zealand
    43. Queenstown, New Zealand
    44. Glacier Country, South Island, New Zealand
    45. West Coast, South Island, New Zealand
    46. Tongariro Crossing, New Zealand
    47. Wai-O-Tapu Wonderland, New Zealand
    48. Coromandel Peninsula, New Zealand
    49. Foa Island, Ha’apai, Tonga
    50. Moorea (daytrip), French Polynesia
    51. Easter Island, Chile
    52. Santiago, Chile (or here)
    53. San Juan Province, Argentina
    54. Chilecito surroundings, Argentina (and here)
    55. Cafayate, Argentina (and here)
    56. Salta, Argentina
    57. Purmamarca, Argentina
    58. Villazón, Bolivia
    59. Tupiza, Bolivia (and here)
    60. Potosí, Bolivia
    (to be continued)

    Nicolai (Sucre, Bolivia)

    See all WT Photo Sets on Flickr

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    Day 909 – Sucre Portraits

    Saturday, October 4th, 2008

    Cleaning my baby...Sucre, Bolivia.

    Tune of the Day: In the Name of Love – U2

    Blind Street Musician in Sucre, Bolivia.

    Hungry?

    Kids at the main market. Sucre, Bolivia.

    Roberto and I at the main plaza, Sucre - Bolivia.

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    Day 908 – A Mirador and a Poor Thing in Sucre

    Friday, October 3rd, 2008

    Street corner in Sucre, Bolivia...

    Mirador - Sucre, Bolivia.

    Sucre city

    Narrow street in Sucre, Bolivia.

    He had a rough day...

    Colegio in Sucre.

    Poor thing...Sucre Main Market

    Now that´s a big steak! Dinner with French Nicolas and Elodie in Sucre, Bolivia.

    The electronic part of Camp WT - now with a new 250 GB baby...

    French Elodie and Nicolas. Sucre, Bolivia.

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    Day 907 – Sucre, La Ciudad Blanca

    Thursday, October 2nd, 2008

    0 km etc.

    Gruta de Lourdes, Sucre - Bolivia.

    Sucre city life...

    Sucre city life...

    Mercado Municipal, Sucre - Bolivia.

    Mercado Municipal, Sucre - Bolivia.

    Mercado Municipal, Sucre - Bolivia.

    Mercado Municipal, Sucre - Bolivia.

    Sucre city life...

    The Coffee Man. Mercado Municipal, Sucre - Bolivia.

    Mini demonstration (WE WANT PEACE!) in Sucre, Bolivia.

    Church, Sucre - Bolivia.

    Nicolas, Elodie and Nicolai. Sucre - Bolivia.

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    Day 906 – Potosí -> Sucre (hostal)

    Wednesday, October 1st, 2008

    Potosí -> Sucre (hostal)
    Distance (km) : 157
    Time on bike : 7h 50m
    Brutto time: 08.50 – 18.15
    Avg : 20.0 km/h
    Max.speed: 68.4
    Total (km) : 35.469
    Altitude (end of day): 2.720 m

    Hothothot! In the sun, betw. Potosi and Sucre - Bolivia

    Landscape north of Potosi.

    Tune of the Day: People Carrier – Morcheeba

    Up- and downhill between Potosi and Sucre...

    Zona Geologica Inestable!

    Chiquisaca Castle, south of Sucre.

    That´s my way!

    A little mountain ridge just south of Sucre - Bolivia.

    El Congreso. Sucre - Bolivia.

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