Touring by Bike South America, Africa and Europe by Bicycle

Day 6. Departure from Punta Hermosa. DSC_1688
Day 6. Heading South from Punta Hermosa

Punta Hermosa to Clarita.

Km today: 120
Km total: 172
Technical problems: none
Spanish world of the day: higo. I did eat a very good helado de higo.

Day 6. At Blue beach hostal. DSC_1686

Right before departure from the hostal in Punta Hermosa

Well, I continued on panamericana sur today. I only managed to leave at 11:30, after packing, repacking because I was not sure where some of the stuff is, etc. The bike is in good shape, so do I.

Day 6. Departure from Punta Hermosa.

Departure from Punta Hermosa hostal

Soon after leaving I met a group of three cyclists on the opposite side of the road. I also pass by another group of three people biking on some cheap bikes. the sun its taking its toll and I have to stop pretty often, eat, hydrate. Not much to talk about today, it was highway all the way. I can do a steady 18-20km per hour, which is good. by 2 pm I see a touring cyclist on the other side of panamericana, we salute by hand, but is close to impossible to stop and talk. A lot of up and down on the road, but maximum altitude of just 180 m. I plan to reach Clarita, where I intend to camp on the beach. Is getting dark at 7 p.m. and I regret again not installing the lights on the bike. I stop to ask some street vendors about the road to Clarita and they tell me there is no hotel there.

Well, at their suggestion, I decided to camp behind their house, there was another gringo who did the same. One little girl (Angela, age 14) is helping me with the tent. I have a problem, the new arch poles are not enough for both arches. With a rope and Angela’s help I manage to fix it and stabilize the tent. I can only hope it will not rain tonight, so I don’t add the second sheet. When all is finished I go to the woman to ask for something to drink, eventually a beer. She tells me they are “hermanos” (evangelists) so they don’t drink beer. I try to explain that after 120 km of biking beer is not that bad, but I don’t have as chance (to make her understand).

Some minutes later I can see Nora, Angela’s sister, 22, mother of a 3 years old boy, coming from a truck that was parked there for about 15 minutes and bringing some coins. I also understand why Angela vanished in the house and why a truck is parked in front of the house. I’m pretty sure they provide sex services to the truck drivers, under the eyes of their mother. Their mother is the person that tells me that having a beer after 120 km of biking is bad. But selling your young daughters as prostitutes is not so wrong, no ?
She asks me what I work (I have to explain what informatics is) and how much I gain. I try to avoid the answer about the income, mumble something, thinking of what’s happening here.

I’m so angry I could only sleep. Not before noticing the same “lady” buying petrol from a truck, directly from the tank, of course. Totally legal, right ?

The night was short; at 4 pm a motorcycle stopped and someone is pouring water into a tank or something. I feel scared, but I reason that if someone wants to kill me he wouldn’t first wake me up, thus giving me a chance to fight. I even hear the price: 5 bucks of water: 40 soles.

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