500 Miles Across the Pampas
It’s only the first day on a bike (not the bike) and I’m thinking whose idea was this anyway? Here’s this episode’s scene from the Shit Happens Express. It’s almost midnight and we’re 400+ miles west of Buenos Aires on what I think is Highway 9. I don’t know for sure as I’ve been looking at the back of this Mercedes van for the past nine hours, as its my only compass of where we’re headed. Why I have my nose up this van’s butt is a long story and I don’t want to repeat it. Suffice it to say that if I lose the van, I’m lost.
Back to our scene. I’ve been on the bike for nine straight hours and will eventually do 10+ before all is done. I’m not in my “comfort zone” to say the least: I’m on a machine I’ve never ridden, on a road I don’t know, not knowing where I am or where I’m going, with a helmet that’s 2 sizes too big and… it’s raining! Oh, and it appears we’re lost as the van driver keeps pulling over to the side of the road, asks a question of someone on the road, and then makes a U-turn.
As the S.H.E. has taught us, it could always be worse. We’re on our way to join the other RawHyde Adventure tourists to begin our Chase of the Dakar at a famous Estancia called La Paz. We’re told it’s a wonderful place, but we’re staying somewhere else tonight and we still can’t find it. We’re now well past the city of Cordoba, winding on a narrow two lane road through small villages in the pampas of Argentine.
Crazy as this sounds, there’s still lots of people up as we finally roll into the restaurant we’re suppose to have dinner at. Yes, our hosts arranged for a midnight dinner once we arrive. They are waiting for us and we indeed have a wonderful dinnner. Still don’t know the name of the town nor the hotel we eventually stay in.
Breaking News: We made it to the start of the Dakar Tour!
After a short ride this morning, we arrived at the Estancia La Paz, the gathering place for our group. Everyone is meeting here, getting their bikes and adding whatever accessories they want. We’re staying here tonight and will begin Chasing the Dakar tomorrow morning.