26 September, 2012

Day 84, 120km: Popayan, la positive attitude

Today I managed to get breakfast! The view there was amazing as you can see below.

Parking inside the hotel? Try to do that with a car ... the place I ended up in was very "hospital like" if that means anything. Clean, spotless white rooms and walls. Pillows with the hotel's logo printed on the cover (those who checked-in at Bangkok Nursing Hospital will know what I mean). I was in the "surgery district" apparently. The crowd at the hotel was composed of young women with bandages on their noses and probably in other regions that I didn't have access to.
My breakfast buddies were two young couples from I-forgot-where "a 3 horas de Cali" who (if I understood correctly) came here to offer plastic surgery to their (not-so) loved ones. Cute!

Today I intended to go to Pasto. Google said 7H from Cali. People I asked gave me various answers, from 5H (pointing at the bike "con esa moto? se va rapido") to 8H (me: "la ruta es bueno?" "mas o menos ..." with a grin).
Not wanting to end-up at night once more, I re-routed for the closest city on my way south, Popayan. Plus it looked beautiful. A short 2 hours drive away, which meant I had time to shop for some groceries and various bike related stuff in Cali. Plus there was a Carrefour...

Tollways in Colombia
 Now you might remember how to go through a tollway "the Mexican way"? Stick to your right, avoid the barrier and any staff who might be in your way.
Well Colombians understood that very well and decided that highways would be free for motorcycles! Viva!
So there's a lane on the far right of the tollway only for us two-wheeled people.

Hill road on a sunny day = smile
Finally! Something I hadn't seen since ... well since Guatemala now that I think about it. Something that is vital to maintain a smile on my face. Something that instantly gives "la banane" under the helmet.
Well paved, wide mountain roads on a sunny day. After 3,000km of relatively shitty / extremely winding roads that was a blessing.

Reminded me of Thailand's north between Pai and Mae Hong Son. Yeah I know everything reminds me of Thailand.

Sorry for the power line. Still a nice landscape
Lots of farming/lumbering going on. Cute little villages. Great roads and unreasonable speeds.

Lunch stop, the view is pictured above!
Having stocked-up on food, I had all options available for lunch break. Another thing that puts "la banane" under the helmet is seeing a nice spot and deciding "I'm going to put today's restaurant right here" and just park on the side of the road.
So after this 3 weeks break I'm slowly but surely remembering all the little things that I unconsciously took the habit of doing and have to keep on doing to be enjoy the journey. Breakfast, music, "restaurant planting". Daydreaming will surely come back soon as well.

Popayan historical district, "the white city"
 Quickly made it to Popayan. The city's historical district is pretty with all these white houses.

The main plaza
Wandering around the streets, I remembered the wise words of Lorie, a French contemporary philosopher. "Il arrive parfois que ton moral se casse. Pour ca moi j'ai trouve un remede efficace. La positive attitude." Translation is futile, meaning transcends language with such profound lyrics.

The crowd gathers for dinner
So that's how I was reminded of the last item on my "good mood checklist." Wandering on foot through the city where I'm staying for the night.
So I now feel ready for the journey ahead!

After being back on the road, I now feel back on track.
Cheers everyone,

PS: I don't think I have talked about food before but here they have some empenadas (small pies) with potato, peanuts and spicy sausage served in banana leaves. Delicious. Empenadas pipian. 

1 comment:

  1. Oh putain! C est anonymous qui va pas etre content!!!