I pulled up the stakes today and took a lazily route out of Ushuaia. For the first time in five days it rained. Of course. When I’m going to ride. It wasn’t a hard pelting rain, just a nuisance. I didn’t like the pic I grabbed coming into town earlier in the week so I tried to grab another as the military police watched this silly gringo get his digital camera soaked while trying to grab some snapshot.
The winds were mile and soon the chilling rain dissipated. When I got into Rio Grande I was saddened to hear Graciela, the owner of the Argentina Hostel here was down with some sort of stomach illness. But this would be home tonight so I rolled Doc into the garage in back and unpacked my things. As hunger set in I set out across the street to a nice restaurant. While reading the menu outside I spotted a couple riders. One, Ramiro a Columbian on a V-Strom and the other, John riding a KTM from Luxembourg.
Luxembourg? That was a first. And it occurred to me that I needed to draft a list of all the different countries from which people I’ve met on this journey originated. It was an arduous task given the state of this old guy’s memory. But with my notes, fond memories and desire to make the list, I present it to you. All of the countries listed are from where travelers I’ve met began their journey’s — or where they call home. Of those countries I visited on this journey, I only include those from where I met someone outside their country; that is, traveling:
- Czech Republic
- New Zealand
- South Africa
- United States of America
I directed John and Ramiro to the Hostel and they soon walked back to the hotel and joined me for dinner. Ramiro, born of a Colombian father and American mother spoke good English. Reminding me a bit like Cheech Marin in his appearance he sat at the end of the table with a scarf wrapped around his neck and still outfitted in his heavy layered motorcycle gear. As the conversation progressed I couldn’t help myself, “Aren’t you hot, don’t you want to talk off your jacket?” Ramiro who introduced himself to me as Randy, insisted he was comfortable. Halfway through his salad he says, “Damnit Allan, I was doing okay until you asked if I was too hot.” He yanked off his jacket and we finished our dinner.
Ramiro had been traveling with a band of other Colombians, but had broken pack because he was eager to get back to Colombia. Mark, my new friend on the KTM from Idaho who I met in Ushuaia had ridden with Ramiro and his band a couple weeks before. But Ramiro and John wanted to get to Ushuaia. They would ride into the city I just left the next morning, while I would continue north in search of the almighty penguin.