Saturday, 30 August 2014

Day 62 Friday August 29th about 500 miles from Vladivostok

Three people went to bed last night at reasonable time, and one stayed up talking and drinking with Vladimir the TV engineer.
He then came to bed very drunk and woke everyone else up to invite them to go ice fishing with Vladimir next year. This invite apparently included his girlfriend who is called Wendy!

We went over to the adjacent cafe for breakfast which consisted of fried eggs, bread and coffee.

Then on the road to make progress to Vladivostok.

After about two hours Paul pulled over to the side of the road because he could feel vibrations like a tapping feeling coming up through the footrest. On examination he found that the rear sprocket had lost all but one of the nuts holding the sprocket to the wheel, and that the bolts were trying to come out and starting to catch on the swinging arm! This was a close call because had the loose bolts come out the rear sprocket would have entangled with the rear wheel, caused a total lock-up of the back wheel, done a lot of damage and probably have caused Paul to loose control and have an accident at speed!

We took some bolts from the other bikes to get enough bolts back into Paul's sprocket and will keep close attention on whether they start to come loose again!

Later the front riders decided to stop at a cafe for a meal and Geoff was late seeing them slow down to turn, he put his front brake on strongly and could feel the knobbly tyres grip the road, and the next minute he had a puncture of the front wheel. When the tube was removed later the valve had ripped itself out of the inner tube!

We went into the cafe and unfortunately there were four men inside who were very drunk. They came over to enquire about our journey, and quickly became a nuisance. They interrupted our ordering of food, kept trying to give us vodka when we didn't want any because we were riding, and sitting in our booth when we were wanting to eat our food.
Paul and Dave decided to get away from them by going outside and started to repair the punctured tyre on Geoff's bike. The next minute the drunken men were trying to get involved and literally insisting that they know how best to remove the tyre and replace the inner tube. In the end we let them repair the tyre because it was the least hostile option. If we had told them to piss off and leave us alone we believe it could have got nasty. Finally the tyre was repaired and we left as quickly as possible!!
They had a young boy with them who held the bike whilst the bike was being repaired, and the drunken men were insisting we give the boy a one US dollar note for his help. In the end we again chose to ignore the offensive manner of their request and happily gave the boy the dollar.

Throughout the day we have seen a steady procession of army vehicles all making their way westward.

We managed to cover over 400 miles and late on found accommodation again in a four bed dorm type room in a truck stop place at the side of the road.

More later

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

No comments:

Post a Comment