I decided to just put my head down and ride today. I filled my stomach with the muesli and four bananas I was carrying, then had a proper breakfast next door to my motel, buying fried bread, dahl and omelette for 35t (AU$0.50). This fuelled me for several hours until I stopped for lunch (rice dahl, beef). To reduce my need to stop and thus the likelihood of being accosted by locals too much, I made sure I was carrying enough water for the whole day. At mid-morning I pulled down a tiny side road to have a drink and eat the last coconut I was carrying, but, despite being off the main road, I still managed to attract a crowd. I didn’t stop again until lunch.

After lunch I rode for a few kilometres to get out of the tiny town in which I’d eaten, then parked up for a nap. I was only disturbed a few times, by people standing over me. I pushed on to the small town of Naogaon, where I spotted what I thought must be a residential hotel (no English signs) – a derelict looking building with windows appearing to be for different rooms. I was right. This one was 300t a night, a bit more expensive than the one in Natore, but my room had an attached bathroom. I have left my bike in a storage room downstairs. It’s the first time I have entrusted it completely to others.

I have just returned to my room after dinner. On the way to dinner I was approached by a man speaking fast Bengali and gesturing to the sky and saying the word photo. I blew him off as I had no idea what he was on about. After dinner he approached me again. This time I gave him a little more time. When I pulled out my camera at his insistence, he said words of prayer while making special hand gestures and hugging me first to the right then to the left. After he was done, he shook my hand and walked off.

Day 568 (pic)

Getting blessed?

Accommodation $ Hotel
Distance ridden today 102.93km
Average cycling speed 19.2kph
Total distance ridden 14,760km