I am so very relieved to be able to say that I have had a great day. It became clear that despite suffering through Giardia, I have retained the strength of my leg muscles. In fact, the rest was probably a good chance for my muscles to repair and strengthen. Whatever the case, I felt strong and healthy. I headed north out of Phidim to Jorsal, where I took a minor road off to the southwest. The road started as bitumen, but soon deteriorated into dirt. In my mind I had no major turns to make. I could just continue on the road all day and enjoy taking in the scenery rather than worry about getting lost. Oops. I learned my mistake after I spent ages climbing a sandy, rocky track to the top pf a ridgeline overlooking Tamor River. It was there that I had a lunch break and checked my progress via my phone’s GPS. I had a turn to make and I’d missed it. I was now heading into a relatively remote area, compared to my planned route.
At the same time as I realised my mistake, a motorbike carrying two guys rocked up. They joined me where I sat, which was an earthen platform that formed a lookout over the beautiful valley below. I mainly chatted to one of them, a guy called Roman. As I explained my predicament, Roman told me where this particular road leads. He also shared a couple of joints with me, containing ‘medicinal herb’ that was organically grown in the next valley over. Perhaps influenced by the effect of the smokes, I remained cavalier as I contemplated my situation and I decided to just forge on anyway. Roman was able to tell me that the road makes its way west. It will just take me deeper into the mountains I was hoping to get out of. Time will tell if I regret the decision, but if the ride continues to be as enjoyable as it was today, then I won’t be regretting it.
I think I really loved today because I was finally on the move again. Even so, the atmosphere of the environment was very pleasant and welcoming. There weren’t many houses, but those I saw were neat and beautiful with earthen walls, thatched rooves and clean yards. I pulled up stumps slightly earlier than planned when I came across a perfect place to camp to which I couldn’t say no. A short walking track led from the road to a flat grassed area beside a small shelter with a roof and bench seat, bordered by a stone wall. The place looks like a public picnic area and I couldn’t resist calling it home for the night. My stove performed well until I lifted my pasta to replace it with a pot of vegetables. The wind got in and blew out the flame. I tried twice to get it going again but failed. I gave up and ate the pasta with raw tomato, onion and radish. Now I’m in bed listening to the noises around me. There were some monkeys around when I made dinner and every now and then I hear them yelling in the distance.
|Distance ridden today||27.17km|
|Average cycling speed||7.8kph|
|Total distance ridden||15,478km|