Quito

Here are some miscellaneous pics from  my week in Quito.

Meet Juan Jose, Argentinian TV producer. I said I was hungry and he cooked me an omelet. God I love motorcycle men that cook! (Lucky for me I have a great motorcycle man that cools already waiting for me back in the States…)

How cool is this? Ricardo races with his daughter. Here’s her bike with all the new graphics of her sponsor. hey! I am sponsored, too. Here’s my bike:

oh yeah.

Quito is one of those funnel points for travelers. there were buckets of us this week in Quito, and we all met for dinner one night, 8 of us all rounded up by Diego the mechanic.

I really liked Joe and Taz, a Canadian couple riding through Canada, USA, CA And SA on their two wee 250’s. We’d been sending emails back and forth for a while hoping to meet up, and finally were able to do so in Quito. They needed a travel break, and so rented an apartment in Quito for a month. While conversing, we discovered we all really missed eating vegetables. I mean, while they are abundant in all the markets, generally as travelers it’s difficult to trust that the veggies you are eating are safe. locals are used to the local bacterias, while us north Americans are just traveling through and never really get accustomed. So our veggies need to be washed in Chlorox and with good soap and water to be “safe”.

Taz spoiled me the next night when I went over t their apt. for dinner.

Salad! Holy Crap!

I crashed the party and brought Ricardo and Luis Felipe with me sice we’d been out riding all day together.

Diego also came.

Taz kept teasing Diego about women.  I wanted to help out too. He’s so CUTE! And so earnest. And such a nice guy. And a motorcycle mechanic. He’s also quite the entrepreneur, having started a company with a partner, they make motorcycle travel luggage. He loves salsa, and if I can remember right, the perfect woman for him has to be shorter than him, ride a motorcycle, love salsa, and something else I cannot remember. Oh yeah, he has a great family too. His Mom makes the best coffee int he universe–and to just so happens that she even makes it with the family’s very own coffee beans!

The next day at Diego’s shop.

Funny, I did not think I needed anything done to the bike. I just stopped by to say hello but he insisted on rolling my bike into the shop, and took a look. The more we talked, the more little irritating things I was realizing I was living with, just little things, but irritants nonetheless. Diego set about fixing them one by one.

1. He found that the Suzuki dealer in Panama City when they put my bike back together the put the cables on the WRONG side of the wheel.

[GRR! I forgot about this. (In Peru, later in my story, I will find another GRAVE mistake they made, and have a dangerous breakdown). ]

2. I am ashamed to say I had been nursing a slow leak in the back tire. He insisted on  taking the tire off and bringing it to a llanteria,

3. The glue in my Oxford heated grips had given up way back in Mexico, and I was riding with some wires wrapped around my grip. They were uncomfortable on my hand and still were not 100% effective from keeping the throttle from slipping around. He removed and re-glued!

3. What the heck, its only been 2000 miles since my last oil change, but we’re working on the bike, so we change that, too.

4. What’s the matter with you woman? He cleans my air filter too.

5. He goes over every bolt on my bike and tightens everything.

6. He brings me  to meet him mom and feed me lunch. Yum!

7. He brings me all over town trying to find fuel line filters for Bolivia, and also a new rear tire tube, a 17″ one because my bike is *special*.

Another day I go to the Escuela de Motos and meet up with Ricardo. Twisted Throttle has sent me some miscellaneous bolts that I’d managed to rattle loose and break, and one of Ricardo’s staff goes with me and walks me through the customs process. Three hours later I have my bolts and head back over to Diego’s.

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Another day in Quito, Luis Felipe gave me the motorcyclists tour of Quito. It was a job trying to keep up with him in City traffic!

One of the main tunnels in town is closed, and we are trying to figure out how to reroute. It’s common to ask the taxi drivers for help.

My bags are off, so it’s easy (-er) to follow him.

At one point he picks up a kid that’s wanting a ride to the other side of town, where we happen to be going.

The kid is really cute, especially as he is getting the ride of his life. ia m sure hes never been on a motorcycle that big (1100 cc). His day gets even brighter when he realizes the other motorcycle is bring ridden by a WOMAN.

I lost Luis Felipe in traffic, but I HAD to get this shot…

And we finally arrive at el Panecillo.

There’s a 45 meter tall aluminum Mary, I am told she is the only Mary in the world to have Wings. She is stepping on the chained serpent, conquering the world’s evils. Luis Felipe and  climb up the inside and marvel at the vie wof Quito.

Unfortunately my camera battery dies and no more pics for the day.

Grr.

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