Archive for May, 2009

The wrestler 2

Friday, May 22nd, 2009
The wrestler 2

Granada, Nicaragua, may 22th 2009,

Sorry folks for the delay in my blog messages. Life is exhausting here, the heat is intense. So fixing the bike takes a lot of time. Finally released from Coca-Coco, I go and look for a better mecanic. I search all over in the barrios of Granada, barrios are the suburbs where the ´poor & dirty´ live and those who can just make ends meet, no paved roads, just animals and houses in variety of OK to plate cabins. No problem for me in daytime, in the night a no go-area because of drunks (cheap home brew liquor, last year in one month 144 dead due to bad liquor) or junkies (glue sniffers). I don´t find a suitable mecanic. I do find the electro guy who helped Coco and so managed to screw up my part. He is an expert in wind fans by looking at his ´shop´, but not capable for my part. In the end, Jimmy Three Fingers brings about the solution. He goes to the States for a few days to visit his parents. I find a part in Ohio (Flatland Motorcycles, thank you for excellent service) and they manage to get it in time in Florida. With the new part I rebuilt the generator myself. Anything that can go wrong, goes wrong. Missing screws, wires are broken and the new part is just somewhat longer than the old one. Finally, on last saturday I have it all working. Just in time for a testride to Leon (picture) and beach. The ride from Leon to the beach is a hell ride, the signs said there would be construction, it turned out they broke away the whole road, so nothing but sand and lots, loads of rocks, for 15 miles! In the night it rains, so back through mud and rocks. The bike behaves perfect, my generator charges, life is good!

Coming days I will be preparing the bike for the next stage (rain season will start one of these days)and there probably will be a ´ET go home´-party, Nica-gringo humour: ET= Euro Trash go home-party. I wish I could tell all the jokes when I go on my bicycle allover town, by the way the gringo love my stories but love even more to make fun of me, I don´t mind.

For the whole story, please use the translation services on the Dutch text. I can´t wait to find the time to do you folks justice and make a proper full translation, but until then I really am sorry.

The wrestler

Tuesday, May 5th, 2009
The wrestler

Granada, Nicaragua, may 5th

Waving me off in Granada takes a few days. Starting on wednesday at the motorcycle club, friday with Wayne eating fish with little teeth from the sweet water lake, going over in a big party at saturday night at Jimmy’s restaurant. He plays sixties, rock ‘n roll & country. A variety of people show up, I seemed to have gathered quite a bizarre collection of Gringo’s, Nica-Gringo’s & Nica’s in the few weeks that I stayed here. The whole human spectre is present, a fitting statement says: Nicaragua, land of the wanted & unwanted. On sunday Jimmy, Brian and myself go to the Hippica in San Marcos. The whole town is closed for th annual horse parade. The motorcycle club has a deal with one of the restaurants, if we show up on our bikes and park them in front, we have free food & drinks all day long. Great! In the evening we terurn, but it takes time. Brian’s light goes down, Jimmy’s rear wheel sprocket turns loose and in the dark we wrench with the light of some mobile phones, my bike falls over on the wind. When we finally enter Granada my generator goes down. This is the third time since the start of this roadtrip in Alaska. There are two days left before my import permit for the bike expires!

On monday I start with my permit. With Brian I hop onto the bus to Managua. From the offices of Immigracion, Policia Transito Nacional (national traffic police) we end up with Aduana (customs). On tuesday I have to come back. On the appointed time they are closed! Later I learn that it is custom to show up two hours in advance. On wednesday I finally receive my permit. Time for the bike.

Following advice I go to a local mecanic who wrenches on Harley’s. We make a deal and start working. As expected my armature within the generator broke down. Coco, the mecanic who looks like if he could be Maradona’s twin brother, needs more money to get the armature rewinded. Thursday everything will be fixed. Thursday turns into friday, turns into saturday turns into monday. In the weekend I hear stories about Coco’s cocaine habits. On tuesday more money is needed. To make matters worse Coco’s lying about doing tests etcetera when I notice that they just fucked up my armature, so no tests possible. Nighttime I make my decision. I want my bike out. But to say it rudely, he has got me by the balls. My bike and parts are in his dirt floor shop. Now it’s my turn to lie. I make up a story about commitments next week in Panama and I manage to get the bike out. Then Coco disappears and I don’t have my parts. His helpers (12 and 7 years old, no school for them!) don’t know where the parts are. We look all over. I even search in his bedroom (big word for a bed and giant tv screen in a corner of the shop separated by curtains). Nothing. Eventually Coco shows up again. With my parts. He wants a lot of money for his work. We negotiate and I can leave. But I am worse off than before, they screwed up my armature!!!