Thursday, 19 July 2012

Back to UB

.Met three Slolvaks last night doing a tour of Mongolia and how fed up were they? They had been going for 17 days with a Mongol guide  and in a van and told us tales of the guides arguing and not translating stuff properly, being stranded in the middle of nowhere because of punctures and the driver not having spares
( although he is a local) and terrible accommodation and food. They seemed OK too, not precious or anything, so we're lucky to be doing our own thing and not dependent on anybody or anything. We are just fine as we are.

 Got away from this desolate town town early-ish morning and went all of 1km before we had to stop, then  twice more within the next two kms. 

Nadine's " I bloody hate this place and want to leave right now" face.

The front tyre needed inflating, then the front mudguard needed sawing off because it was catching on the front tyre, then just stuff. 

The blacktop ran out far too soon and it was corrugations all the way - real vicious ones that were tiring to ride. Throw in a bit of sand and gravel and you have an idea of how hard and how slow our day was. We camped back in the hills near to where we'd stayed on the way down but we still managed 180 kms. 

We picked up firewood en route, I crashed (for the seventh time - just a minor slow speed sand off) and Nads needed a sleep in the shade of  the bike because of her hang over, and was woken by a local family on Chinese bikes, wanting to check out the whities in their 'hood.

 They were cool though and we gave the small girl a bar of soap as a gift. Sounds pretty mundane but it's not something that they usually have. Nad's front wheel is atrocious, flopping about about like a dead fish, but there was no choice other than to ride both bikes and hour about to save both of us getting too tired.

This morning we carried on although we didn't get up till noon because it was raining. A shepherd came up and chatted after he had watched Nads pee through is telescope - although we didn't realise the last bit until he was chatting to us. Gave him my dagger/hammer mini tool and he seemed well chuffed, thanking us profusely although that might have been the sight of Nads doing her thing that pleased him more.

We eventually found a good road to UB although rather biazarrely, it was blocked every 400m or so with earth barricades so we just rode through and around them The little scooter surpassed itself and the Chinese bike did pretty well too. ( can't get the video to work - think its the poor connection here. Sorry!)

Reached UB late afternoon, still raining, and we were cold and hungry so went straight to a hotel UB traffic was gridlocked as usual but it seemed worse, probably because the police were in charge. Honestly, when they are directing traffic, its like cheer leaders waving those stick things about. Talk about camp and useless.

Will hopefully meet up with Iain and Debz tomorrow. We haven't seen them since Istanbul so it will be great to see them.