June 13, 2009 GMT
Screw PETA.

31.5.09. Pisco, Peru

cu nort hen sign.JPG

The plan - come to Pisco and go ape on Lord Cocktail, the Pisco Sour. I hit the oddly-named Afro Cafe and suck down the first one. It's nectar with balls. The second one's nearly as good, but halfway through the third one I'm all "no more, dude" and "nuff lemon juice already". I scoot, muy rapido, and drop anchor at Taberna Don Jaime, which looks like Julius Caesar's favourite boozer - wine and vines all over the walls and ceiling - and tuck into an icy Cuzqueña. (The guide book says "never go out in Pisco alone after dark". It probably says the same thing about Margate in the England guide, but I leave my credit card at the hotel just in case).

There's a sign in Don Jaime's that reads "Las promeses con vino se olvidalo en el camino" which means, I think, "promises made with wine are forgotten on the road". Damn straight, DJ! Eh, what was the question again?

Anyway, Lima tomorrow - home of Paddington, the Lima bean (I guess) and, er, Jan Leeming. Perhaps. Tally ho! And the devil take the hindmost!

There are some lovely doggies in Peru. Wuffly and soppy, if a little diseasy-looking. There are also some utter goons, who like to run to within an inch of your front wheel, snarling and foaming. I SWEAR TO GOD - the next one that tries it will feel the full force of a 50mph Hein Gericke boot-tip on its idiot snout. Man's Best Friend that, you bum-sniffing oik. Let's see how much you enjoy gnawing your bone with no teeth. Try digging it up with broken paws, you cankerous, un-evolved, co-dependent little bastard.

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2.6.09. Lima, Peru.

Two nights in Lima will have to do. It's expensive and shrouded in cloud, and there are beaches up north. The hotel recommended to me by Norton Jeff is full and I end up, having ridden past the Crowne Plaza twice with flirty gaze, at something calling itself a "Youth Hostel", which is actually a very nice hotel - and so it should be at $36. Anywhere else in Peru it'd be $15. I nip out for live music ´n´ drinks at Jazz Zone and get stiffed for a $6 "cover charge" for each band. Humph. Woulda been nice to have been warned beforehand.

The next day is all about the footwear shopping for both me and Her Ladyship. Four pairs of socks for me - Peruvian cotton; marvellous - replacing the threadbare four I bought in BA, and a new front tyre (a Pirelli Scorpion since you ask) for 'er outdoors. $45 - a bargain! The rest of the stuff on my list, top of which has to be an urgent visit to a laundry, will have to wait. No hay problema! *pinches nostrils shut*

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Talking to a motorbike is stupid and pointless isn't it? But, hell, I challenge you to ride one 10,000 miles across the continent of your choice and not start doing just that. We bang over a pothole and I pat the tank and say "sorry darling". I promise oil-changes out loud. I remind this lump of metal, plastic and rubber, when things get weird, that "I told you we were going on an adventure". Never say anything like "what an excellent motorcycle you are" though. That's a magic spell that causes something to break, however much you believe that Homo Superstitio is an evolutionary mid-point between flint-arrowed, mammoth-bothering cave-thug, and facted-up, Spock-a-like future person.

Posted by Simon Fitzpatrick at June 13, 2009 08:55 PM GMT

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