Tuesday January 31, 2012, 55 km (34 miles) – Total so far: 1,236 km (768 miles)
A very relaxing ride, all flat and only 55 kms. We actually arrived quite early at Uvita and found a room in a small nice hotel, called the Tucan hotel. Uvita is a ridicolous small village of just a few houses, a supermarket and a bank with an ATM machine.
Monday January 30, 2012, 100 km (62 miles) – Total so far: 1,181 km (734 miles)
The drive with the bus was more or less o.k. Less because they had turned on the A/C to the maximum and you felt like in a freezer. It was fucking cold. I had to put on all my jackets and wrapped my cambodian scarf around my head.
Organizing the bus transfer to Paso Canoa (the border to Costa Rica) took us half day, the patient soul of Panama again showed its whole dimension. After breakfast we took a taxi to the bus station as you can buy your ticket only at the same day you want to travel.
We got up earlier this morning for we wanted to find a bike shop to maybe get a new tube for my wife`s bike and just see what`s about bikes in Panama….In our hotel they can`t help you with nothing, I don`t know from which planet they are, but surely they don`t know anything about Panama City.
We were so keen on visiting the famous Panama Channel that this was our first aim in the ranking of the sights.They have a visitor center right by the Channel, called „Miraflores“ and we took a taxi to go there (in Panama City everyone moves in Taxies as local buses are not very reliable and you have to tell the driver where you want to go and he drops you off there.
!–more–>Going to „Miraflores“ they drop you of 15min walking for example…). When we arrived, it was already crowded and you wait in an endless queue. (First you wait in the queue where you buy the tickets, after you wait in another queue to enter.) The upper floor you couldn`t even visit because it was under construction and there was only one floor left to see the ship passing.
Actually you were looking at a big watergate on an absolutely crowded visitor`s terrasse. Not a big deal, honestly. From there we went to „Casco Viejo“ the colonial part of Panama City, which is much nicer than the rest of the town. Always you have to bargain the price of the taxi before taking it, because there are no taximeters existing in Panama. Often they try to give you the „Gringo-Version“ of the real price.
„Casco Viejo“ is an absolutely charming place that shouldn`t be missed when you are in Panama City.
Tuesday January 24, 2012, 115 km (71 miles) – Total so far: 996 km (619 miles)
Again the Panamericana. We cycled about 20 km and flat tire number three occured at my wife`s bike. I really don`t know why she is so upset every time, because the one who has to fix it is poor Gerardo.
Fortunately she noticed it, when we were buying some stuff at a supermarket just on the roadside, and I decided to fix it right there because here they offered a very important thing: Shadow!! It didm`t take me so long because I just changed the tube and on we went.
Monday January 23, 2012, 75 km (47 miles) – Total so far: 881 km (547 miles)
Surprise, surprise! As we were ready to cycle on, my wife`s bike again had a flat tire. Nothing to do against it, we had to stay and I first fixed that damned tire again. Two flat tires in two days? She was kind of freakin`but man – shit happens, you got to stay cool. No problem, we just got on the road half past eight instead of seven. A little bit more sun-that`s all.
It was so good to sleep after he tough ride yesterday. Time to clean and check the bikes. My wife`s bike had a flat tire, Iguess it came from cycling on the shoulders yesterday, there was a lot of glass and other dirt.