On the muddy road to Uyuni, Bolivia (4100m/13400ft) on the third day of 24hr/day of non-stop freezing rain/hail I decide while significantly stuck in the mud that about all I can do is practice positivity. I start laughing when my altitude frazzled brain decides that all the frozen snut running down my face really isn´t all that bad. I feel so pretty, I think to myself and begin convincing myself that the dripping snut quite nicely complements my high tech plastic garbage bags. My cold hands and feet are tucked tightly underneath my ´oh so sexy´ plastic bag fashion statement. My weeks theme song for cycling into Uyuni during the rain season of Bolivia, the song lyrics "If you´ve got to be dumb, you got to be tuff", spirt from my frozen sticky lips.
A few hours later while super extra significantly stuck in the mud…
I sure am grateful that the buses honk with the vengeance of a projectile missile before barreling towards me while I wade across rivers up to my knees. It is important to practice gratitude I think to myself as I heave Pandemic´s back end sideways in the river´s mud with about as much force as I can muster. I surprisingly succeed in sending the loaded back wheel out of the way, just in time to duck before getting splashed with the gritty dirty river. The words to the song ´´I am so sexy and I know it´´ bounce through my head like a spastic eighties rocker. The frozen snut continues to uncontrollably roll down my face. My attempts at actually using a tissue prove futile. 3 days of continuous frozen rain has drenched the inside of my pockets and their pockets. However, my rain jacket needed a good cleaning anyway. All this mud is moisturizing, great for my complexion, it IS all the rage at the local spa, I think to myself as the bus barrels by, the dry driver happily waves through his dirt stained window. The mud chuncks stick to my face, the chuncks are not as coarse or sharp as the last ones, things are looking up, I chuckle to myself.
The following morning somewhere near Uyuni, Bolivia, it is still raining.
Wow, que bonita (how beautiful) this morning´s foggy rain sure is sparkly...how puuurdy, I think to myself as I crouch down over my bicycle, my cold wet gloved hand secure my tent inside my pannier. Pandemic The Magic Bicycle is covered with mud but my rohloff gears are hanging tuff and ready for the final kilometers into Uyuni. Ahh, Uyuni, land of popcorn, lentils, apple juice, I laugh at my hungry self. The last few weeks at altitude has considerably shrunk my 103 pound(47kilo) frame. I am still HUGE compared to an Asian, I chuckle as I tilt my hooded head to the right, then peer to the left, my tracks that led me to last evenings camping spot in a gorgeous patch of mud have disappeared in the nights rain.
Ah fuckity, this can not be true, am I lost? In the distance I can see what looks like a road drainage pipe and/or rail road tracks. They must lead to Uyuni I think to myself as I begin dragging my bicycle in a large circle through the mud for ½ kilometer looking for the road. The landscape appears endless, a beautiful endless sea of adventurous mud sure to entertain as I carry on north through Bolivia. A country full of ´´mui adventura (lots of adventure)´´and a beautiful kind hearty people who are quickly warming my heart and reaffirm everything that I love about bicycle touring in Bolivia.