Thank you Margaret and Mom for sending messages on the blog. Margaret, I read your message last night. I don’t think there are too many Port Jackson’s in this part of the world but there is water hyacinth in Lake Nicaragua which might be indigenous in Central America. There certainly are plenty of trees and the soils seem to be fairly productive particularly around the volcanoes where the soil properties stimulate the growth of dense vegetation.
In particular Costa Rica is closer to the equator than Nicaragua and Honduras and has more rainfall. Often rainforest soils tend to be acidic and not good for cultivation but there was plenty of crop farming in parts of Costa Rica where we have cycled. According to my father a large portion of Central America was once owned by the American Fruit Company but now the land is privately owned by peasants and commercial farmers. However the food you eat here lacks variation and usually consists of rice and beans. Dad hates this but I don’t mind.
Now onto the Spanish survival camp. Today we managed to arrange for a taxi to go to Tegucigalpa which is 35km each way. I can tell you that nobody speaks English and you have to use hand signals to explain what you want to buy. Eventually we managed to find oil to use on the chain in order to assist us to change gears. But it was a fair ordeal.
Between arriving at our hotel in Valle de Angeles and breakfast this morning, I must have slept for about 13 hours and today is a day of recovery. We know that we have another tough 4 days in Honduras before our next rest day and the countryside here looks very rugged and mountainous. All the distances are over 100km. The fourth day is 140km but all on tarmac. There will be on average 2000m climbing on each of the next 4 days but if Dad and I can get our bikes in order, we should manage the distances.
This is an incredible experience but an energy sapping one indeed. There can be no laissez-faire attitude as we will need to push down the barriers in order to stay in contention for EFI status by riding every day, every kilometre.
It was an amazing result by the Proteas to draw the second test and I think it was a good decision for Ricky Ponting to retire. I can find out cricket scores on the internet which I will now do.
All the best to all readers and friends. I will keep you updated as often as possible.