Monday, February 18, 2008

From Miami to Salvador, the Long Way

I often lament my almost daily distractions from whatever it is I have to do, but I must confess that today's was kind of cool.

Last night we got a phone call from Vera, a friend of Evani's who lives in southern Bahia. She had a guy she wanted me to talk to, an American who couldn't understand them very well. Turns out he wasn't an American, but actually an Argentinian who has been living in Florida for ten years. He has been all the way from Florida to the tip of Argentina by motorcycle, and is now on his way back. I told him to give me a call when he arrived in Savador, which he did.

I told him to meet me in the Praça da Piedade, and I went looking for the big motorcycle. It was a Honda Goldwing, a bike I have never seen in Salvador before. Immense. Most bikes here don't run over 250 cc's. I've seen a couple Honda Shadows and there is one Harley I see from time to time here in the Largo, but nothing like this. And it was getting lots of attention.

I'm pretty freaked out by motorcycles since my bad experience in Australia trying to do more or less the same thing he was doing, and I had never met the guy and Salvador is terrifying to drive in even in a car, but I had to take the opportunity to ride this thing, even if it was just the short distance from where I met him to our street, where I'd arranged for him to stay at our friend's house. It made sense actually, because it's a complicated route to drive even if the distance is short to walk. So I did- with the whole city staring. We stopped at one traffic light and two people took pictures of the motorcycle with their cell phones. It was a riot. And it was fun- I can only imagine what it's like to ride something like that on the open road.

I survived the trip, and even Ruan got a little taste out in front of the house. I set him up with a place to stay, and about an hour ago he paid us a visit and I told him some places he should really visit on that big old bike- the Chapada Diamantina foremost on the list- he'd never heard of it. I wished him well and off he went.

No comments: