Today marks the end of my first week biking in Cuba with over 360 miles biked and according to my InReach 320 tracking points sent which means I have been travelling for just over 53 hours. The InReach seems to be working well with Sally, Nick, Obliquepanic and The TruffleHound all giving favorable comments about the system although I guess they must wonder why there are quite so many stops en-route!
I left Club Amiga really early at sunrise on Wednesday to try and reach Santiago. However at a beach just before Santiago I made the fatal mistake of going for a swim, the water is way, way to warm so it wasn’t refreshing at all, some guy on the beach told me about the homestay which overlooked it so after 51 miles and over 10 hours I quit and stayed the night. The day was very tough and I walked up some of the hills as it seems quicker and less effort (plus I’m scared stiff of the chain snapping with all my tools stupidly left in Havana)
This morning (Thursday 12th) I left at sunrise with no breakfast as the host wasn’t up until I was halfway up the drive we had a bit of a do about the price with her insisting my dinner last night was $5 and not included in my $20 – I made it clear what I thought of her and left her theaagreed $20! I quickly made it to Santiago and happened on the Hotel Casa Grand in the centre with its all you can eat breakfast for $10. A couple car touring from Newcastle had a chat plus a French couple (living in Zurich) the poor girl had fallen off with a grazed leg and face. The folks on this side of Santiago are nowhere as near as friendly and one guy in La Mayo even slung a piece of fruit at me! The road side stands no longer sell the delicious refresco home made iced juices etc also the roadside animals have changed from pigs and goats to cows. The last 10 miles were biked in a torrential downpour with much lightening and thunder so I didn’t arrive in Guantanamo until after dark. I couldn’t face a homestay so booked into Hotel Mari at $41 per night slap bang in the centre of party central, I’m totally sure Iwill sleep throught it all.
Over 67 miles biked in 12 hours.
The next few days are going to be even hillier according the map pinned up outside.
All my rides can be found on Strava https://www.strava.com/athletes/2409043