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feeding frenzy

BOLIVIA: UYUNI

One of the things that I enjoy a lot about cycle touring is being able to eat as much as you like of whatever you like. A family sized pizza? No, problem. Chocolate by the box? Go for it. Breakfast, second breakfast, elevenses, lunch, an afternoon snack, ice-cream, two servings for dinner. It doesn’t even touch the sides.

We come to shore at Colchane and, after seeking out lunch, have a short break in the shade where this dog takes a shine to Sarah.

From Colchane, on the edge of the salar, it is still a 25 kilometre ride to Uyuni on a busy sandy corrugated road. At Uyuni we look around for the cheapest, nicest hotel and decide on the Hotel Avenida, a concrete edifice that won the Rotary award for the best building sometime in the 70s. The hotel is cool and I would stay there again but the staff are distinctly malevolent. As we prepare to go out to dinner, the hotel witch ...

... is performing strange rites in the central courtyard.

One (perhaps the only) good reason to hang around Uyuni for a few days is Harriet and Neil's arrival in town...

... which is a fine excuse for celebration and extra gluttony. We succumb to the lure of the gringo pizza restaurant where we try to remember formulae that will assist in determining which size pizza offers the most calories for the fewest bolivianos. Do two small pizzas provide cheaper pizza per square inch than a family sized pizza? These are the kind of questions that concern cycle tourists.

We finally decide on a medium sized pizza per person ....

... and when they arrive they quickly disappear down the hatch.

Next, stocking up for the road ahead. Sublimes, a confection of fairly indifferent chocolate from Nestle, are redeemed mostly by the presence of whole peanuts. They have developed a disturbingly strong pull in our small group and we have started buying them by the box. We scared the girl in the shop.

Shopping trip done, the pile of food...

... needs sorting...

... into individual rations. Each pile represents 10 days of food for one person. Carrying fresh fruit and vegetable is an extravagance, weight-wise, but the difference it makes to general well-being is massive. The base of the pile, however, is formed by pasta, rice, oats and a packet or two of crackers. Treats (aside from the chocolate) include raisins, salami, honey, a few tins of tuna, and some tomato paste. And don't forget the most important item of all - coffee! James tirelessly scours Uyuni for passable coffee. It is two days before he achieves his goal and they pass anxiously.

Shopping done, what to do...? Go out for lunch, of course.

Friends and food. Isn’t that what the good life is all about?

{ 2 } Comments

  1. Cass | December 1, 2013 at 5:12 pm | Permalink

    Yum.
    And so glad that Bolivia doesn’t herald the end of Sublimes…

  2. anna | December 6, 2013 at 9:57 pm | Permalink

    Yes, happily Sublimes can still be had in Bolivia, although generally a little more expensive… somewhere between 2 (exceptionally) and 4 bolivianos.

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