Lost Again
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Saturday, November 25, 2017
By sharon oliver photography
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It couldn’t happen twice but it did.


Only the very unlucky, depending on your point of view, could end up spending the night in a brothel. By this time he’d had enough though. I don’t know if it was the heat or the dust or the flies or the travelling or everything but the final straw came with the sickness and diahorrea. I didn’t get it. I never do. Cast iron guts me. Ever since the Amoebic dysentery episode in Pakistan 20 years ago I’ve been immune.


After the heat of the desert in Merzouga we headed for the hills. The riding was good, passing through desert villages and gorges and finally up to the high point over the Tizi n’Tichka pass. It rained on an off. The river swelled and the water came up to my knees and down into my boots. He did his first river crossing. The road disappeared and became a mud and rubble track but you can’t fault these bikes. The CCM’s handled perfectly, loving it !! 


It became a struggle finding places to stay and theres only so many omelettes and buns you can eat.  I don’t mind so much but he’s missing a clean bed and a hot shower. We head for the coast to Essaouira but I think he’s pretty much given up by now. We found a good campsite, camping olive trees for 8 euros. He lies in the tent for 2 days groaning. I catch a local bus for 50p and explore the town. 

The next morning its decided that the only option is to head back to Spain and hope he’ll improve. After a full days riding we finally found a hotel. It was dark and the bouncers were big and the music was loud. Men were smoking and drinking alcohol. At first I thought it was a wedding party but the women in western clothing kept disappearing into the rooms and the music got louder and the bouncers looked shiftier. The red light above the door should have been a give away but it didn’t twig. Sometimes I’m a bit thick like that. I was glad of the music though, at least it drowned out the moans. It was a long night spent squatting mosquitoes and I was looking forward to breakfast. The bar reminded me of the Trades Club after a dance night when I used to do the cleaning. Broken glass, beer slops and fag ends. He gave us a baguette, some jam and one coffee cos women don’t drink coffee! Apparently. He shafted us for £40 but I was glad to go and made a swift exit. Hopeful that the day would improve. It didn’t. The CCM’s both ran out of fuel on the motorway. I managed to get to the services and fill my can. The only way back to him was the wrong way down the motorway on the hard shoulder. I made it but luckily a passing biker gave him a bit of fuel and all was well. Next stop Algeciras. 


Must have been bad in a previous life or summat. Something had to give me one last test. I rode my bike off the ferry. The panniers got caught in a table, the bike wobbled, I toppled over and smashed into a lorry. I didn’t hit the deck though so I was grateful to the lorry for softening my fall and I’m still smiling so I must have good karma. I quite fancy Russia for my next trip..


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