I am sorry about the lack of communication, my phone keeps mysteriously running out of credit. Instead of ruining Sprocket on the less than stellar Mongolian roads we reversed direction and ended up in Ulaanbaatar 10 days early! I have already parted ways with Sprocket who is currently parked with the other donated go help vehicles. It feels very strange to think that my lifestyle of the previous 14 weeks is now over... and it was sad to see the last of Sprocket. As for me, O am going to see a book Ger tomorrow which is one of the Go Help projects. Other than that I am at a loose end. I am completely ready to start my life in Canada, but have 10 days to wait! Thank you all for your support over my trip... in the darkest moments it was all that kept me going :-)
Step 1:Travel to Irkutsk in Siberia.
Step 2:Wear nice clothes, put on deodorant.
Step 3:Walk around waterfront until you are approached my beautiful Russian girls who speak some English.
Step 4:Walk around waterfront for 3 hours with girls.
Step 5:If you get on, go for dinner. If not, repeat steps 3 to 5.
Step 6:If you still get on after dinner, marry them. If not, start next day at step 2.
My next helmet needs a Russian fist rating! I was, resting on the side of the road when a Lada pulls off the road, clipping Sprocket as it does. 3 Vodka smelling, tourist hating Russians get out, and it's clearly communicated that I should give them all my money. Yup, they're kinda mugging me! I say NO and throttle Sprocket out of their grabbing hands. I have to cut this short... so I was swiped by their car, ankle caught it (bit sore), and 3 tipsy Russians are no match for a motorcycle gear clad kiwi. My helmet came off second best though, no visor anymore, so no rain riding!
I have managed to stay in the sunny eye of the massive storm that has been plaguing me for the two previous days as I travelled today. Pieces of my stuff have dried out, but my boots and gloves remain sopping. I know one of these days I will wake up and my pruney extremities will be prematurely permanent! Karma came in and snapped another piece of Sprocket an hour ago. The road as a whole is great, but there are really rough sections that they seem to have forgotten about! I say that because unlike the rest of their almost pedantic verbose signage, without warning the tarmac stops!
Ok Siberia, don't you think you've had enough rain now? You've already got lush green everywhere I look; couldn't you just let it up just a little after 2 solid days? The walls of water kicked up by the other vehicles made me laugh at first, but my dry bags are only rated waterproof up to total immersion. Apparently they think I am swimming as evidenced by my wet clothes and sleeping bag! Two more days until I hope to reach shelter.