On a long journey like this one, there are times that you need a break. We decided to hang out in Quito for a 5-6 days. We had a few things we needed to take care of and though it would be good to miss the weekend traffic in a few of the spots we are going to ride to next week.

James had a tire that he plugged in Columbia but it started leaking. So we decided it probably needed an inside plug. We stopped by and asked Court at Freedom Riders and he directed us down the street to a moto shop. It is one of the times I really missed my camera The owner of the shop looked at the tire, spoke with his mechanic and told us that it needed to go to a nearby tire shop. He called an older gentleman over, who promptly started rolling the rim and tire down the street.

Off he went rolling the tire down the sidewalk, across the street right through the middle of people…. He was fast. Quito is over 9,000 feet and we had a hard time keeping up. Would have made a great video Missing my camera for sure!

Got to the repair shop (photos later when we go back with a camera). Nice neat little shop. The guy looked at it and got right to work. Once he got the tire off, you could see a large nail. Not sure if it was from the first tire puncture or just happened to hit right near the plug? He took care of the tire patch, and then the “little guy” grabbed the rim a dn tire, and started off down the street. We had a real good laugh. I will forever have a vision of the guy roiling it along and James trying to keep up..

Here he is after he wheeled it back to our hostel (and he wanted no money for helping us! We tried ) You can see how big James looks next to him. Imagine the scene; as two big white guys are chasing after him down the street while he rolled this repaired rim and tire

Both James and I started feeling bad yesterday and had soreness all over, fever and sniffles. We took a trip to the grocery store to get some cold meds, and food. Was bummed when they do not sell soup like Chicken noodle or Tomato …. Had to settle for some really bad chinese noodles in a styrofoam cup. Slept most of the day and will take today to rest as well. First time I have had any sort of cold on the trip.

Just a few comments from my Ride report. I am double posting the content of my blog on ADRrider.com in the Ride Reports section. It is a large motorcycle community from all over the world. It is very interactive and I have had some really amazing interactions, support, help, and encouragement from this community. I am approaching 500,000K views of my ride as people all over follow along and comment. I would like to share a couple recent comments, as they encourage me as I continue my journey.

Hi Mark, started to read your RR and (sad) background information yesterday 8 a.m. lying in bed with a bad influneza. Did not stop reading till 2 o’clock in the morning, slept till 9 and started to read again. Its now close to midnight and I am ready until you drop the next lines. So I read everything, saw all vids and all pics and all posts in more or less one go. Took a while as I am not a native speaker and had to use the dictionary from time to time.

Awesome RR! I really thank you for taking me with you on this amazing trip. I am an ol fart but learned a lot about the US, Mexico, Colombia, Ecuador etc. Brilliant!

You live the dream many others (including myself) have, even when the reason for your decision was a very sad one. I’d bet that even if I could afford such a trip would not have the balls to try. Its amazing me that you go and have no target and you are not looking for something, you just go and see what happens. One can see that the further you go the less you are planning and I think that is a good thing. Its a pity that Idahosam isnt joining you as I really like the guy, think he is a cool and funny guy and he has my respect for joining you quite a while (and no one thought that you are his dad)

All the others you met and who joined you for a while seemd to be really cool and tough guys too, no doubt.

I will follow you virtually and am looking very much forward reading your next posts. And now go and get a new camera, I like your pics. And I’ll copy that brilliant idea with the flexible Manfrotto tube

By the way its annoying to see hundreds of photos of lovely food, crispy chicken, huge pieces of any kinda meet while trying desperatly loosing weight

I’ll be present in spirit with you and I keep my fingers crossed for you and those who ride with you!

Take care

Steve from Austria

and another ….

Like so many others, I came across this RR only recently, and have spent the better part of the last two days reading and savoring every entry. I served in the Peace Corps near Popayan many (many) years ago, so your posts and videos about Colombia were particularly good; I only wish you’d had a chance to visit Cali.

Colombia – and the Colombians – are doing very well, and I’m glad to see it.

Thanks for the incredible job.

Just though this was funny.

With all the stuff on the internet…. Seen too many versions of this, so I just simplified it

As we grow older in our minds we are still young. As I ride, and hanging out in hostels, I realize things have changed a bit in the past 20 + years