Day 44 – Chirala to Bhimavaram

Today is going to be a  brief summary of whatever comes to mind quickly…just to let you know.

I started off a bit later than I have been recently because of a few more photos with the hotel manager.  This time he put on his “formal dress” and gave me a floral necklace/wreath arrangement which – after the photos – he wrapped around my handlebars and told me it would bring me good luck.  It is safe to say that I ditched them fairly promptly but it was a very nice gesture and much appreciated.

Yesterday I mentioned that I am asked where I am from about 30 times a day….I’ll admit, that was a bit of a guess.  Because of that, today I decided to count, and it came to 36 (give or take) so it turns out I did myself a bit of an injustice!  It was a fairly standard day in that regard but the number of photos I was asked for increased dramatically and I think I was probably stopped whilst riding at least 5 times.   Ideally they would ask me when I have already stopped, but I figure people aren’t going to be asking for photos or autographs for long, so I may as well be positive about it.   I was also stopped by two journalists which is a first.

India became more rural today and probably similar to what I was afraid I would face when coming here.  It would have made 100 miles a day pretty difficult had I not had two weeks here already.  The smell was not great for a lot of the day either…It seems that the side of the road was often used as a toilet.  Not exactly pleasant but I am surprised I haven’t seem more of that.  Shows my ignorance I guess.

Anyway, the day was fairly good.  I struggled for water at one point but that was the only problem really….until I reached my finishing point.    To cut a long story short, I spent over an hour cycling around Bhimavaram trying to follow wrong directions and very nearly got my tent out.   It pretty much destroyed my mood and has led to less sleep than I was hoping for, although I have calmed down now.

Numbers:

Distance: 117.54 miles / 189.2 km (not including the 4 km from my hotel this morning to get back to the route nor the hour spent riding around to find the hotel this evening.  I didn’t want them going towards my total).

Riding time: 8:04:34

Av. Speed: 14.6 mph / 23.4 km/h

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