Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Near Robat Sang

I still felt a little off this morning. Moreover I wasn't feeling enthusiastic about cycling. I was getting sick of the limited variation in my diet, changing it in Iran is difficult with the lack of variety in the small markets. I thought more & more of the things I could get at home, I even daydreamed about walking down the Albert Hein aisles.

This all put me in a bad mood by the time I arrived in the first town of the day, Torbat-e Heydariyeh. It was quite a large place. The road into town through the outskirts was lined with workshops dealing with vehicals, this has been the norm in Iran as well as Turkey. It's through their heroic work that antiquated petrol or diesel guzzling continue to live to pollute Iran.
It's always possible to see when the centre of a town approaches when other shops start appearing.

I found an Internet café, the only one in town (against how many car repair shops?). It had 10 computers sharing a dialup line! Fortunately I was the only customer. As I was finishing up a guy comes over, sits down & asks to be able to interview me, he was a journalist for a local newspaper. Ever keen to be obliging in a country that has been so obliging towards me, I said yes. The interview while ego-massaging took ages. Afterwards I went to their office for a tea. The morning was gone without much distance achieved. This didn't help my mood & I began to show it. I was glad to leave Torbat.

Unfortunately after Torbat there was a significant climb to get over a pass. By the time I'd got to the bottom on the other side it was almost 5pm & I hadn't covered enough distance. I was expected in Mashhad the following day & didn't want it to be a very long day. At the bottom of the pass I had a puncture in the rear tire. The timing could hardly have been worse. It took up valuable campsite finding time. I finally pitched well after sunset between large fields of wheat in a wide valley.

As I've gone North the climate of has changed significantly. It is now quite cool in the evening, pleasantly so. The land is less dry & much greener; the hills are tussock covered, there are many more trees.

I cycled 91 km in 6 hours & 58 minutes
Total so far 5621 km in 76 days
GPS Coordinates of end point - N 35°37.135, E 59°15. 910

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