Chris' 1994  R100GS/PDChris' new bike, a 1996 F650ULTIMATE JOURNEY Erin's 1997  F650
Living a Dream . . . 2 Live-N-Ride

Nov 9, 2001 -- Brazil: country #39, 100,000kms

Credit to Grande de Sol

-- Story by Chris --

Sunday, Nov 4th: Entered the southern-most state of Brazil, Rio Grande do Sul, and rode 100km to the town of Rosario do Sul, arriving minutes before sunset. We went to the Municipal campground, whose facilities were boarded up, but whose grounds were over-run with festivities of the holiday weekend. We decided it would be too much of a hassle, followed by very little sleep, and instead opted for a $13 hotel in town.

Monday, Nov 5th: Day 900 and Happy B-day to me! Went into the hotel restaurant and was greeted by a wonderful European style buffet breakfast (fresh fruit, meat slices, cheese slices, fresh juices, fresh bread, and some sweet cakes), and it was included in our night’s tariff! Followed Rte 290 for 400km across southern Brazil, at a steady speed of 80-90km (50-56m)/hr, as the temperature steadily rose faster than the miles under our tires.. It was a very boring road, reminding us of some of the less favorable days in Western Australia. We arrived at the home of Richard and Tania, whom we had met through the Internet via our Australian friend Ron Grant.

An email received on Oct 20th of this year:

Hello Erin and Chris. I'm Heloisa, from Porto Alegre (in Rio Grande do Sul/Brazil, not far from Buenos Aires). My friend Richard Hewitt (a Canadian who spends 6 months with us and 6 months back home) told me about your wonderful RTW adventure!

Let me tell you a bit about us - My brother-in-law, Otelo, has a Suzuki dealership and my sister Beatriz runs the Moto Café at Duaction (that's the name of the shop). I write a short informal newsletter once a week about the café and meetings and things that might interest our friends (e.g. I wrote about you last week).

Moto Café is very informal and friendly place. We have a "traditional" dinner every Wednesday - most of the times, prepared by Luciano, a cook biker - or a biker cook, not sure! But, sometimes, it happens that a guest or a friend wants to cook, and this is even more interesting! I've cooked a couple of times myself, alone or with English friends (Graham and Jane, who were here last year). Thursdays are also special, with a DJ (also a "friend of the house") and wraps (sandwiches) for eating. Very often friends have their birthday parties there and also often the groups organize especial celebrations that turn out like biiiiig parties, with music until 4 or 5am! Basically, the most important thing about Moto Café is the atmosphere. If you decide to come to Porto Alegre and stay with us, I'm sure you'll find as if you've known the place and the people already!

I'd really like to hear from you, if you have the time. Also, if you decide to come to Rio Grande do Sul (beautiful scenery!), I'd be more than happy to help you - before coming and while here. But I'm sure once you're here, there'll be just too many people willing to help! I have a couple of suggestions and if you like mountains and wine, Rio Grande do Sul is the place in Brazil!


Tuesday, Nov 6th: Spent the morning with Richard walking around Canoas, a suburb of PA, eating a HUGE buffet lunch for $3/pp. In the afternoon I went to Duaction Motorcycles and worked with Marcelo, Acir, and Cesar to repair the miss-threaded oil drain plug on Renate, my red F650 – we had the same problem with Erin’s bike back in Europe. According to Acir (head mechanic), the original plug is not very long, and susceptible to stripping. I asked questions in Spanish, they replied in Portuguese, and we had a pretty fun afternoon. The guys were a huge help, took the task very seriously, and even stayed until 7:30pm to finish the job.

Wednesday, Nov 7th: Arrived at Moto Café at dusk, and quickly greeted by the friendly gang already assembled. As it only stopped pouring down rain 30 minutes before, only a few folks came with bikes, and about half of the normal 100 "regulars" were in attendance. This did not deter a journalist writing for from taking some photos and asking questions (translated through Tania). We were immediately presented with Moto Café bandanas, and asked to sign "the wall". As the night progressed, so did the consumption of cervesas, which later turned to Caipirinhas: a Brazilian specialty drink made with crushed lime, lots of sugar, crushed ice, and a healthy dose of vodka. A couple of the members spoke English, but for the most part, we spoke in Spanish and they spoke in Portuguese. It’s amazing how much our Español has improved here in Brazil!

Later in the evening, Claudio showed me the proper way to make a Caipinira, and several more glasses were consumed as we worked to perfect the system. Even Sonya, the barmaid agreed ours was a better drink, and she allowed us behind the bar for a couple of hours. Needless to say, I left the bike at the shop and got a ride home with Heloisa. I don’t drink much anymore, as cost and convenience have had their effect, and my body was quick to remind me how much I over did it the night before. At the Thursday sandwich night at Moto Café, I was presented with a bottle of Cachaça by Beatriz and Sonya, another local drink, in order to build up my tolerance again J

Otelo y Beatriz, owners of Duaction and Moto Café

Signing the guest wall

Heloisa, Richard, and Tania

In the beginning:

.....and at the end of the night

Da Boyz of Duaction:  Acir, Marcelo, and Cesar


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