FrankenSprocket

Some days I’m more interested in the people, scenery, culture, and my own reactions to them. Other days it is just the Phoenix, the road, and me. The past week has mostly been the later. At times something spectacular pops out at me but most of the time I simply move along in a state of deep connection to the world around me.

Huancayo to Huancavelica

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Huancavelica is a small town that is mostly bypassed by tourists. It is relaxed, friendly, and has some of the most interesting looking churches I’ve seen yet.

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That is a common sight around many of the small towns I’ve visited recently. I also found out why the chicken feet are included: They are actually eaten by the locals! I thought that foot in my soup was just for flavor (like a bone), but it is actually there for you to eat the meat off of it. I’ve seen street vendors selling deep-fried chicken’s feet as a snack. Unsurprisingly it tastes just like chicken, though I think I’ll stick to more conventional parts of the bird….

Huancavelica to Ayacucho

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Pretty alpacas:

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They all have those red or pink ribbons in their ears. Identity tags perhaps, as this is all open range country?

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Ayacucho
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Not much to be said for Ayacucho except the interesting travelers I found there. And a critical repair:

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That is my rear sprocket. Look closely and you will see half the teeth are missing! Apparently closer to failure than I thought! The chain and front sprocket still look good so I found a local mechanic who came up with this amazing repair:

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What you see there is my new Frankenstein Sprocket. Or perhaps I should call it my FrankenSprocket? The inner ring with the bolt holes from my original sprocket welded to the teeth from a sprocket for a different bike. As far as I can tell it is perfectly centered. I will still replace it with a new sprocket in Bolivia when I replace the chain and front sprocket, but I may just keep this FrankenSprocket as a souvenir of how inventive and high quality Latin America mechanics can be in their repairs.

Ayacucho to Andahuaylas

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Here is how Peruvians do protests/strikes:

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The road into town is filled with rocks making it impossible for cars to pass. They did not seem to mind me picking my way through on a motorcycle.

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This fascinating statue mystified me at the time. Wikipedia clarifies the meaning but does nothing towards getting it to make sense:

July 28. Yawar Fiesta in Andahuaylas. A special bullfight in which a condor is tied to the back of the bull. In its efforts to release itself from the back of the bull, the condor wounds the bull. The bull is then killed by the condor, or by the villagers. The condor is released after the fiesta.

I might try to return to Andahuaylas to see this if events permit….

Andahuaylas to Abancay to Cusco

Some of the most amazing paved road riding I’ve done on this trip was the stretch leaving Abancay (~130km east of Andahuaylas) towards Cusco. Beautifully paved, no obstacles in the road, no traffic, and twisting around the canyon wall perfectly for maximum motorcycle enjoyment.

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6 comments to FrankenSprocket

  • Grant

    Spectacular scenery! Is that agricultural plots I see on the mountain opposite in the first picture? If it is, I can imagine they must be pretty fearless farmers that work it!

    I see a lot of what look like roofless towns. Are those ruins of some sort?

    And I’ll bet there’s a fairy tale behind the condor-bull fight, if you can find it.

    • othalan

      Yep, those are agricultural plots. Having those up the side of a mountain is common, it just looks steeper in that picture than in others I’ve taken because it is hard to make out the change in angle. Not that it is flat, just not as steep as it looks.

  • Mom

    The Frankensprocket repair is exactly the sort of mechanical work my father was trained to do, partially learned from living on a poor farm, I am sure, where make do as best you can is the lifestyle.

  • Elizabeth

    Be careful… Sounds like the Zombie / Ghoul computer is taking over the bike… Pretty soon you will have an army on your hands. 😀 Love the FrankenSprocket though! Great ingenuity

  • […] pictures. Not much detail to the story, which shows how much of a non-event it ended up being. FrankenSprocket | Othalan's Travels Good […]

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