Finally, this morning I picked her up… my black beauty, I shall call her Fury. Ready to carry my luggage she also takes over the role of my mule and I was surprised that the bike was already more or less fully loaded…
Picking up Fury
I started my day pretty late in order to avoid the rush hour in Sao Paulo and was around 09:30 at the motorbike dealer. I was disappointed they apparently deliver out bikes only with 1 litre in the tank. After I told them that this would be a no go in Germany, they suddenly came around the corner with a 5 litre tank and surprisingly filled in some starting help. Ready to roll I figured out that I forgot to give them a missing part for the tank bag support. Damn… however, luckily they could fix it immediately and after 2 hours I was on the road 😀 I was pretty impressed by the weight of the bike and started with my legs shaking, being nervous and overwhelmingly happy at the same time. After some minutes I shook off my fear and got easily used to the BMW GS. She was just gliding down the road like on clouds, so smooth and at the same time also powerfull while increasing the throttle. What a beauty!!!!!
The first KM on the Road
It took me a while to leave the megacity of Sao Paulo behind, passing a couple of Favelas and the first toll check points on the road. After lining up like a good German would be doing, I realised that there is no fee for motorbikes and could continue! Born to be wild… Freedom… I passed any other checkpoint with nodding my helmet to the personnel. Ciao, ciao… (note: not sure if I was high that day but usually there will be plenty of toll roads where even motorcycles needs to pay :p)
Parque Carlos Botelho
On my way to the national nature reservoir “Parque Carlos Botelhos” I made my way through mainly agricultural landscapes and had to think about how the wine must taste here. Certainly, on my way back I would bring a bottle along for Carmen and Chris, my friends from Sao Paulo 🙂
I was happy to be out of town and was feeling immediately the change of the atmosphere… breathable air… people on bicycles… chicken crossing the streets… colourful buildings along the vineyards… the sun shining… blue sky… freedom!
The main destination of my today’s first trip was soon approaching: A beautiful natural reservoir, full of beautiful exotic plants, flowers and trees… a proper jungle which reminded me of Vietnam or Laos. Slowly I made my way through the 32 km long reservoir and enjoyed the beauty of its scenery and last but not least the curvy road.
In order to prevent people from speeding I had to regularly cross speeding blockages which were a lot of fun in fact 😀 Apparently, the park is packed with animals and even monkeys… of course I did see none and I guess all my luck was left behind in Australia (Coastal Highway – a magical trip from Melbourne to Sydney). However, I was happy that finally one animal joined my trip… “Shine Shoe”, the toy pet I got as a gift from the daughter of my friends in Sydney 😀
After “the jungle” I was looking for a place to stay and found a hotel in “El Dorado”. What a name I thought, it must be paradise!!!! Before arriving at my final destination of the day I passed km of funny looking “palm trees” until I realised they were huge banana plantations. The trees were carrying plenty of fruits and I was tempted to just pick one in order to try the fresh fruit.
Finally I arrived in El Dorado, a super layed back small town in between of Sao Paulo and Curitiba. The hotel “ElDorado” was directly located in the city centre, at a charming town square and cathedral which windows were shining light blue during the night.
The owners of the hotel were very friendly and helped me to carry my luggage up into the room. The building itself was not in the best shape anymore but for 80 Reais I could not complain. When ordering the dinner I asked for their speciality and the friendly young fellas were recommending me to take the “barca”, a cheese-bacon-burger, fries and calabrese (a yummy sausage with onions). It was the right choice for a long first day and the “Choppi” (Brazilian way to ask for a beer) was doing the rest.
Just before I was going back to my room, I visited the small but highly charming cathedral just across the street. Surprisingly many young people from the village were attending the service and it reminded me more of a concert than anything else. The priest welcomed me friendly and wished me all the best for my travels.
My first day was just an amazing start and all the hustle of the last month was forgotten.