Wednesday, September 30, 2009

robbery while there’s a fire outbreak

Many people asked (in north America): where did your rode from?

I had my Singapore flag on Hope Too, maybe they just want to start a conversation.

Me: we came from Singapore

Stranger: did u shipped your bike from Singapore?

Me: er…no. we rode from Singapore to France, shipped to argentina, from there we entered usa from Texas and now we are here (Alaska/Canada).

Stranger: waooo! awesome! that was cool! u rode from Texas to here!

Me:………………………. (you only know where is Texas).

Broken bearing.

We are heading towards Whitehorse from Anchorage. the journey seems forever. I would stop to check the bike as there are a lot of random noises, then I would stop to go to the toilet, knowing that the services between towns are limited.

We were 16km to a town, Haines Junction. I felt a strong wobble on the rear wheel and stopped. couldn’t see any loose nut, pinched tires or any nails. Samantha had better eyes and noted some unusual looking stuff on the rear wheel right side bearing. I took out the rear wheel and the bearing was broken into metal chips. i couldn’t hammer that broken bearing out. didn’t have a proper too. at the same time we were struggling with the cold. cold. cold. cold weather. At last a vehicle passed by and I stopped it. he was willing to get towing services for us when he reached the town. meanwhile, a RV a stopped. The uncle provided me all the tools he had to hammer the bearing out but it doesn’t work. then a police vehicle came, which was informed by the first vehicle. he came to check us out and went back.

meanwhile, we went up to the RV to seek shelter from the cold. the uncle offered us hot tea and instant noodle, knowing that we had not eaten since leaving the campsite without breakfast as there isn’t any food stop in between. that was the marvelous breakfast and lunch and his invitation really kept us out of the cold until the policeman came with a trailer, to tow Hope Too to the nearest workshop.

I had a spare bearing but wrong size. lucky again, at this small town, at this messy workshop, there was the bearing I needed. off we go again!

These 2 Canadian saved us.

Strange place.

we had 3 night rest in Whitehorse where we updated the blog, sent letters and parcel, stock up our kitchen and set fire for BBQ. The weather at Whitehorse was really nice.

then we traveled 420km eastwards to Watson Lake where we camped ‘free’ at the park. we set our tent under a roof and there was free firewood to keep us warm. it was a nice place. in the night, it rain and I told myself that we are lucky to have this roof to keep our tent dry.

it rained till the next afternoon, 1pm. the sky was dark but the rain stopped. we packed up and went out to the town getting ready for another 500km to the other stop. when we reached the town within 15minutes, it started to rain again. my plan was to ride over the clouds hoping that the sky would be better on the other side. we rode and rode, it rain and rain. we did not have any rain gear as it was torn. wet, cold at 2degress Celsius, flooded boots and wet glove under the cold wind. there wasn’t any services along this highways as it was winter and many were closed. at last we stopped at a gas station’s café. walked in, water dripping from our jackets, cold and desperate, there sits a old woman that stopped her conversation with the younger owner. she looked at as because we are wetting the carpet. there were 5 tables and chairs in this café but it was filled with their shopping materials. we were NOT allow to sit in the café. we don’t feel welcome. I am not begging for sympathy. went in just to buy a cup of expensive hot coffee and stood outside to drink.

we are desperate to look for a place to stay and Sam ask the owner how much was the room. she said:

well, actually we are going to close in 3 days due to the season but if u have a sleeping bag, u could sleep here maybe for a few bucks……like CAD$40. (S$60)

I was FUCKING ANGRY but kept my cool. there’s a Chinese saying:

Robbery while there’s a fire outbreak.

kept cool and said goodbye to them.

can you reconize that this is Hope Too? Just a night after staying at the record breaking room.

it's about 3 inches of snow on Hope Too.

Nice paintwork?

Hope Too was giving much weird noise from the chain. there isn’t flat ground for me to put on center stand to oil my chain for the past days. then the front disc brake was giving knocking noise. then we were cold. mountain after mountain, the sky dosen’t seems better. finally it snowed, which was abit better than rain as it was dry BUT we were already wet. we were looking forward to the next camp ground that we could set a tent under a shelter with firewood,

there wasn’t any because the campground stated on the map were closed due to winter.

we had to break a record this time:

to stay at the most expensive lodging in our trip: CAD$90 excluding tax. that came out to be S$150.00. that is for a room of 3 meters by 3 meters.

this is another case of

robbery while there’s a fire outbreak.

but after some brainstorming, it isn’t this case. they provided the service with a price, I agreed and paid. it’s an official business transaction. they are just providing a service to desperate travelers at a desperate location.

we are desperate. Then I remembered my god sister’s quote:

the safest option will always not be the cheapest option.

we stayed.

Cold road. it's quite dangerous because there are black ice.
I remembered the day after we got fine from the Canadian border for CAD$1000, we reached a gas station and went in for coffee. the cashier and a customer was curious about us and asked about our trip. he was very enthusiastic about us. we answer the same thing and he asked more. I decided to take out my CAD$1000 ticket and ask them about some English word that I don’t understand. their answer was very short and tried to avoid me after that. I felt like they see me like a criminal.

anyway, we are heading southeast. it seems that the weather this autumn isn’t that good as it will be snowing along the rocky mountains here.

got to whip Hope Too to be obedient, not to give us any trouble along the way.



RaTz said...

Hey Goh and Sam,

Sorry to hear abt the 趁火打劫 and crappy weather along the way. Keep heading south and it should start getting warmer pretty soon. Hang in there, and ride safe..

singaporedream said...

yeh, the spade of ace is in their hand. i only have diamond three. LL. lucky today we stayed in the cheapest sheltered place. we held back 2 days becoz road ahead is either snow or rain. after 2 days of waiting will be better. btw, do u know anything abt mobile fraud?

Thomas & Andrea said...

Hi Guys,
sorry to hear about the bad conditions to travel ... here in Switzerland it is still fall (no rain or snow) and we are preparing for the long winter.
Try to get asap to the south and take care .... Good Luck and a big hug from us
Thomas & Andrea

Marisol said...

Hi Sam & Goh,
It feels amazingly tough when reading you're riding in those weather conditions... but seeing the pics of Hope covered in snow, it's just unbelieveable!!!

Last nigth Oscar and Nancy were having empanadas with Sebastian and me at home. We'll miss you here this year, but we're absolutely happy of where you are and what you are getting!!!

Big big big kiss for both, enjoy (apart from the cold) and ride safe!!

RaTz said...

Mobile fraud? I'm assuming tt you're referring to mobile phone cloning (