The Long Way Home.

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Where's Harold?, Apr 5, 2021.

  1. Where's Harold?

    Where's Harold? Adventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2021
    Oddometer:
    20
    Location:
    New York
    Sure thing! I wanted to keep it unknown but it's sharing the story that counts. I Started May 7th, 2018 and Finished June 23rd, 2019. I will start to put the original dates instead of just DAY 10....etc

    I spanned 18 countries on an unknown motorcycle; a Zongshen 200GY Enduro that I paid $900 dollars for.


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    #21
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  2. Where's Harold?

    Where's Harold? Adventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2021
    Oddometer:
    20
    Location:
    New York
    Sunday, June 3rd 2018

    Current Location: Mariano Bareto; Colonia del Sacramento, Uruguay
    Destination: Noel Collares; Montevideo, Uruguay

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    Montevideo, here I come! The ride there was nice, and it was supposed to take less than 4-hours to get there. I was on track to not kill myself from driving. So far, I’d been able to stay with hosts I met on Couchsurfing. My fifth host was Noel, a fellow traveler herself.

    Upon arriving, I was met by her neighbors who let me in until she got home. There we spoke about their travels since one of her neighbors had just gotten back from spending some months in Brazil. They told me what to see, do, and eat when I got there. It wasn't long before Noel arrived and we left for her apartment. Off the bat, Noel was very hospitable. She made food, rolled up some fasso (marijuana), and then put on the season finale of one of my favorite shows, Six Feet Under, and without fail I began to cry. I alway urge people to watch this show because of its relatability and the fact that I believe no one can watch this show without crying (unless you have no soul).

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    Monday, June 4th 2018

    I didn't expect the cold to affect me so much, but there I was with a deep chest cold. With not much gas in the tank, figuratively speaking, I decided to take it easy today, run some errands and explore a bit.

    I started with buying tools. Nearly being stranded in the middle of Argentina without any taught me better. The simple act of having some tools is a real lifesaver when it comes to loose and popped chains, changing a tire, and even changing something as simple as the oil. With the bike's care in mind, I couldn't forget mine so I bought a ski mask to help keep my face warm during the cold drives.

    The beaches of Montevideo are famous, but I was there during the dead of winter and the beautiful beaches looked like ghost towns. The beauty was still ever present, but with a calm seldom seen in the summer.


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    #22
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  3. advrockrider

    advrockrider Long timer

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2009
    Oddometer:
    1,207
    Location:
    Norcal
    Wow, what a ride. Report it how ever you want, the back story was all I needed to follow along. Thanks for filling in the details.
    #23
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  4. Where's Harold?

    Where's Harold? Adventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2021
    Oddometer:
    20
    Location:
    New York
    Tuesday, June 5th 2018

    Today I allowed my cousin’s threats on my life to ruin my day. It all started when I began this trip. My aunt asked if I could take a cell phone, some shower curtains, and three hats to my cousin in Chile. While I had no room for anything I did take the cellphone since I could easily just put it in my pocket. Upon arriving in Chile, I gave my cousin his phone, and instead of thanking me for the favor he began to accuse me of stealing the shower curtains. It even got to the point where my cousin began trying to scheme me out of money. This was the reason I ended up having a friend I made in Chile help me buy the motorcycle. I called her the Hummingbird. My cousin began to say he was going to find me and kill me, but if I really thought about it he wouldn’t be able to find me as I made my way back home.




    Wednesday, June 6th 2018

    As I prepared to leave, I made it a goal to get an oil change and find camping gear. After a bit of searching, I found a shop that changed my oil since I still didn't know how yet, and for a whopping $10 I got that and my bike maintained.

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    As I was waiting, I struck up a conversation with a man named Washington, the Director of Motul in Uruguay. The man had been on a motorcycle all his life, from racing to exploring. Me arriving here brought back all those memories for him. We ended up talking for hours; he gave me advice on what to expect in certain countries and connected me with his friend Baz, who could help me out while I made my way up South America. When I asked him where I could find a rear luggage container for the bike, he told me he had one and went into the back. He returned with one, and before I could say anything he told me it was a gift. Granted, it was not the one I was looking for, but you should never complain about the blessings life throws at you, no matter how small. I didn't buy a tent or a sleeping bag, but today was an overall success. I made a great friend and set up a meeting with his friend Baz to see how he could help me out.

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    BABY GOT BACK!
    #24
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  5. Where's Harold?

    Where's Harold? Adventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2021
    Oddometer:
    20
    Location:
    New York
    SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT!!!!


    MAY 7 TH 2021


    Today is a special day. Not only is it the launch of The Long Way Home Kickstarter today, but it also marks the three-year anniversary of me embarking on the adventure that brought this memoir to life. If you would have told me that I would write a book one day, I would’ve never guessed. I feel very blessed to be able to share my experience with you all and hope to inspire you to go find the magic in your own life. If I could inspire one person to go and fight for their dreams; I’ve accomplished my goal.

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    I haven't been very active but that changes today, I am going to be doing daily posts while I promote my memoir The Long Way Home.

    I will be posting more stories on here, but if you don't want me to feed your wanderlust drop by drop. Here's your chance to enjoy it in one seating!


    Enjoy Guys!

    Kickstarter is Live!
    Along with some other goodies!


    https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/thelongwayhome/the-long-way-home-2
    #25
  6. Where's Harold?

    Where's Harold? Adventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2021
    Oddometer:
    20
    Location:
    New York
    Thursday, June 7th 2018

    I didn't end up meeting with Baz, but I didn't let it delay the trip. I was still set to leave tomorrow. The last Uruguay soccer game before the World Cup was today, so Noel and I decided to watch it at a bar. They won against Kazakhstan, so everyone there was ecstatic about it. To celebrate, I splurged on some craft beer for when we got home.


    Friday, June 8th 2018

    Current Location: Noel Collares; Montevideo, Uruguay

    Destination: Augusto Debacco; Pelotas, Brazil

    After seeing the Fingers of Punta del Este, I planned to stay in Punta del Diablo, a town close to the border of Brazil. But, after Nicole, my girlfriend before embarking on this trip, told me I was being a “p*ssy,” I decided to "man up" and drive all the way to Pelotas, Brazil. Today also happened to be when Anthony Bourdain died, and Nicole was depressed. I didn’t understand the root cause of her depression, but she didn't talk to me about it. Sometimes she worried me. I would always talk to her when I got depressed. But, now that I was away, the fact that she wouldn’t open up was what worried me. My grandma being in the hospital didn't help either.

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    THE FINGERS OF PUNTA DEL ESTE


    Still, I was excited to see Nicole when I got to Peru. She was flying down to accompany me on this trip for a little while.

    It's these things that made me want to go home. One of my aunts was always quick to remind me that no one would pause their life for me, and that I shouldn't either. But, how can I forget everyone who was there for me? How could I enjoy my adventure when my loved ones were going through hell?

    The border crossing into Brazil was so easy, and finally I was in country number three. As the sun went down, the cold began to creep up. But, I was more prepared this time. The drive was smooth until I saw a white sheet over a body, and a crushed motorcycle under an 18-wheeler. It was my first time seeing a dead body on the street, let alone next to a motorcycle . I was a bit shaken up, but I only had 30 minutes left until I was at my host Augusto’s house. As I began speeding, my chain popped again but this time it jammed between the rear tire causing me to drift. I had no idea how no cars hit me, but I was able to swerve to the shoulder and began getting to work on the chain. I was completely dirty, but we were back in business.

    I arrived in Pelotas at 9 pm, and was greeted Augusto's parents: Jenina and Jose. Now they did not speak a lick of English, let alone Spanish, but they fed me and we somehow were able to carry on a conversation with my broken Portuguese. It wasn't long before Augusto arrived to show me around town. His English and Spanish were pretty good so we opted to speak English so he could stretch his language muscles. We had a beer and a joint at the docks where we relaxed as the boats passed by. Augusto said he had a surprise for me tomorrow.

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    AUGUSTO, JENINA, ME, & JOSE
    The Debacco Clan
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    Kickstarter is Live!
    Along with some other goodies!
    https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/thelongwayhome/the-long-way-home-2
    #26
    roadcapDen likes this.
  7. Where's Harold?

    Where's Harold? Adventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2021
    Oddometer:
    20
    Location:
    New York
    Saturday, June 9th - Sunday, June 10th 2018

    Tonight, Augusto and I are going to Xalassa, a huge party held twice a year in Pelotas, Brazil. The theme this year was fantasy aka a costume party. So, until then I decided to go to work with Augusto's dad. He owned a trucking company and even transported heavy machinery himself. We went off to the jungle to pick up an excavator, and things got interesting. Once we got the excavator, we got stuck on a dirt road, which we barely fit on to begin with. It didn't help that there was a language barrier between us but we managed to pull the truck out using the very same machine we picked up. I'd say we had a successful day!
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    ALL IN A DAY'S WORK!

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    Once we got home, Augusto and I got ready to go out to Xalassa. I didn't know what to expect. I pictured a small party with maybe 50 people, but I was so wrong. The building was a giant warehouse with a few hundred people lined up outside. Once we got in, the party really started. We danced, drank, and even joined some people for a friendly game of beer pong. The party was amazing but one thing kept catching my eye; men just grabbing women and kissing them. I thought it was along the lines of sexual assault but here the people just say, "this is Brazil.” That was pretty normal here Augusto said.

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    WE BEEN DRINKING!
    I kept seeing it happen as the party went on, and with me drinking more I decided to do as the Brazilians do. I began striking up a conversation with a woman named Kathy, who spoke broken English. She swore I was Brazilian, but I was able to convince her otherwise. It wasn’t until I pulled her in and tried to kiss her that she said, “you are Brazilian!” I began laughing. Luckily, Augusto was there to back me up and explain that I wasn’t from around here. We began talking and playing beer pong as she explained how it was such a normal thing to happen at a club or party. It still confused me. Once the party ended, we had an Uber take us home, but not before finally giving Kathy a kiss; the normal way.

    We didn't sleep until 7am, and when we finally got up it was time for another party; his younger cousin's birthday. It was a huge change from the party we went to last night. We traded in the drinks and costumes for juice, arcade games, and cake. What I loved more than anything was how the Debacco’s took me in as one of their own. I didn’t know anyone since leaving Santiago, Chile but everyone treated me so well.


    KICKSTARTER IS LIVE!
    THIS IS YOUR WAY TO GET THE BOOK BEFORE ANYONE ELSE!
    https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/thelongwayhome/the-long-way-home-2
    #27
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  8. Where's Harold?

    Where's Harold? Adventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2021
    Oddometer:
    20
    Location:
    New York
    Monday, June 11th 2018

    The Colombians I met in Uruguay had just made it to Brazil, so we decided to meet up to discuss a possible partnership. There I was able to finally meet the last two guys in the crew, Diego and Sebastian that made up the seven. We spoke about Rio De Janeiro, a place everyone in Brazil had been telling us to avoid, and what our plan would be if we went there. If we had a solid plan that kept us safe, I was willing to go. I wanted to explore everything I could. I just didn’t want to ignore all the warnings and have something bad happen to us.



    We are now an 8 man crew: Andres, Daniel P., Daniel, Sebastian, Gordo, William, Diego, and I. It was the start of the Where's Harold? X A Dream through South America partnership. We decided to meet in Guaiba in two days to begin our trip to Rio.

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    1.Me, 2.Daniel P, Air Pires, 3.Sebastian P, 4.Daniel A, 5.Andres, 6.Sebastian T, 7.Willy, & 8.Diego

    Once they left, I began to speak with the Debacco's about my route through Brazil, and they began to get worried. They showed me YouTube videos and told me stories of how bad Rio was. They warned me of the yellow and red lines that divided Rio. They even offered to let me leave my motorcycle with them and let me return for it when I head to Paraguay. But, I wanted to be able to move freely. They began to make me worried, and that's something I hadn't done since starting this trip. Maybe it was the seeds they planted in my head about the possible danger. But, I still wanted to keep an open mind to the idea of there being more good in the world than bad. I had a feeling we would be fine, but it was always good to have a plan.

    KICKSTARTER IS LIVE!
    THIS IS YOUR WAY TO GET THE BOOK BEFORE ANYONE ELSE!
    #28
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