A day in the life pedalling about
Just over 2,000km into our bike adventure around South America, we have settled into a steady daily routine, which mainly focuses on cycling, food and sleep.
Many of the emails we’ve received since we left Rio de Janeiro four weeks ago ask us how we manage the basic tasks that are taken for granted at home. So, here’s a general idea of a day in the life of pedalling about.
6am – The local dogs start barking and cocks start crowing which we try to ignore.
6.30am – Alarm clock goes off. We get up, dress, pack our bags, eat breakfast and if we are camping we take down the tent. It doesn’t always happen, but we aim to be on the road for 8am.
Breakfast in a hotel/pousada here is bread rolls, cheese, ham and jam. Sometime fruit and cake too. If we’re eating in the tent then it’s cereal and powdered milk.
8am – Start cycling – pretty straight forward.
9.30am – Stop for a snack. This is a regular thing – about once an hour we will take a short break to take on more food, as we burn it off faster than a steam train uses up coal. In the morning we might get through a loaf of cake, a large bag of crisps and sweets.
12.30pm – Lunch. We will normally have an early lunch as it’s a long time since breakfast. More bread, crisps, cakes, sweets and juice too. We normally carry supplies with us, as we can’t guarantee that we will find food (or water) on the road. We’ll find a sunny, and hopefully picturesque, spot at the side of the road and sit down for our picnic. Occasionally we might go into an all-you-can-eat buffet, which are good value, but they make for sleepy afternoon cycling so best avoided.
1pm – Back on the road and normally time to put the I-pod on for company for a few hours if the roads are quiet.
4pm – Sunset in Brazil is at 5pm and it’s dark by 5.30. If camping we will start looking for a spot somewhere where we can’t be seen from the road and look to set up camp for the night before it gets dark.
If heading into a town we will aim to get there before 5pm as it’s not much fun arriving in the pitch black. So far we have been lucky to find accommodation easily, where we will offload the numerous bags and cart them and the bikes into the room. We’re very precious about our bikes so normally sleep with them inside with us.
6pm – Dinner time in the tent. Normally instant noodles and soup. Hardly gourmet food, but quick, tasty and hot.
7pm – Dinner in the hotel. Having had a lovely warm shower we will either head out to get something to eat, or more likely cook on our stove in our room or borrow the hotel’s kitchen if possible. So far we have mastered some good pasta dishes and a tasty lentil curry.
8pm – If in the tent, there is a good possibility that we will head to sleep now after having read for a few hours. If in a hotel we will be catching up on admin, writing our diaries, etc. We’ll also head for to a supermarket to load up on supplies for the next day.
10.30pm – We will be asleep by now, having dropped off as soon as our heads hit the pillow.
After a good sleep we’ll wait until we hear the dogs and cocks at 6am and then it all starts again. All in all, it’s a pretty simple way of life.
If there’s anything we’ve missed out that you would like to know about, drop us a comment below and we’ll get back to you.