Here is the next episode of Bertrand’s adventures with his bike and STD 100 trailer in Panama.
For his first night in Tolé, Panama, no firehouse and no Red Cross for Bertrand to stay so he chose the option : ‘church’. The house of the priest is a kind of camp where you can also find a school, a canteen and a few buildings. Bertrand shares his dormitory with three other people. These people haven’t got the means for a place to stay and some of them are stick. That night, Bertrand slept with a father and his son :
‘The father had an hernia operation a month ago. They still haven’t got back hom because Tolé is only 1 hour from the hospital whereas their house is much farther. The father isn’t well. I’m not a doctor but his situation is painful to see. His son is there to support and help him with everything : to get up, go the bathroom, eat… He spends all his time in bed. This father really loved me.‘
In Panama, like many countries, there is no social security.
Bertrand puts his alarm clock at 5.45am each morning to get on his bike as soon as possible. So for his first morning in Panama, he was running 1h late… due to the time difference.
After a few kilometers, he met Cyril, a French guy from the South of France, who’s been travelling by bike for 2 years and has cycled for 50000km. On this road, he meets many other bike travellers, one of which is Marc, an English guy who’s going from Ushuaïa to Alaska.
The first two days by bike are hard with a temperature of 40°C and dense traffice near Panama City. The outskirts of big cities are always complicated by bike, whatever the country.
In Panama City, Bertrand is currently looking for a boat to go from Panama to Colombia. We’ll find him soon in South America.
‘My bike trailer is amazing. Easy to ride, very steady when going downhill at full speed. My stuff is easy to load and stays dry thanks to the waterproof bag. It goes anywhere and people are surprised. The shock absorber‘s pressure is adjustable to any types of roads, it’s really useful.’