24 May 2012

Uzbekistan: Xiva - Bukhara 13 May 2012

Just like with any travel one does, there is a need to just go with the flow.  Today would be no different.
It started with with the power breakfast at the Meros.  We were on our bikes at 9am, leaving the city.  It felt good to leave early so we could make the 7-8 hour journey to Bukhara.  We were warned that the road was poor quality so it would take time.  Before we could get going, we would need to fuel up.
Getting ready to depart...the most important piece of Scott's luggage in HJ's hands

We asked the Meros and the guy told us that there was no fuel in Xiva, but maybe in Urgench (25km away).  We stopped at a few but to no avail, closed or no petrol.  We arrived into Urgench and 3 different petrol stations were closed or had no petrol.  We stopped at a fourth, in front of a automotive repair shop and when asked for petrol, the guys told us that there was no fuel in the pumps, but maybe a friend could bring 20 liters for us at the black market price (2200 sums, $0.79 per liter or €0.63 per liter).
Got petrol?
The guy arrived shortly after and after filling up Harm Jan's tank first, there was only a few liters left for Scott's bike.  We asked where we could find more then the guys told us to just follow them to their house, have some tea and they would bring us another 5 liters.
20 liters
The family
We did not know what to expect.  We arrive in the house, they point to the table and we sit down. The daughters start to bring out sweets and bread.  It doesn't stop until the table is full.  We eat and eat and eat.  It was awesome.  Tea comes out and we drink tea.  The guy returns with the petrol, pour the fuel in the tank and head back inside.  We stay for a couple of hours and then we stand up and are about to give our goodbyes as we should get back on the road.  They would not have it.
Plov...it was very filling and very good!
They tell us that the Plov is coming and we don't know when we will be able to eat next so it is important to eat Plov.  Over the course of the 4 hours Harm Jan had a conversation with the original guy who invited us over google translate.
Getting ready to depart
The Plov came, we devoured, drank more tea and then the family saw us off.  It was a very warm welcome and honor for us to be invited into someone's home like this.
This road was actually nice, we noticed that the storm was yet again upon us.
We still had 7 hours or so to make.  We left at 2pm and we knew we would be arriving at dusk/night.  We would try to make up time where we could be it would probably be difficult - and it was.
Straight tar road, they forgot the mac
Nice views
The road was horrible, super pot-holed to the point where we were doing 30-60km/hour.  At the last 100 km, we felt a rejuvenated push, we were almost there.
100km from Bukhara
Watching the sun set in the desert is always a nice sight
As night came, we saw our first problem.  Harm Jan's light was burnt out and he could not see anything.  We had to decrease our speed to about 60 km/hour for the remaining 60 km.  In the end, we made it to Bukhara, arrived to the city, managed to find a hotel, park our bikes and relax.  It had been a super long day but now is time for some food and then rest.

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