Riding along my gaze fell on the fields, hills and mountains with their colours ranging across green, yellow, brown red and purple into the distance reminded me of the various colours that my foot, ankle and leg have turned during the last three weeks. I thought I should provide an update on my progress. We are now entering the green and yellow phases which indicate healing is progressing, sadly new red and patches are appearing too. The swelling has mostly subsided but not gone away entirely and the swelling around the ankle bone has hardly reduced at all. The ankle is still sore to walk any distance but is improving and my reduced physical strength is impacting on my confidence. I suspect a further month to go before I am fully healed. It has surprised me that I have needed pain killers for such a length of time as the leg can still wake me up at night.
We have found the last few days challenging in a number of ways. The primary reason is that we have been wrestling with whether we visit Bolivia or not? We have decided that we will not visit Bolivia this time, the poor road conditions including lots of sand, the guaranteed spills and my leg being the primary reasons. I have also found that my confidence on tough surfaces has been reduced since the accident. We know we will miss certain wonderful places and views, but we both realise that while we will take on challenges when they are placed in front of us, we do not choose to put ourselves in situations where we take increased risks, which hundreds of kilometres on dirt roads with soft sand would provide, especially with one of us already partly functioning! We have always said that we ride to travel rather travel to ride. We will spend more time exploring the Salar de Atacama region in Chile instead before heading to Peru.
25,000 kilometres and counting, we have passed another distance milestone. It may not seem far to all you Jetset frequent flyers, but for us each kilometre has been ridden by hand, some more easily than others! We estimate that the total trip will be in the order of 40,000 kilometres. This is a real guesstimate as I have done no research on the distance from here, Antofagasta to New York. We are now over 1,300 kilometres north of Santiago by road and still have over 1,000 kilometres to go before we reach the Peruvian border.