Yarumal

The day began with a climb which continued until our first Coke break. After the break we climbed until lunch. Then we climbed some more. Eventually we crossed the pass to decent, for 5 minutes and then we resumed climbing. We climbed to the next pass, dropped down one hundred metres, and once again we climbed. It was a climbing
sort of a day.

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As we climbed higher the temperature dropped, but still we sweated profusely. I became fascinated by the accuracy with which one drip of sweat kept hitting my crossbar, more like a leak than sweat I thought. I recalled one long-distance cyclist whose frame broke due to his sweat rotting it away in one spot. We passed a distinguished looking gent sitting at the side of the road in his wheelchair. He wore a fine white moustache; both of his legs were missing. He greeted us enthusiastically waving and encouraging us on our way to the summit, however far that may be. I wondered how this man felt cheering on two able-bodied men with powerful legs when never again would he be able to walk.

We crossed the final pass for the day and were stopped by a group of soldiers. A jolly bunch, they wished to know all about our journey, but as the rain began to fall they suggested we move on quickly. The town of Yarumal, its outskirts a mess of lorry repair places and the centre a mass of red brick houses clutching the side of a hill was not very appealing so we chose a simple residencia, one of our our favoured truck stops where a room evening meal and beer come to six or seven euros each. Day done

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