In Google Earth, Bermejo is actually labeled Ceuvas. Not quite right, but interesting.
Bermejo is a pretty little town in the foothills. There's a restaurant there - Restaurante Oriental. Nataly says it's been there since she was a little girl. We stopped there for lunch. We ate outside, but inside there was a little girl who Deneb was flirting with.
I had milanesa - meat pounded flat, battered and fried - rice and some tomato. Nataly and Deneb shared some chicken from the oven and Dad ate some milanesa too. There was also some fairly disgusting juice at the table, but I don't think we finished it.
After I scarfed my plate, I went to change into my running clothes. I'd used the head earlier and there was no way I was going to drop tro' in there so I just did it next to the street. That usually wouldn't even warrant a mention, but in Bolivia, that's not something people are particularly used to seeing. I was able to complete my wardrobe change without unduly shocking the locals and I headed out for my run.
I ran on the road facing traffic. No headphones. Anyone who's experienced the life of a pedestrian in Bolivia would think twice about crossing the street wearing headphones let alone go running on a twisty mountain road with them. Only one time was I shocked by how close a truck came to hitting me and it wasn't even really that close.
The first 6 miles or so of the run are done in a pretty gorge, which eventually the road climbs out of and you get some pretty spectacular views.
This was the first run where I had real interaction with the people with whom I was sharing the road. One truck driver in particular hauling a tandem load of something heavy and I played leap frog. He initially passed me on the way out of Bermejo and gave me a bit of a look, but it wasn't, "Dude, get the hell off of my road!" it was more, "Huh, check that guy out..."
About 15 minutes later, I passed him pulled off the side of the road taking a bit of a breather. We exchanged pleasantries and I continued on my way.
Finally as I was dropping the last 5 km or so into Cuevas, the trucker passed me again. We waved, he shook his head and that was that. Many other folks gave me a thumbs up as they went by and generally seemed impressed I was out there.
Anyway, as I mentioned yesterday, this run climbed for something like 15 km before dropping the final 6 into Cuevas. That makes this a very good road for tempo work or intervals too. The climbing is gradual enough and pretty steady. I'll absolutely be running this again - perhaps even regularly.
Thanks for reading and consider smiling at passers by, they might smile back.