The border crossing into Uzbekistan is quite straightforward, the officers are very easy-going and welcoming. Just few Km into Uzbekistan I realise Jurgen (one of the three Germans), has pulled over and is taking all his gear off the motorbike. I turn around and go back to understand what’s going on. “Scheiße, das ist so scheiße!!!”, Yurgen screams…I soon notice the rack of his Triumph has broken. I decide to remain with the Germans and help them work out a solution, a team is a team! It’s 38 Celsius degrees outside, luckily we manage to find some shade at gas station close by. A little crowd has formed around us in just a few minutes, people are materializing out of nowhere. Eventually, we manage to get hold of a mechanic with a welding machine. It takes over 3 hours for the mechanic, though, to reach us and fix the bike.
His tools, as his job, are very “primitive” though and given that the roads’ condition is terrible, Jurgen knows he cannot continue with such a heavy luggage system. We all realise that his only option is to head back to Beyneu, find a better mechanic and send part of his luggage back home. In tears, he asks us to get going, it’s getting late; he will take it from there. Only a person that planned a trip like ours can understand how hard it can be to accept the fact that your bike just broke down…. Before hitting the road again I force Jurgen to promise me that he will not give up and continue his journey no matter what. The road ahead just appears on getting worse, the holes are deep as bathtubs, the average speed is set at 30/35km/h, the temperature is now close to 40°; “das ist, indeed, so scheiße”. “Silk’n Dust’n and Roads to Roll” is written on the bikes of Claus and Ralph; indeed a lot of dust but still no sign of silk. Later in the day, we find a very basic motel on the side of the road, the sun is fading in the distance, we don’t have many options so we sensibly decide to call it a day.