Bonjour and Bon Jovi (Drive Day 156: December 2nd, 2003)

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Landscape by Gary Geboy, see more in this photo book

If it is possible for two sides of a land border to be more different than Equador and Northern Peru I’ve never seen it. Leaving Vilcabamba we pass a scene that Gary captures in what is one of my favorite images of the roadtrip – a lone figure in teal walking through a timeless, massive landscape of breathtaking beauty.

The border crossing is so remote that the guards spend their days trying to decipher Bon Jovi CD liner notes. It is surprisingly easy to translate “on a steel horse I ride,”  when you are crossing into Peru in a silver Avion truck camper.

The other side? Bleak and desolate would be too glamourous to call these vistas. I’m actually happy to camp inside the gates of a dumpy hotel in the town of Sullana – the wind whips through the treeless landscape like punishment.

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Follow this bonus-material blog and ride along on a one-year road trip that inspired the memoir The Drive: Searching for Lost Memories on the Pan American Highway. On sale now. Get yours through the buy-the-book links at the bottom of the landing page on my teresabrucebooks.com website or here or here. Planning a road trip? Buy the audiobook here. Like The Drive’s Facebook page and tweet back at me @writerteresa. Like travel anthologies? I’m in a brand new one called Alone Together: Tales of Sisterhood and Solitude in Latin America which you can get here.

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