I met four Colombian riders, three of them in Quito, Ecuador and the fourth the next day.
Thomas, Diego, Andres and Valancia
The group got bigger as we saw friends along the way.
Andres convinced me to skip Cali and ride with them to Armenia - Antioquia, Colombia. The winning offer was that they would show me the town and take a ride in the country side. How could I say no?
Thomas drove me around Armenia looking for generic rear brake pads. We went to the motorcycle parts zone, which was incredibly intense. I have never seen so many motorcycles in one area and so many people working on their bikes. Oddly, we couldn’t find the brake pads that I needed.
We gave up looking for the brake pads and went to his house for lunch.
Then we went a ride in the Colombian hills…
We rounded a corner and encountered a herd of cows…classic.
Thomas led us to Salento, Quindio were we had a traditional cup of rice pudding.
On the way to pick up his son from school, we stopped for a snack. Thomas had blood sausage and had the pork sausage.
The following day I rode to Pereira, Risaralda, Colombia, where Diego lives. I found his office building and we took off for the motorcycle parts zone. First stop and I got the brake pads. Diego paid ~$95.00 USD for new brake pads in Quito at the BMW dealer. I paid ~42.00 USD for pads made by a Spanish company.
We went back to his office build and I installed the new pads in the parking garage while Diego attended to business. An hour later we went for lunch at a restaurant on a hill over looking Pereira. Diego gave me a 2013 date book and insisted on paying for lunch. Colombians are great! In fact, every meal I had with Colombian riders was picked up by them. I felt a little embarrassed, but understood that they are generous people and proud to extend hospitality to a traveler.