We arrived in La Serena, a town set back from the sea but with a bit of a strip along the front and following Colin and Gills fine example, we decided we were going to treat ourselves to a hotel room. We ended up in Marserena, with a pool and balcony where we could watch the sunsets for a few days over Xmas.
The Wickerman? Here? In La Serena?
We had a little kitchenette in the room so we stocked up on some good food and a lot of booze to see us through the festive period. This was my first 'warm' Xmas and although it felt odd playing frisbee on the beach on Xmas, it was also most enjoyable. We had a few days relaxing doing not very much and although it sounds hard to believe, it felt like being on holiday.
I used the time to tinker with the bike and having had no luck in getting someone to look at it in Mendoza, I decided to have a crack at doing valve clearences for the first time. Following my vague BMW manual, I acually managed to do it and found it relatively easy. One of our mottos on this trip is if something sounds hard or might be difficult, our normal approach at home might be to give it a miss or get someone else to do it. Well here that dosen't realy work as sometimes there isn't someone to do things for you and you have no choice but to do it yourself which is really no bad thing. The BM is actually quite easy to work on as we found out later doing Michelles clearences but it still doesn't excuse the expensive parts though. However, on leaving La Serena, I found I had a pretty hefty oil leak but after removing the cylinder head by the roadside, I found it was just a missaligned seal and after about 30 minutes, I had it sorted and back to normal. Got a few strange looks from the locals though.