We didn’t know about the strike when we left Santiago but we found out later on. We were going to Navidad which meant heading west to San Antonio before turning South to Santo Domingo.
We thought something was happening when people waved at us a few kilometres before we got there.
However, we hadn’t stopped and we rounded a bend to find several trucks stopped before some burning tyres and buses across the road.
We did try to continue but the buses were too well placed and our bikes too wide for the gap.
We tried a detour via a back road, it wasn’t our first if the day after bypassing an earlier demonstration and then after a serious accident.
The back road however was a steep unpaved bit of road and halfway up, it too was blocked.
So, we had to give in, we got back on the main road and got the map out. After along discussion with a local family, we could see our only way was back adding about 75km to our journey.
We didn’t mind, we understand that the people are fighting for their rights and looking at how widespread the demonstrations are it’s easy to see that most people are desperately poor.
We are incredibly lucky to have the choice to do this. I have described us in the past as rich tourists compared to most of the world. If something bad happened we could effectively buy our way out of trouble, whether it be medical care or paying a fine or needing to leave a place in a hurry.