Punta Arenas

9 03 2008

3stoogesI’m not feeling lyrical today, so bear with me. Sabine just made chocolate brownies. And hot chocolate. There is a chocolate theme here. It’s cold outside. I’m happy to be doing nothing inside with a computer. Yes, I am thousands of miles from where I normally live, and sitting inside. We may even switch on the TV later. Occasionally one must. I can look around the city… tomorrow.

The last 250km was a bit of a slog. From Puerto Natales we rode east – always a good direction when the wind comes from the west. After saying goodbye to Michiel (he’s heading for warmer pastures), we continued and made good time for 100km. Then the road turned south (yes, there was a distinct corner) and we slogged out another 150km over a day and a bit. Now we are in Punta Arenas. We may stay here or a few days: see some penguins; eat some fish. That is, I’ll be eating the fish if I can get it away from the penguins.

The last section hasn’t been very interesting riding, especially when the wind comes up, and tries to bury you in the ditch on the opposite side of the road. You end up watching either the line on the side of the road, like a hawk, so you don’t crash into those drafting you on the left, or the wheel of the person in front of you, like a hawk, so they don’t crash into you. When you do look up, the pampa is, well, pampa. The same it was hours ago.

There were a few things to look at: Some of the trees were covered in a whispy growth. Some of the fences (or rather gates) provided interesting objects for photography. Some of the trees are amazing – there are no branches on the eastern side, and the tree looks as though it is continually windswept. Which it is.

In fact: to work out which way is north in Patagonia:
Find west and turn 90° to the right.
How do I find west?
Turn into the wind.
What if there is no wind?
Get out of the house.
I’m outside and there is still no wind!
Climb out of the ditch then.



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