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Pucón, I Poop On You

I say “on” because I can’t poop in you. More specifically, the toilet here is broken.

I don’t ask for much, but I don’t think a working toilet is too much to ask for. I’ve been camping before. I’ve relieved myself in the shrubs. I’m not opposed to the idea by any means, but if I’m paying money to stay somewhere I shouldn’t have to walk out to the back yard just to take a piss. I don’t really mind it myself actually, but I’m trying to be considerate of the property owners and other guests staying in the hostel. Would you like to look out your window and see someone watering the plants? I didn’t think so. Neither did she.

In the last 6 months, we’ve stayed in some really nice places, as well as some not so nice places. This hostel here in Pucón is by far the worst. I’m really not too picky, all I ask for is that a place is relatively clean, and that things work. This place is clean enough, but nothing works.

I shouldn’t have to wait 25 minutes to pee just because there is only one toilet for the entire place, and someone else has decided to take care of the Three S’s. What about MY needs? Provide people with a second option. I’ll pee in a bucket if you OK it. Just give me something that works, anything!

I shouldn’t have to shower on the ground floor with a wide open window that doesn’t close.

If you want to watch me shower, I expect a generous tip! Similarly, I shouldn’t be able to look into the only bathroom/shower and see people using the only toilet while I’m standing between a couple bushes trying to pee. Don’t brag that you have a toilet and I don’t. It’s not polite.

If I can’t close the window, I should at least be able to close the frosted glass door to the shower/toilet area. But I can’t.

And if I can’t do that? Then I would at least expect that I could close the accordion style shower curtain.

Wishful thinking.

Wanna hang a towel up somewhere in the bathroom? Ha! Dummy.

Wanna put your toiletries bag and clean clothes down somewhere dry? Keep dreaming.

And please explain to me how with all of these things that don’t work…. how you managed to have a bidet installed?

There’s no need. Put a friggin piece of plywood over it and give me a place to put stuff down for petes sake! I’m sure it probably doesn’t work anyways. At least now it would serve some function.

Tired of this rant yet? Too bad… there’s more!

Wanna find your way to your room? Neh. No lights on anywhere.

Oh, you somehow managed to fumble and stumble your way through the dark up the flight of stairs past the constantly beeping alarm? Congrats! Now you can stumble and fumble your way over to your door that has a padlock on it. Yeah. A door that locks from the inside (with no way to get in) AND locks from the outside with no way to get out. Where’s Fire Marshal Bill when you need him?

Don’t you worry kids! If in the event that you found yourself locked in/out of your room, you could always just climb over the top of the door through the gap created from putting a rectangular door in a triangular door frame. You know the one, it’s that same gap that lets tons of light in when someone actually does manage to find the light switch in the hallway.

At least you are in a room right? Yeah, that’s true. A roof over my head right? I shouldn’t complain. Well I’m not in this case. It’s small, but that’s okay with me. I don’t need a hectare to sleep in. The beds are fine even if they are a bit close to each other. Whatever. I told you, I don’t ask for much.

Except… curtains or a screen on the window. Something to keep the bugs out and the light out in the early morning. When you stay up late at night ranting about your crappy hostel, you’re gonna want to get some Z’z so you can be well rested to make a run for it in the morning!

BUAHAH! I thought I was finished with this post… nope. The loud music just started blaring. No sleep for me.

It’s a shame really, I don’t want this to ruin the experiece of the town for me. It seems really nice outside of these walls.

Highway 5 – The South American Version

In many ways, Chile is very similar to California. A long skinny state/country that spans almost the entire length of an America. Chile also happens to have a Highway 5, just like California. And if by some miracle you happened to be in a car driving down highway 5 in Cali, and woke up on highway 5 in Chile, you probably wouldn’t notice the difference. It’s a long two lane highway that runs the length of the country with nothing but fields of sometimes brown, sometimes green grass on either side. The only noticable difference is the size of the mountains in the distance. The Andes dwarf anything you would see running along the 5 in Cali. Oh, and we don’t have people running across the highway in Cali either.

Apparently there’s no way to turn around to go the opposite direction in Chile. Once you pick a direction, that’s it. It’s your direction for the rest of you life. You own it. That’s what happened this morning when we rolled out of Chillan on our way north to Pucón. The thing is though… Pucón is actually south of Chillan. Oh well. Too bad. We’re going north to get there whether we like it or not since there is no way to cross under/over the freeway to get into the southbound lane.

Finally, after driving for what felt like hours we found a way to get to the other side! Now I finally understand why the chicken did it! After all these years! It wasn’t because there was a horse over there…

…but because she could! And it was her only opportunity to head south on the 5. We also seized the opportunity, and we were finally headed in the right direction. That is, until we tried to find La Sala waterfalls. Google Maps couldn’t give us accurate directions (boo), so we were left with instinct.

So much for that plan. We drove down dirt roads, wandering aimlessly trying to follow a river upstream to locate some falls. We tried every logical step to find the stinking water falls, with no such luck. Eventually we came across the town of Yumbel. We were the whitest things to roll into town since Wonder Bread was first introduced here in 1974.

Determined to find the falls, we found an Internet shop (yes even way out here — Chile is ON IT when it comes to Internet) and re-checked Google. It wasn’t really much help other than hinting that it might be the other direction. So back we went. Why?

Because it was all worth it…

Even though the falls were a bit dry due to the dry season, it was still an impressive site.

Not quite Niagara status, but tall, wet, loud, and powerful. And very refreshing too I might add!

After taking a few more photos…

It was time to get back on the road so that we could get to Pucon before sun down. As we’d seen, it was already heard enough finding our destinations in the daylight. So we walked back up to the car, past the obligatory wooden chotzky tourist craps…

…past the cute Chilain girl in her pink dress drinking water from a spout…

…and into the Nissan Platina…

…on our way down South (yes, actually South) on the 5.

Santa Lucía Hill

No commentary on this one (as I’m still trying to catch up), just a few photos of Santa Lucía Hill and Terraza Neptuno.

Our Inauguration To Santiago

Jay booked us on a whirlwind bike tour of Santiago today, so we walked over to La Bicicleta Verde and met our guide and hopped on our green bikes.

Our guide took us around a lot of the historical sites of the city…

…and we learned more about the history of Chile in the course of about an hour than we had in an entire lifetime in the US education system, which is sort if disappointing because there are some interesting stories in their history books, like the suicide of their president at the hand of a gun that was a gift from Fidel Castro!

We also learned about some interesting architecture.

And for the culture portion of the tour, we went to a “cafe with legs” shop. When he described it, we thought it would be something much more taboo, but apparently it’s like the thing everyone does after a hard days work. You go to a coffee shop where sexy women serve you coffee.

I guess if I ever had a reason to start drinking coffee this would be it.

After a latte and legs, we returned the bicicletas to the shop. The ladies at the front desk could sense our Americanness and told us about a pre-inauguration party that we might be interested in at a nearby bar. With nothing else planned, we decided to check out the “No More Bush” fiesta.

The bar had a large projection screen on the wall with CNN coverage of all the details of the night before the big day. Basic Bar is actually run by a group of three Californians, so they had all the essentials, hamburgers, beer, avocado, and RANCH FRICKIN’ DRESSING! Hell ya!

For the party the had a pinata with a photo of Bush’s face on it and an old Chilain women beat the crap out of it! Tell us how you REALLY feel Chile!

I’ve been waiting 8 long years for this moment:

Time Travel

Where am I? What time is it? Who are you? What are you doing reading this? Shouldn’t you be sleeping? Somehow we left New Zealand today 14 hours ago, and the time now is before we left. I didn’t SEE a flux capacitor on board the aircraft, but I guess it had one. Customs sure couldn’t sniff it out.

Maybe “Customs” is just as tired as I am. Sheesh, I need a nap.


Must. Not. Nap. Must power through this to recalibrate.


Huh!? Waa!? Whoops, I must have fallen asleep there for a minute. But now that I’m awake again, let’s go wander downtown Santiago to explore a bit.

Wait, I DID go Back To The Future! Barney is still hip here!

I wanna go Forward To The Past! Get me outta here!

Ahh, I see a light at the end of the tunnel in Plaza de Armas

That tunnel lead farther into downtown where on every corner was a vendor cart selling “Copihue – Jugo de Huesillos”

What the heck IS it? I see everyone buying them. I’m getting one.

It’s sort of hard to describe. It’s kinda like a maple syrup flavored ice tea — with oatmeal in it!


Or figs? Or something. Still not sure what it was. But this brain needs some sleep.

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