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Trails & Techno_Text_December 22

Trails & Techno_Text_December 22

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Published by Patrick Archer
Trails and Techno: A South American Odyssey is the tale of two young Americans dodging Corporate America long enough for a 30-day, 120-beats-per-minute journey through Argentina, Chile, Boliva and Peru.

Trails and Techno: A South American Odyssey is the tale of two young Americans dodging Corporate America long enough for a 30-day, 120-beats-per-minute journey through Argentina, Chile, Boliva and Peru.


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Published by: Patrick Archer on Dec 23, 2008
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial No-derivs


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El Mercurio 
The Mercury 
. Chile
smost popular daily newspaper.San lunes:Saint Monday.A self-proclaimed holiday when onechooses not go to work on Mondayafter a long weekend.Vamos al aeropuerto:We
re goingto the airport.
is the first personplural form of the verb
ir (to go) 
.piojo:kid, child
 Yet another day of international transit. Today would see us makingtwo separate flights in two different countries on two competing airlines.Today also marked the first leg of our journey into Perú, the third countron our itinerary. With packs full and energy levels depleted, Andy and I were both dragging our feet when the alarms sounded at 5:30.Compounding the obvious sleep deprivation and liver irrigation was ahealthy dose of Sunday guilt for our hedonistic behavior over the pastseventy-two hours in Santiago. In retrospect, it was a miracle that one of us had not ended up in the
hospital or on the front page of 
El Mercurio.
 After showering and packing, we cranked out a quick “thank younote to John who was still sleeping on his day off. We could only assume that he was either havingsweet dreams about
 waking upto an empty 
apartment ornightmares that we would neverleave. The feelings of guilt overour three-day imposition werelessened dramatically by the factthat John had been a willingparticipant in our Santiago beveragefest. So much so that we couldimagine John starting the week off with a much-deserved
San lunes 
. Without making a sound, we left our note on the kitchen counter andsnuck out the front door. Outside on
 Avenida O’Higgins 
, we immediately flagged down a cab to the airport at 7:00.Given our current states of mind and stomach, the choice of taxiscould not have been worse. The
did not look a day over eighteen,leading us to believe that he was borrowing the cab from
. When wetold him “
Vamos al aeropuerto
,” his eyes lit up. Even though we were notin a hurry to make our 9:00 flight, the
 was obviously watering atthe mouth. The adrenaline-tinged grin on his face reflected his exuberance
domingo22 de diciembreSantiago de Chile a Arequipa, Perú
Destino: Arequipa, PerúModo: Avión y TaxiDistancia:515 kilómetros
D L M M J D L M M J D L M M J D L M M J D L M M J V V V V V  
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 
8 9 10 11 12 13 14 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 
“Peanuts, Mister Bond?” 
Carla surveys the aisle
at having the chance to Renault redlinethrough Santiago’s nearly desertedSunday morning streets. I say “nearly”because we had more than one closecall with slow-moving pedestrians andcyclists downtown.Forty kilometers and fifteenminutes later, the rebel
pulleddirectly into a reserved parking spot and wished us well up north. Onceinside
 Arturo Merino Benítez Internacional 
, we checked in at the
counter and headed to the
salón de desembarque.
Andy caught up on the current issueof 
The Economist 
while I dined on a scrambled eggsandwich chased with some lukewarm
café con leche 
. As expected, the
flight backed away fromthe gate on time at 9:00. Once again, the in-flight food was nothing short of spectacular:
 panqueques con dulce dleche, pan, una copa de  fruta, yogur con sabor de  frutilla, jugo
. The quality of thefare was only surpassed by the beauty of the
on board. One green-eyedblonde in particular named Carla left usboth speechless. At 11:30, we touched down in thenorthernmost city in Chiles Atacama Desert, Arica. Only a handful of adjectives like “flat” and “arid” could be used to describe the
City of Eternal Spring 
. Still, this town of 140,000 has an oasis-like quality thanks to thedark-sand Pacific beaches that are quite popular with Chileans andBolivians alike. In addition to being a convenient beach outlet, landlockedneighbor Bolivia depends on Arica as its main port.
Santiago Hyperspace 
Han Piojo’s Millenium Taxi
Arid Extra Extra Dry Palm ConcourseFlowers Give Our LifAn Eternal Spring 
Hot Tarmac in AricaArica International
n de desembarque:airport gatecopa de fruta:fruit cupsabor de frutilla:strawberry flavorcasa de cambio:currency exchangecerrado:closed.
Signs in the Desert
Atacama Burma Shave 
Inside the Arica terminal we grabbed our
and tracked downa
, Manuel, who would take us north across the Chilean border toTacna, Perú for 10,000 pesos. That rate seemed reasonable consideringthat Manuel would handle all of our paperwork at the Chile/Perú border. We piled into the back seat of hisolive green four-door Chevy and racedthrough the Atacama on an empty stretch of unpaved two-lane road.Minutes later, a small toll booth roseon the horizon. Unfortunately thelanes leading into Perú were not dividedinto
Exact Change 
Change Receipts 
. Evidently, our options included
Stop and Get out of the Car 
Turn Around and Go Back to Chil
. We assumed that Manuel had optedfor the former when he stopped the car and asked for our passports.Less than an hour later, we were in Tacna where Manuel dropped usoff downtown. When we inquired about local currency, he told us that we could change our Chilean pesosfor Peruvian
nuevos soles 
around thecorner. After paying and thankingManuel, we set off in search of a
casade cambio.
Interestingly, every window had a “
” sign which wetook as a bad omen. In fact, the only group conducting businessdowntown was a merry band of calculator-toting street peddlers on thesteps of a small church. It turned out that these locals
Tacna’s officialexchange bank and, according to our weathered travel guide, would giveus the best peso to
nuevos soles 
rate possible. With fresh Peruvian jack in hand, we crossed the street to a small caféfor some lunch and relaxation. Andy commented on my bravery foreating
un sandwich de pollo
in this less-than-sanitary environment. The

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