Friday, October 14, 2005

San pedro days: Searching, Relaxing, and Running

Lee and Me wishing a good New (Hebrew) Year - in the background is Volcano Licancabur


Arriving at San Pedro after sundown, I looked for Lee, and after some looking and poking I found her at her friend`s hostel. After bridging the gap of our different experiences, we past some tranquil days in little and dusty San pedro, celebrating the Jewish new year, Rosh Hashana. After almost 10 days, we booked two tickets for Salta.

Looking for Lee

Well, I must say that looking for a person in a little town is a challenge more than I thought of it when I felt the chilling wind of the Atacama Desert whips through my hair. Shouldering my Muchila, I thanked a guy that offered me a hostel for the night, and did my way through the little dusty allies of San Pedro, trying to figure out how the hell you can find an Israeli friend in this touristy town. However, I knew Lee was staying in a hostel that it`s owner was also a drum player (or more accurately, that’s what I remembered from Lee`s description). Without a name, it was even a tougher task, as I realized that drum players were a common thing in San Pedro. Great!
I went through some of the places that resembled Lee`s description, looking for a place with bone fire and drums. Well, bone fires I found a lot, but no drums! After asking a guy in front of the many touristy restaurant about a guy playing the drums and owning a hostel, I finally managed to get a name of a place. “Try La Casona , I think there is a guy there who plays the drums and also have an hostel”. Promising, I went down
Caracoal streettill I found the lighted sign. Peering through the framed windows, I saw indeed a set of drums, a double blue color . Looks promising! But alas, the were unmanned and after fighting my poor espanol with the rapid talking cashier girl, I managed to understand that the band (A BAND?!) was suppose to play around 8:30 PM. Checking out the display, I found that I have an hour to burn. Damn, burn I will, but not with a 20 kg Muchila strapped on my back. Well, I knew of a good place I was staying last time and, as I entered Vilacoyo hostel, I immediately remembered the hostess from my last stay and she lead the way to a single-bed room. The price sounded reasonable and my backpack was quickly set to the floor, making my back sound relief sounds). I had a bit of a time, and I was hungry as hell so after chewing down an empanada I went straight away back to the restaurant. On the way I kept on looking through restaurants openings and at faces of small Chilean women, hoping to “just stumble” into the familiar face of Lee…but, no, it would not be that easy!
Looking through the window of La Casona , I found the drums still lonesome, and with only time on my hand, I just sat there waiting patiently. At least I have a hostel to sleep in till the morning, and if I wont find her tonight, I will definitely going to find her tomorrow morning. As I was planning my options, I saw that the hostess was clearly aware of my patience and waiting, so she made a cellular call and told me that the guy is coming in five minutes. Great! I was waiting for couple of minutes more when suddenly an elder and thin man came in, holding a Churango. The hostess referred to me and I was delighted to see that the guy was talking English, so I could explain him my situation. As I was speaking with him, though, I had the feeling that this is not the guy Lee was talking about. He was too elderly, and also I missed some facial factor that Lee referred in an after mention. As we walked to the entrance, I asked him if he is playing the drums and have a hostel, a funny thing to ask a guy I know. He seemed a bit in loss with my question and I had the feeling that I was missing the target completely. I asked him if in his hostel a young Israeli women is staying and he looked at me with puzzlement. Damn, is it possible that I have mistaken? As I was starting to think what I should do next, he mentioned they are suppose to play now but afterwards will take me to the hostel. As he finished his speech, three Chilean guys came from the dusty street and entered the lighted entrance, passing by while throwing some words in their quick and impossible to understand Spanish. I have noticed that one was carrying a guitar, another one carrying a Peruvian flute and the third came bare handed. Before I could comprehend if the bare handed guy was Lee’s friend, I have noticed that they were arranging themselves around the instruments in the corner of the restaurant, and the guy that carried the guitar sat behind the sets of . Is that Lee’s friend? I asked myself with only a second to ponder over the possibility, as the elder man talked with him and I saw that the guitar guy looked at me intently. Yep, I told my self, that’s the guy! Good, I was happy that I didn’t have to postpone “the search” to the next day’s morning. He left his seat and came toward me, smiling and shaking my hand saying “I am Rafael, Lee’s friend, you must be Chen”. I told him he is correct and asked where is Lee, and he replied that Lee is in the hostel, but they need to play some half an hour and only then they could show me where the house was. OK…So I sat down at the corner of the restaurant dinning room and listened to them play some damn good Peruvian-style music, with the flute, the guitar and Churango. It was good tunes to hear and I enjoyed the environment, while pondering why not just telling me where the house was. Well, I quickly found out why…After playing three melodies, they suddenly put everything aside and Rafael signaled me to wait five minutes more and then we go. Cool!
And indeed, after five minutes I saw Rafael coming back with dark poncho covering his whole body and a bicycle at his side. Bicycle? Why they need bicycle?? Going out of the restaurant, Rafael asked me if I would like to take a bicycle, and as I didn’t cared much how I would move myself, I said why not. So we climbed the bicycles and quickly we were paddling through San Pedro’s unknown and semi-dark alleys, while I grasp that the house was damn far from the center of town. We paddled like five minutes or even ten till we reached the house, where a big Labrador dog jumped all over Rafael with joy and enthusiasm while Rafael laughed and tried to calm down the dog’s overwhelming joy. We entered the asienda, and after knocking on the left door I could hardly hear someone talking from inside and peering into the dark room through the slit in the opening of the door, I could distinguish the contour of not else but Lee, still absorbed in the deep sleep she was in only a minute before. Her surprised-puzzled face with the accompanied “Hey, what are you doing here??” made me grin. After she arranged the room a bit and Rafael left back to the restaurant, we sat down and bridged the gap of time and experiences that accompanied it. It was a good talk over tea, each one telling only a bit about what he was going through in the passing three weeks. After two hours like this, Rafael and the gang came back from the restaurant and I felt the tiring day settle on me almost immediately. Before we parted we talked about meeting tomorrow afternoon for a lunch and maybe to see if we are going to do something. On the way, I asked Rafael if they have a room for me in the hostel and how much it will cost me and he told me there is a room but it will cost me as much as I pay for my room in the hostel Vilacoyo. Getting into the hostel room, I have decided not to move to Rafael`s hostel and to stay in lovely Vilacoyo.

The Fear Factor
The next day I woke up early, as usual, and over a breakfast I got to know a nice Australian couple that by the end of the talk agreed to exchange a book with me. Well, let’s say that I never thought that a book can give so much to think of…But it did, and it served as a time burner in the days of hot San Pedro…
I have met Lee in the plaza around mid day, with Rafael, which didn’t have anything to do in any case, and didn’t mind to join in. After lunch, we strolled outside San pedro in the overall northern direction toward the Pokara de Quitor, a ruin complex 3 km north of San pedro. Reaching the ruins, I have strolled around and saw the great Licancabur volcano in the distance and thought it would be nice to capture it with the stars. Only when I returned with Lee and Rafael back to San pedro did I grasp that that place is a perfect place to capture such a picture: The dry air keeps the sky clear most of the time of clouds, the height keeps you upper in the atmosphere and the remoteness far from any big city keeps the skies clear of any halo of urban lights. It was perfect! I departed from Lee and told her that we might meet later, but at the end I had a different idea • to go to the place at night! Well, after I arranged some warm clothing and my camera equipment, I shouldered my pack and after telling the hostel lady that I am going, I started walking around 8 PM north bound.
After ten minutes I found for the first time that walking in pitch black is not as easy as I thought…I suddenly went into a barn field, seeing the path going deep into the field, feeling I lost it somewhere. I looked around, and finally, I found the main path and continue on walking as the street lights were left behind me and in front of me only blackness as an endless pit. I switched my headlamp and continue on, keeping the pace but also aware of fear gripping me step by step more and more tight. I was VERY tense, very jumpy and every movement, voice and sound me stop and listen. Even with a flash light it was impossible to see anything which was more than 10 meters away, which made even more aware of the sounds that I heard. Rafael told me earlier it is safe to walk at night, but surprises are also common, and I didn’t want to show in the Lonely Planet stories and statistics of robberies…So, walking at a fast pace (KEZEV SHESH, for those of you who were in the IDF), I was always looking around, looking and inspecting and trying to maintain sanity. NOTHING, nothing could be seen, but for the amazing stars that shone millions of light years from me, far from any grasp or reach. All the time I was walking like this I mumbled to myself “keep cool, nothing will happen, just keep fuckn cool and all will be fine, there is no reason to fear”. And it was very hard, very-very hard, believe me, to maintain fear underneath and to ignore it completely. I was not alone, however. Dogs, numerous of them, looked at me from the darkness that surrounded us all, and while fear and ego made them bark, my fear just made me glance at them with my Petzel headlamp (making their eyes glow in the dark like 4-leged daemons…) and lift a stone in my hand, if one of them will even think of getting to closer…). With the passing time, and the fact that I was already getting used to walking in total darkness, the fear loosened it`s grip, only for a short time till I heard something moving in the darkness, then I would stop, glance around, and after I would not hear anymore, I would continue walking. The path, a wide dirt road, was also hard from time to time to identify, as it went parallel to the San pedro river, but sometimes crossing it, making me wander into the dry river bed instead of walking on the more comfortable path. Then I would wander around, with the headlamp at maximum lighting strength, looking for the damn path…Finally, after tensing 30 minutes walk, I came to the nice plaza where I planned to make the picture.
If I thought that the walk was a frightening experience, well, lets say that it was nothing to stand under the great old tree in that deserted plaza, among the reddish hills of the San pedro area. And to make matters worse, I knew there was a cave nearby, and I didn’t have a clue whether someone can live inside and might jump on me from the dark. Yeah, I was paranoid, and totally AFRAID! I didn’t like also the idea that suddenly I have to stay put for 3 hours in total darkness, when somebody can find me and jump on me (without even mentioning the wild animals that stray across the desert grounds, looking for goodies…). I managed to distract myself from all these terrible and freezing thoughts by focusing on the matter at hand • arranging the photo location for the picture taking, while considering several technical issues. I pressed the shutter release button, and then went with my backpack to lie down somewhere. Silence, darkness and my own fear surrounded me immediately, and I could hear my blood rushing frantically through my ears veins running but not hiding. It took me 15 minutes till I calmed down enough to even think about taking out the book and the flash light. Without mentioning the technical problem involved in opening a flash light near a set of long exposure unexposed film absorbing every piece of light coming through the lens, I was afraid that I will expose my self for km`s away. Logically thinking, I knew that there is no reason for nobody to come to this rural place at night, but my fear was in domination no matter how hard I tried to kick it out of the house of my thoughts.
In those 15 minutes I also started to hear a sound of rolling stones (not the band..) from my right side. Looking at the approximate direction, I could not see anything beyond 5 meters from me. The sound stopped, and after couple of seconds it started again. Damn, who is walking down the hill at this time of night?! I didn’t know what to do, as the sound kept on appearing and disappearing. Only when I was accustomed to the darkness fully, I was able to distinquish that it was the low growing palm trees branches and leaves that made the sound when the sof wind hit it and made them brush one with the other…You could not even imagine the degree of my relief I felt when I finally found out what is the reason for this noise.
I found a way to diverge the light only to a thin slit of light, which lighted the printed text of the book, and no sooner than I started to read the lines and paragraphs, I found my self laughing or crying with voice when I was enlighten with some kind of universal truth I didn’t know about or a new perspective coming into my mind. Soon, I also found the place to be bitter cold, and even after wrapping my self with all the garments I had, I still was cold under the treatment of the soft but constant desert wind. Time passed by, and at a certain point I decided to cut short the star trail. After two and a half hours I got up and closed the shutter while wrapping all my other stuff. In five minutes, I was already out of there, walking fast back down the almost unseen path in that dark night. After so much time in total darkness I felt secure and fear was a past experience, an experience of an inexperienced and blind person. While walking past the barking dogs and the dark houses I realized that the darkness was only within me, and that simple experience of the passing time in the darkness enabled me to master the disability of not using the most frequent tool a man can use: his two eyes. Rethinking the whole walk I gripped something which is so fundamental and simple: the only difference between walking in day time in comparison to walking in night time is only the loss of one sense, an important one at that, but still • it is the same location! Indeed, there are places that are not secure only in night time, but this tendency to fear from the surrounding darkness is a survival and education habit, which is most of time not necessary. Some of you will giggle to read my “revelation”, but surprising as it might seem, my fear from darkness has lost some of it`s grip over me. Indeed, in some places I will be very suspicious and cautious, but in places were I know I am safe, I will walk freely similarly to day time.
Well, returning to the San Pedro valley, I was walking fast and fearless, but at the same time I found it very hard to find the path from time to time. I had to search the place to find the real and solid path. One time, I saw a vehicle parked with the engine running at idle and apart from the car`s lights, it was impossible to identify the persons inside the dark car. It was at one of those places which I was not sure were to walk, and wasn’t sure which path lead back to town and which one might lead to other places. After wandering around with my headlamp, and also back and forth the path where the vehicle was parking, I decided to choose the reasonable path. I continued on walking fast and eventually I came back to lighted area of town and by midnight I entered the quiet hostel. Half an hour later I was in deep sleep.

What is it to be an Istaeli?
Time past slowly and relaxing in San Pedro, when around the afternoon I met with Lee and in the time in between I was reading this wonderful book I have exchanged, “The road less traveled” by Scott M. Peck, an excellent philosophical and psychological book which broadened my perspectives about life, love and human relationships.
While I was not into this book, I talked with three German lovely people: Hayo, 34 and Niva, 26, and also with Wolfgang (Wolf for short). Niva`s father is Chilean and her family has a house in colorful Valpraiso. Hayo, which is a boat builder (kind of a specialist carpenter) was living in Greece for the past two years with beautiful Niva and after enough Mediterranean Sun, they decided that it`s time to move on and see other places. Wolf, on the hand, was taking a two months vacation in South America from his work as a German-Italian translator in north .
I have started to talk with the three one evening when I prepared for my self a tea to relief my throat ached (the nocturnal walk was not without any payment, a serious cold). Hayo have noticed me talking Hebrew with other travelers and told me that he traveled several times to and that he like the country very much. I was surprised to find someone who traveled to in the last decade, not to mention that he visited when the real bloodshed was happening. Indeed, as I sensed, Hayo experienced the mentality and reality in a way that most tourists are not familiar with.
Hajo was just visiting his friends in Tel-Aviv for the first time when suddenly a phone rang in the room that evening on that sad-sad Saturday evening of the 4th of November 1995. “As you must know for yourself, bad news travel faster between one friend and another, faster than the media itself”. The shocked Israeli’s friends went straight to Kikar Malchey Israel (Israel’s Kings square) the location where a massive peace protest was taking place until those three deadly bullets ripped the elderly body of Itzhak Rabin, the Prime Minister at that time. It was a time of rage, of insanity and loss of control, times that almost every Israeli would have gladly turned back. The square, as those of you know or were there (as well as Hayo saw it), was filled with crying people, with mourning people but mostly with shocked people, not gripping what have taken place only an hour before. “I was surprised, even shocked, to see so many Israeli’s mourne and even cry in public for the loss of the Prime Minister,” he said bluntly, and to my question of how would Germans react to such an event he answered even more bluntly “well, they will be surprised, but surely not mourn or be in grief as I saw the Israelis that evening.”
Hayo was full of questions, some time even more than I could answer I must admit, and some of them were about the Army. After answering him some of his military questions, he commented that other Israeli that he talked with answered to his question that “he is not allowed to talk about military issues as it is a secret”. Well, I told Hayo, I don’t know what you asked him but if those questions were similar to what you asked me, I think you could find much more on the internet. On one occasion we talked about the increasing involvement of women in the IDF, even combat duties, and I told him the story how Corporal Alice Miller decided she want to enlist to the Israeli Air Force, and nothing, but surely nothing, will stop her from achieving an equal chance as being an Air Force Cadet in the IAF. The fact that she achieved her will to enlist (but not to fly) to the Air Cadet course, made it possible for other women to enlist (and to fly) in the Israeli Air Force. I continued and explained him that being a front line infantry is a pressurized duty, with physical effort that most women can not handle due to physical differences. I also added that it is a difficult mental experience to be an infantry, especially in these times, when bullets are flying and ricocheting around your post all day and all night for weeks without an end. “Listen, I was not down there in Gaza strip, but I am sure that if I were there guarding and fighting, I would have surely lost my nerves. Every sane human being which is under fire at night for several days without an end can loose it, and start shooting at whatever moves in the vicinity, just to stop that damn fuckn war!” Hayo looked at me for a moment, absorbing, and then said: “I never thought about it, I have never known about this point of view. I knew only of the Palestinians side, what the media kept on feeding us all”. Wolf came and joined us from time to time and shared his own thoughts, but mostly I and wolf talked about philosophical issues, as well as astronomy and the EUR situation.

New Year, New Experiences
No, your computer date is fine. The Jewish first day of the year is celebrated according to the Jewish Calendar and thus ever changing according to the Gregorian. This year the eve of Rosh Hashana, New Year was taking place at the 3rd of October, Monday evening and Lee and I decided to celebrate it together. On the same occasion, we decided to write a greeting on a white sheet of paper ( Bristol ). After purchasing the paper, we went to my hostel to write it down. Lee asked me if I have good hand writing and I just giggled for the good joke. So, she started to write the whole thing, which was really nice, but she was not that enthusiastic over it, and asked me that maybe I will try a go. So, I picked up the pencil and started writing it down. Well, lets say that she wont forget my declaration of “I have such a good hand writing I can not read it…” as she said that I was trying to hide my beautiful hand writing (shucks, mom, you should have been there to hear her…)…Actually, almost everyone of you old guys in Israel would have been amazed to hear her saying that (I was too, believe me…). Well, to tell you the truth (and only that, of course…) I made some effort to make my hand writing feasible to a 6 year old reading. Not surprising, as I was not urged to write at a speaking speed, right? So, after we had accomplished the writing mission, it was time for photo mission. Where should we take the picture? With the volcano behind us or the peculiar faces near the ruins? What do you think we did? Of course, we did both, even if it demanded to walk 3 km in the mid of the hottest hours of the day. We love you all, so we are doing the best we can! As it goes with the tradition, there is no such thing as a Jewish holiday without a feast starting or finishing the event (better both we say!). So, it was feast time!
Well, as Lee keeps Kosher, meat was out of the question and out of the menu. So, we decided to go for a winner: Pasta. How original, doesn’t it? Original it might not be, but it was sure a damn good meal! Good ole tomato sauce with generous grated Parmesan sprayed all over.
We decided that only one Chef will be in the house (I almost lost my head back in Cusco when I still didn’t know what Lee can or imply to do with a butcher knife…) and we agreed that Lee will be the one (as long as the tomato were the ones to feel the edge of the knife…). That was fine by me; I just kept on talking and talking while she worked her way through the Spartanian kitchen of the hostel’s kitchen. We bought a good Chilean wine (Expotacion) and after saying the prayers, eating an apple with honey (rare as gold in San Pedro!) we continue on to chow the delicious dish, while continuing talking (another good reason to eat, to shut me up a bit…). It was a great talk, with great mood and good combination of food and wine! Around 11 and a bit Rafael and the gang came in and we offered them the leftovers, even though they already dined in the Restaurant (at the end I gripped that Melissa, the house dog, chewed it to the end…). I was tired from the day and left to the hostel, filled and happy!

The race for Garden of Eve
Some of you folks who actually keep reading my blog won’t understand what the hell I did in San Pedro for a week and a half, and that’s after I have been there already for five days six months ago, when traveling with Stefan. Well, I actually could have managed couple of days in town, but guess what? Yep, Lee had to wait for another (!) package…Well, not that I suffered there, no I didn’t! But it was still funny to hear her say to me one day after I came back to town: “Hey, guess what? I am waiting for another package!”.
So, around Thursday I felt that it was time to go and when I actually planned on maybe leaving Friday morning, Lee came into my hostel with her dictionary. I told her about my plan and she agreed to the date. So, it was settled that on Friday the 7th of October I will finally cross the border into . We wondered around town with Rafael and after a short chow Rafael took us to a location of Dust Devils field (or more appropriately, Sand Devils) rising high around mid afternoon. Lee told me she saw several of those “Devils” and she hopes we might see them again. Well, let’s say that we waited by a low tree and after waiting for 30 minutes we returned a bit disappointed back to town. We had to pack our stuff, and I had to buy the tickets.
Two companies travel from San Pedro to Salta in : Gemini and Pullman . The later is more expensive by 8 USD, and as me and Lee don’t have too much money, even couple of dollars counts. Walking to Gemini office, I was surprised to see that the office was closed and it will only open the next day at 10 am. Shit. The next bus will be on Sunday, and I didn’t plan on staying the weekend in San Pedro, I wanted to see !! So, I went to the other company, and they indeed were also leaving tomorrow morning, 9:30 am (better) and had the last three seats available. Perfect!
Only, the girl on the other side of the counter told me she need the passport numbers…OOPPS….hmm, cant we give it later?? No, you cant she replied and went back to her business…Shieze!!! Lee was packing 20 minutes walk from me, and I didn’t know if the tickets will be availabe in the 40 minutes it will take me to get to her and back…the tickets are also bought in Calama (the origin of the bus) and it was likely to be sold out quite quickly…Can I reserve?? No…
damn! I remembered that Rafael has a cellular, but the number was in my email. I rushed out of the office across the plaza to the internet point and slammed dunk into the seat clicking the keyboard like a maniac. The internet was slower than ever, and when it was uploading my email inbox screen I was ready with a pen and a piece of paper. I scribbled fast the number and dashed to the phones. I asked the representative what should I press before entering the number and in the rush of things I got it wrong and wasted a couple of moments. Finally, I managed to get a line and called Rafael. I don’t know where I caught him and hoped he will be in the hostel (which was exactly where he was…). He gave me Lee and I quickly explained to her what was needed and after a minute she came back to the phone with the number. I scribbled fast the number, said goodbye and rushed outside not before paying the charge for the call and internet usage. I walked fast, hoping the tickets are not sold out, and once there I was glad to see it was indeed the situation. PPHHEEEWWW!
OK, so we started entering Lee`s passport number and name and then, suddenly, the girl asks for her birth date. What the ****?? Hmm, chica, is it possible to skip this? I asked her, seeing more trouble as the seconds pass. No, she replied indifferently, it is necessary for the police check at the border. ****!!!!
I don’t understand, why, why things have to be so god damn complicated?!
Hmm….well, only two hours ago we talked about birthdays and Lee actually told me part of it: the month and year. But the lady here wants it all! I could have guessed with around 1/30 chance of bull`s-eyeing the exact date, but then again, most probable I wont. As I was calculating the chances and what would happen if I miss, I noticed that the office has a telephone. Perfecto! I could give a ring from here! Can I use the phone to call and ask? The girl looked at me with a funny look and before she could speak I told here I will pay for the call, she nodded in agreement. Fantastic! I picked the handle and was about the push the numbers, when I remembered that I might need some kind of cellular access number and enquired about it. “ha, you can not call to cellular phone from this extension…”. SHEIZE!!!!!!
What should I do? Should I risk a minor falsifying? Or should I go and call Rafael again and risk loosing the tickets? In Bolivia I would not even have the dilemma from the first place, but I am messing here with the Chilean-Argentinean border police • they can really check the god damn validity of the passport against the ticket info. Fuck it, I said, I am going to through a wonder number hoping I would be either lucky or either wasting my time because nobody is gonna check it in the first place. I clicked “10-5-79” and hoped for the best. I passed the registration of my own details (thank god for that!) and then the girl asked for the 40K pesos for both tickets (a shit-load of money, 40 USD for a 12 hour ride, a ripoff…). As I was pulling my secret wallet, I found out that I short of 5000 Peso…Oh, god, I forgot I had to switch companies!! I was short of 10 bucks! After all what I have been through?! Is there any chance I can pay with Dollars? I asked hoping for the impossible…No…Shit…Is there is any chance I can pay now 35K pesos and pay the rest in five minutes time? I pressed, almost pleading, and the girl thought for a crucial second and said OK. Sweet ass!! There is a lord up there!! (no there is not, but I was that close to believe in him…). While I heard the printer running down the page, I was out of the office, walking less frantically toward the closest ATM. In whole San Pedro there were two ATMs, surprisingly good for the small size of it, and I went to the one closest to the Plaza. I remembered that it was not functioning and I thought I might be lucky a bit more. Well, no chance, miracles don’t just happen. Damn, I had to cross the width of San Pedro for the next one, and I was not sure I will have money there. What then?? Well, I could always exchange with a crazy rate of 20% commission, but I decided that I will wait till I will loose any other chance to withdraw from the machine. Lucky for me, I managed to pull out a hundred dollar in Pesos (I needed also to pay to the hostel, another big chunk of dollars…). I went back to the office, totally relaxed and handed the rest of the money to the girl. She handed me the tickets to Salta and I was curious to see out details. Well, it took me couple of minutes and some inquiries to grasp that there is no name, no passport number and not a shred of a date birth. Apart from some inner counting number and seat number, nothing was written on the ticket. SO WHY THE HELL YOU MADE ME RUN LIKE A DOG?!?! Well, I knew the question, even when my conscious didn’t want to believe it: a different sheet of paper contained all the details for the border passing (the next day, when we crossed the border, however, I realized that someone copied the details wrong and misspelled my name…)
The next day we parted from Rafael and climbed the bus, finally, to go to !

Hasta Luego, Chile, Bienvenidos Argentina!!

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