Perito Moreno and Calafate

Near Calafate

Near Calafate

My journey to  El Calafate bus station was slightly traumatic, as I still felt a little buggered from a stomach bug I had been dealing with. It’s really the worst time to get something like that, all you want to do is sleep and stay away from people, which you can’t really do on a vacation. I decided to stay on my schedule and sucked it up. I was also worried about the multiple dogs roaming around the streets, as one guy in my hostel said he was bitten by one, though by all accounts I had heard the dogs were quite friendly here.

As anyone knows, taking car or bus rides, or any rides for that matter, is not a pleasant experience when you’re feeling ill. The sensation of moving, and the constant bouncing and stopping all contribute to make it that much worse. Surprisingly my stomach held up alright throughout this leg of the trip, and a few hours later we were in Puerto Natales. I had some time to check the town out before boarding the ferry later that evening, and realizing I had no Chilean currency, made getting some my first order of business. Found an ATM and withdrew some pesos, with plenty of time to look around a bit.

At this point I’m pretty hungry, so I was working up the courage to find a place to eat, with both my stomach and my vegetarianism being major road blocks to the success of the mission. Amazingly, I found a British Café noted in my guidebook, and it was very close to where I was. I spent most of my free time in the town in there, eating carrot cake, drinking orange juice, and having a grand time.

in Calafate

in Calafate

After filling up on veggie goodies, I headed out to the ferry and hopped aboard, my stomach now feeling much better by this point. My home for the next 4 days would be a small bunk with a privacy curtain, reminding me very much of a crematorium. It wasn’t an entirely pleasant, but it was surely an adventure.

The ship too was just as I had heard. It’s a combination ferry, cargo ship and cruise liner, though I was firmly in the cargo ship class quarters. There was a jammed list of activities each day aboard the ship, which would be loudly announced prior to starting. They even updated us constantly as we passed anything of even minor significance, in case anyone wanted to run out on deck and take a look-see. I thought that was a nice touch.

Perito Moreno Glacier

Perito Moreno Glacier

The days aboard the ship were spent carousing with the other guests, eating decent meals (though the selection for myself was rather limited), watching movies, watching the waves, sleeping, reading, drinking, sleeping some more, and gawking at giant icebergs as we passed perilously close by them, at least in my mind. Maybe I’ve seen Titanic too many times.

4 days later and we’ve arrives at Puerto Montt, some 1500 km away from where we began. I was happy I wouldn’t be sleeping in that little bunk in a hallway anymore, but otherwise disappointed that the trip had come to an end. From here I’ll be hopping on a bus and heading back into Argentina, spending a few days in Bariloche on the border. Afterwards it’s a two day trip to Tucaman just in time for the holidays, and after that, no one knows, not even myself.