I'm a Deaf vagabond currently living in Montréal. Bicycles dominate my life, but I also make time for climbing, hiking, camping, and cats. And if I have time left over after all that, I write about it.
El Calafate: the place everybody has in mind when they picture Patagonia. In reality, Patagonia encompasses the southern half of Argentina and Chile. The land area measures 1.043 million km² and is, to the guanacos’ delight, mostly flat.
I watched the terrain pass underneath me from 30,000 feet for the duration of the one hour and forty-five minute flight from Trelew to El Calafate. Other than blue ribbons of sharply bending rivers, I spied with my little eye a whole lot of earth-toned nothingness. It was the desert, the world’s 8th largest and the least-talked-about!
When Mélissa enthusiastically proposed the idea of snorkeling with the sea lions, I didn’t have the heart to tell her that I wasn’t into forced wild animal encounters. I’ve never held a koala or pet a tiger. Posing with animals isn’t fooling anybody into thinking you’re Tarzan: we know you’re just another tourist with money.
In my last post, I mentioned being slightly disappointed about our time in Punta Delgada with the all-female herd of elephant seals.
The biggest disappointment of my trip to Patagonia, however, would have to be awarded to the Argentinean croissant.
What made this so painful was how all these cafés had been hyped about offering it on their menus. “Medialunas!” Their sandwich boards would exclaim. They were such a popular menu item that they were often sold out. We had to try three different cafés before we got our croissant.
The title of my last post was “Suffering for adventure.” My trip may have started with hours of discomfort on a plane, but I had also escaped Montréal‘s first major snowfall of the winter.
It was -20°C (-4°F) the morning we left Montréal. When we touched down in Trelew, Argentina 24 hours later, it was 37°C (98°F). A temperature difference of 57 degrees… WHAT?!
I had checked the weather the day before and made myself fully prepared with shorts and a tank top stowed in my carry-on. While my Montréal pals were traipsing through thigh-deep snow, I was getting my sweat on!
My elbows and scarred up knees were exposed for the majority of our time on the Valdes Peninsula. I was showing off my articulation the day we visited the seemingly inarticulate Magellanic penguins at the Punta Tombo rookery, 250 or so kilometres south of the peninsula.
There was a post about the process dated January 24, 2005, but it’s mainly me complaining about having to peel a lot of oranges. The thrilling post was supposed to come once Pruno was ready (but probably not safe) for consumption.
That day did not come, because we forgot about Pruno until I brought it up in a MSN conversation months later. (I’m “bolo throwing champion of 1976”.)
Out of respect for the people no longer in my life, I have edited out their real names.
Preface: This post was originally published on 10/12/2006. I was living in Victoria at the time and working as a maid. My early 20s was a constant battle against lecherous weirdos vying for my attention. I’m not sure whether the reason I don’t run into these situations as often anymore is because I’m now in my crusty mid-30s or because I’ve trained myself to flat-out ignore any guy who tries to stop me on the streets. I suspect it’s both.