Thursday, May 17, 2007

Hitchhiking the Caretera Austral - Chile

The Caretera Austral – Chile

Melanie and Stephane, a mixed couple. She is from Nirenberg, Germany and he is from Denmark. She is a massage therapist and he is a traveling carpenter. We Hitchhiked a long way on the Ruta 40 in Argentina and crossed the border to Chile in a small town called... Chile chico. We passed the Argentinian border around 5 o'clock and started walking towards chile. We tought it is no more than a pleasant one hour walk, but the hour became two and then three and a half and eventualy we walked 14 km with fully loaded backpacks and arrived at the chilean border on the last minte before closing time.
We stayed in Chile chico for 2 nights sleeping in a camping area inside an apple orchid. One special thing about this tiny town. The council had put speakers all around the streets and they play elevator music around the day time. I don't know who was the D.J. when we were there, but we enjoyed a beautiful lazy after noon walking in the streets listening to frank Sinatra, The Blues Brothers, Burt Bacharacht and the best of the best, the Pink Panther theme. It was funny and awkward, especially after a bottle of red wine we finished by the lake side. We steped into a shithole bar and ordered another bottle of wine to preserve the athmosphere. In the bar they played an even more obscure music collection. It seems that the 80's are a big thing in Chile and everywere we went, the 80's were behind us, but now they have been mutated. Instead of playing terrible songs one after the other, they have these nasty mixed cd's which play a collection of 200 songs, carefuly selected, all mixed on the same beat, and playing each song for no more than 20 seconds. So, eventualy you get a very very very long 80's medley song. Ahhhhhh !!!
we tried to avoid the music and drank the first bottle as fast as we could. We had a nice little talk about our ambitions in life and somehow we got to talk about the german history and the new german generation who have to cary the wheight of their dark history. We came to the conclusion that every nation is racist in a way and we are lucky to be educated enough to learn from our past, travel the world and meet diferent cultures. By the time we finished this conversation another empty bottle was dropped on the floor. By now we forgot everything we talked about and unwillingly we were concentrated on the music. Melanie came with a bright idea. A game. Who's the first to recognise the songs. She didn't know who she is dealing with. I beat the shit out of them mastering the 80's music scene with names like Paul Young, Curiosity killed the cat, Samantha Fox, Sandra, snap, Charlie goes to Holywood, lionel ritchie, Ace of base and more and more awful instant pop idols. I was very happy to discover that i did not know shit about early euro dance music.
We finished this afternoon with 4 empty bottles and a great appetite. We were already well drank.we zig-zaged our way to the orchard and cooked some meat on the fire. We fell asleep like babies without feeling in was getting below zero outside the tent.

We moved on. Got very lucky with the hitchhiking, jumping on every vehicle who stoped. No matter what kind. We spent 4 days like that enjoying the company of each other.
On the 5th night we cooked a dinner in another camping ground on a town called Puyuhuaypy. I don't know why or where, i asked Melanie for her parents names. She told me her father's name is Adolf and her mother's name i can't remember. Then i asked her if this name is common in Germany. She sayed NO!!. Actually, this name hardly ever exists and also the surename Hitler. The people who had this name, had changed it after the war,not to hold the discrace. So, in a very naive way i asked her how come her father is named Adolf. She hesitated. Stephane, who was already drinking some wine and had no shame in anyway, interupted and said “ because your grandfather was a little Natzi!”. The room was silent. She agreed without saying a word, and i couldn't ask her anything about her history. At that moment something had changed and all the warm feelings i had for her were frozen by this awful disclosure. I tried to remember the conversation we had a few days before and to overcome my instincts and feelings, but unfortunatly i couldn't. I could see her in the same light as before, altough she was a clean and beautiful soul.
We separeted after that day. Nothing dramatic, i just needed to go by myself. I also wanted to make this bad feeling towards her to go away, as i was also feeling guilty for judging her with my heart.

I want to see them again and have some good time. I hope it will happen. And mostly i hope that i would be able to discard and forget these negative feelings.

I kept hitchiking north on the Carretera Austral. Got stuck in a town called La Junta after 2 days of non stop heavy rains. I discovered that night that my tent was not as waterproof as promised by the salesman who sold it to me. I had a terrible wet night and then another long day of standing and waiting for a car to arrive. Non had arrived. At the end of the day, aaround 5 c'clock, after 8 hour of standing in the gas station, a car stopped, but only to tell me that the road is blocked due to the heavy rains and i shouldn't try to hitch anymore for that day. DOHHHHH!!

I found a room in a nice litte family house. I met a fishing instructor who took me for a fishing ride and tought me some techniques in Trout fishing wit a fly. I guess it is a good compensation for the long wait and rainy nights.

After La Junta i decided to leave this rainy area and move back to Argentina. I was welcomed with bright skies and the sun, which i didn't see the whole time in the caretera.

Next place --->> El Bolson

Ciao
E

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