Early start

Trip Start Feb 20, 2006
Trip End Jun 2006

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Flag of Chile  ,
Sunday, April 16, 2006

its been a while since my last entry and i`ve done quite a lot. Had to get up at 4am this morning to go on a bit of a trek to go and see some geysers (for those of you who donīt know what geysers are, they are basically holes in the ground that has very hot water splurting out of them, the water is heated by lava flowing under the surface, which is why you have to be very careful and not fall in as i learnt, or u can get a nasty burn) so i`m pretty tired. We`re just about to head out now and do a tour of a place called moon valley, which is supposed to be awesome, so looking forward to that.
Anyway since last entry i have climbed a volcano which was a hell of a trek and actually pretty dangerous not to mention the sulphur fumes which we were all breathing in at the top, plus we didnt even get to see any lava, so i won`t be climbing any more volcanoes anytime soon. Next day i did a skydive, yeh i no how mad am i, which was absolutely bloody amazing, think prob the best thing i`ve done so far if not ever. Was slightly comical cos the plane wouldnt start so they had to bring one of the pick up trucks over and get the jump leads out and jump start this already dodgy looking plane. As i was going first i didnt really know what to think, other than maybe i`ve picked the wrong day to go skydiving. So i jumped out of a plane at 9,000 feet which is pretty damn high when you`re looking down from an aeroplane trusting your life in the hands of a guy called pete who when i asked how long from leaving the plane to touching down on the ground only replied "well if the parachute opens about 5 minutes, if not a little sooner" so after filling me full of confidence he helped kick me out of the plane and it was the best thing ever, felt even better when i got to the bottom and was able to change my underwear, but got it all on video.
Arrived at santiago few days later which was good fun, met up with Naomi, a friend from back home and another girl who was out staying with her, went for dinner which was pretty good. Also got the chance to check out a few interesting coffee shops with a few of the other guys on tour. They call it "cafe a los piernas" which means coffee with legs, which as it sounds is really just scantily clad girls serving coffee, best coffee i`ve had in months though. Did a bit of sightseeing, had a few beers and a hotdog or 2 which i think is the unofficial national dish of Chile bcos everyone seems to eat them.
Anyway did a whole load of other stuff but will be easier to explain when i get a chance to stick the photos on. 16 people left the truck in santiago and 16 new ones got on, mostly english, but no ones perfect i guess. New group seem nice enough but it just seems like a lot of effort trying to do the whole getting to know people all over again and saying goodbye again but i guess thats just part of the experience. Starting to see some really messed up stuff now and i know its only going to get worse, we pulled over at the side of the road to have lunch yesterday at this old unused petrol station that has a house next to it (reminded me a lot of that bar with all the trucks in it at the end of from dusk till dawn, no vampires though) and there was this very shabby effort for a zoo, and im kind of sorry i went over to see it cos the animals were the saddest most neglected things i`ve ever seen, birds with feathers missing to the point where their wings were made of bone and nothing else, with bits missing from their necks so it looked as though their heads were literally about to fall off and little capuchin monkeys that if they could talk would make anyone cry, stuck in a cage covered in s**t everywhere, with no food and no water, reaching its hands through the cage begging for food. And a lot of sick people, glass eyes, no limbs, homeless kids, a lot of shanty towns and really really horrible toilets, and i havent even got to Bolivia yet. Anyway on the plus side there has been some spectacular scenery and lovely sunsets and nights on the beach just listening to huge waves come crashing in. Also chased a lot of seagulls one night, but thats another story. Anyway have to go, beer is calling. Speak soon, hope every1 is well
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