Up the creek without a paddle

Trip Start Oct 05, 2005
Trip End Apr 06, 2006

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Where I stayed
periko's hostel

Flag of Argentina  ,
Friday, December 9, 2005

Took my return flight to Puerto Montt, waving at the Navimaggers below, and spent a very disturbed night in an awful "hotel" called Casa Gladys. When I arrived it was raining (as usual) and the streets were full of shady characters. Casa Gladys was no exception. The kitchen had been turned into some kind of temporary sweat factory, where Gladys and some woman with pink hair and tattooed make-up were sat on sewing machines running up net skirts, and I presume due to this, she had mucked up my booking for a single room and put me instead in a triple. On the way up we passed a sleazy-looking man wearing only a small towel, and he promptly knocked on my door and asked if I would mind sharing my room with an American "chico". I told him where to get off, and tried to lock the door. To no avail. So after running down the street to a restaurant for dinner and running back with my hood over my face, I holed myself up in my room and pushed all my worldly possessions against the door. Had a horrible night's sleep, where I could hear the group of men next door shouting and drinking, and smell their rancid cigarette smoke leaking through the wooden walls. I also have a vague recollection of doors slamming all night, but that could have been in my head. Wierdly, by morning, it was as if none of the night before had happened, and I went down to the now-functioning-as-a-kitchen kitchen, where Gladys was sat nursing a cup of tea, had breakfast then made a sharp exit to catch my bus to Bariloche.

The bus took eight hours and wound its way around the lakes and mountains from Chile to Argentina. I sat next to this woman who spent the entire journey half out of her seat staring at either (a) me, (b) the scenery, which, admittedly, was pretty nice, and/or the tiny TV at the front of the bus that was playing non-stop 80s MTV videos, culminating in a Kylie/Roxette/Bon Jovi medley. As we neared Bariloche we hit a blizzard.

So I check into Periko's Hostel in Bariloche, and await the arrival of the Swiss guy, as planned. He emails me to tell me that he is off the boat, not going to stay in Puerto Montt, as planned (wise), but instead going to catch an earlier bus to Bariloche with his new-found friends from the Navimag. I was happy he was coming a day early. Anyway, he doesn't arrive at Periko's that night. Next day he emails to say he went with new-found friends to a hostel in the mountains instead, and did I want to join him. Short answer was yes, but then I was annoyed he hadn't come to meet me, and doubted whether or not I should be chasing a boy, especially halfway up a mountain.

So, anyway, I went. And for the first night I was glad I did, as it was beautiful, with fantastic views over the lakes and mountains, and the group of Navimaggers, which consisted of two dutch girls and a Welsh man, invited me to eat with them, and we all had a very nice time indeed. However, troubles began to unfold once the Welsh man left... it's a long and confusing story so I won't bore you with the details now but suffice it to say I felt like I was back in primary school and wished I hadn't gone at all. I spent the whole time trekking round the mountains with a girl called Christine, (which was predominantly good, apart from the time I lost her, panicked, then had to use the pictures on my digital camera to navigate my way back, which took two hours).

We all left on the same morning in the jeep, Swiss guy and dutch girls for their menage-a-trois three-day trek, me for the airport to catch my flight to BA. I still don't know what the hell happened! Anyway, I'm out of it now, and you live and learn. Or do you when it comes to boys?
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