Wednesday, February 11, 2015

The Adventure Begins
5 February. We, Colin and I, arrived in Santiago just before lunch on the day we left NZ so it looks as if we are to have Tuesday all over again. My bike was supposed to be on the same aircraft as me so the next step was to find out where it was being stored, if indeed it was actually on the aircraft in the first place. After a few false starts we get to the receiving warehouse, find the bike is here then head over to the Customs office to get a temporary import licence. The customs guy feeds my passport number into the computer and “senor, there is a problem, where is the bike you imported in 2013?” He is satisfied that I did re-export it so issues me the certificate and by about 4PM we have the bike assembled and I'm ready to go. Colin, whose bike is already in Chile but in another city, is in the meantime humping his luggage around with the aid of a commandeered handicart. He gets a taxi into the city and I follow in its wake. I think I was asleep before my head hit the pillow.
Next day, Wednesday, we have a leisurely breakfast at a small cafe and head for Valparaiso which is just over 100k away. I promptly get lost which is no help and I am in a delicate state fuel wise. I end up being on a motorway going in the wrong direction with all the gas stations on the frontage road. When I finally take an exit the gas stations suddenly disappear – aw just great. And to boot I am more lost than ever. I eventually find a gas station and fill the tank with about $25 of fuel which makes petrol about the same price as it is in New Zealand. By pure luck I find highway 68 and arrive at hostel Villa Kunterbunt (yea I know) just in time to greet Colin who came by bus. Note to self: buy a map. The hostel and its owners are well respected by the Horizons Unlimited motorcycle fraternity and right now they are helping an American ship his bike back to the States. They also helped Robin Goldsack with the import of his bike through the local port.
One has just finished as the other starts.

Today is Thursday and Colin has gone to the Customs office for what we hope will be a minor matter. With luck we will make San Antonio this afternoon, just a little behind schedule.

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