Our seventh month started with a week in Santiago de Chile which left me asking ‘why am I not enjoying cities?’ It’s true that I was mopey and didn’t explore anywhere near as much as I could have, but we still liked Santiago. It has lively atmosphere with good restaurants, great beer and wine and near-perfect summer weather. Alice says she could live there. For me, it’s too big and noisy! Our AirBnB hosts were also really friendly, though I probably enjoyed my two nights in a hostel more. For me, cities are much better when you have a group of people to enjoy them with.
From Santiago, Alice flew south, whilst I took a slightly crazy five-day trip to Europe. A week of separation after sixth months ‘alone together’ is probably healthy. A few people have asked recently how Alice and I are getting on. The answer: pretty well. If you plotted our level of conflict over the trip, it would look something like a bell curve; it’s nice to be on the downwards sloping section! Mostly, we’ve got used to our differences and learned to accept them.
I felt a little bad for Alice, who would probably have appreciated the opportunity to see friends and family even more than I did. She really impressively ploughed on with our plans to camp for 3 nights in Torres del Paine.
I arrived back in Argentina on Friday night and on Saturday we set off on a four-day camping trip in Parque Nacional los Glaciares, near the spectacular mount Fitzroy. It was beautiful and we were blessed by unusually great weather which encouraged us to get up for sunrise on two mornings. No time to rest, the way I enjoy travel.
That said, after another walk with a friendly French couple, we’ve enjoyed a few lazy days in the Patagonian towns of El Calafate, Puerto Natales and Punta Arenas. I’ve been quite easily entertained by bus rides through the huge, stark, slightly repetitive scenery, but I’m looking forward to getting back out into the hills when we reach Ushuaia.
I’m really happy to have found a great job in Geneva, but it does mean that our trip will be coming to a premature end in April. Just one and half months to go, better make the most of it.