South America 

South America

After an emotional farewell to our campervan that had been our home for 5 weeks we finally flew out of Auckland after clocking up a whacking 4494km on the road. A night in a decent hotel was very welcome and the pool, sauna, room service and cable TV all got good use.
The flight out of Auckland to Santiago, Chile was a 12 hour flight from hell in the "flying creche". Screaming brats constantly woke everyone up and the only redeeming feature was movies on demand (shame there wasnt enough Chilean Cabernet Sauvignon on demand to go with it!).
Spent a few days in Chile walking around in a jetlagged haze, with Mel trying to remember her Spanish and me trying learn important things like "with milk" and "no mayonnaise". Met a few Ozzies and Kiwis and went out with a drink with them and swapped the usual traveller stories of bargains, nightmares, dangers, highlights, etc...
After 3 days in Chile we flew north to La Paz, Bolivia which rests at 3600m above sea level (when we did our skydiving we were required to use oxygen masks above that altitude!). Going to Bolivia so soon was probably a mistakle as for the first few days we had to get over Altitude Sickness as well as Jet Lag, not fun, we slept more than anything else. After 3 days in La Paz we are now acclimatized and can walk down the road without running out of breath and needing to lie down. My Spanish is coming on a bit and a Mel is now babbling like a native.
Today we are off to Salar De Uyuni which is the Salt Desert in the South of Bolivia. A 3 hour bus followed by a 7 hour train journey awaits, joy!. Have started reading Lord of the Rings so that should soak up some of the time. I??m also looking forward to taking some pictures as so far we have only seen 2 South American cities which aren??t exactly pretty or photogenic. Back on Wednesday...

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