So we’re back at home base. Settled in to little old Adelaide, South Australia, as if nothing ever happened. And judging by the state of affairs that we have come back to, nothing has.
Adelaide, consistency is both your blessing and your curse.
‘So what did you like best?’ – an understandable question, but one that I’ve had to repeat the answer of about 38 times now. So to shut you guys up, I thought I’d throw down what I felt were the very best bits of South America through this funky guy’s junky eyes.
Continue reading The Best of South America: Fishy’s Favourites
Ask yourself: What should I see in South America? If you are a normal person who is home to a normal brain, the first words to pass through your lips should be ‘The Amazon’.
We’ve been in South America 10 months. We’ve seen plenty of stuff – enough, it seems, to think it deserved its own URL. But somehow, somehow, we haven’t managed to check out the Amazon.
Continue reading The Amazon for Western Idiots
I like small dark spaces. Sometimes I get told I look like a hot mole so I suppose I’m just playing to script. When I was a kid I used to crawl head first down the end of a sleeping bag and try to do a tumble turn at the end to get back out. Kids are idiots, I was no exception. THIS IS WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU REFUSE TO BUY A NINTENDO MUM.
This did however put me in good stead when we arrived in the Bolivian city of Potosi, a town of about 130,000 that is where it is because there’s a big-arse hill next-door. This big-arse hill is choc full of silver and zinc, which have what economists call ‘value’. People dig the stuff out of the hill in order to make money, and these people are referred to as ‘hill-diggy-sorts’ or ‘miners’.
Continue reading A Miner Detour to Potosi
Overnight buses are a way of life for the South American backpacker. Not only do you spend bugger-all money getting to a place, you also save cash on a night’s accommodation.
That may sound like the most tight-arse thing in the world, but it’s moments like this where you have to remember that the bloke who owns Jim’s Mowing asks for a doggy bag for soup and still buys toilet paper and glad wrap in pallet-sized catering packs to save 2c per metre. I saw it on Today Tonight so you know it’s a watertight fact. He seems like the sort of bloke who you’d run into at a party and immediately regret running into at a party.
Continue reading The Plentiful Pluses of Overnight Buses
Patagonia. It’s a word that firms the groins of any outdoor adventurers that hear it. Endless wilderness that is just waiting to be penetrated.
The hiking hub of Patagonia is the majestic and terrifyingly named Torres del Paine [pie-neh] National Park. With the literal translation being Towers of Paine, we were expecting a far bigger metal band presence, but maybe those types just look different in North Face gear.
I love walking. I walk from my car to the supermarket. I walk from my car to the beach. I sometimes walk from my car to friends’ houses. Can’t get enough. So when we heard about the W Trek, a trek so majestic they named it after a letter of the ALPHABET, I was one keen bean.
Continue reading The Shit Hiker’s Guide To The W Trek
Sicknesses are like dreams, in that everyone wants to tell you about theirs, but you as the listener feel like you’re getting your ears slowly and boringly punched. The ins-and-outs of a body breaking down are interesting in the same way that desert succulents or proper lathe technique are. Not really.
Let me tell you about mine.
I recently got laid up for a week or so with a bacterial infection, bed-bound and sweating bullets. We were at the top of Argentina at the time, trying to move South, but little Fishy’s rig was saying ‘woah there sailor’.
Continue reading Sickness on the Road: A How-To Guide
I was super pumped to get to Ecuador. Jumping out of my little Fishy skin. There was something about the joint that just spoke to me. I’d obviously never been there, and in reality, I knew bugger all about it. It just seemed cool, you know?
It straddles the equator. That’s cool. It has some super fine beaches. Mint. It’s cheap, but still uses the American dollar, so there’s none of this ‘Oh, 2 000 000 Souvlakian chestnuts for this bust of Michael Bolton yep that sounds fine’ business. Rad as heck. It just seemed like a sound choice in ideal destination.
Continue reading Ecuador: The Good, The Bad, The Even Worse
Siz and I have spent the last few weeks volunteering in exchange for a free stay in the little town of Puerto Cayo, Ecuador, which is home to a sliver of beach that is piled high with aging American pensioners who thought that spending $13,000 on a beachfront property was worth leaving behind everything you know. And all power to them.
Continue reading We Need To Talk About Mike
I don’t know if you picked it up from our constant harping about it friends, but we totally friggin’ nailed the Inka Trail earlier this trip. Hiked the LIVING SHIT out of it. The Inka Trail was a bit of roadside trash and we were a Clean Up Australia crew, in that It was disposed of. It’s hard not to be cocky when you’re that good at hiking. SURE, it may seem to some like you’re just putting one foot in front of the other, but to us seasoned pros, statements like that smack of someone telling a brain surgeon that ‘you just cut open the noggin and have a dick around’.
Continue reading The Shit Hiker’s Guide to Maragua
So we’re currently most of the way through a 5 week stay in Sucre, Bolivia, doing our level headed best to nut out Español. We’ve been wandering through South America for over two and a half months now, and my lack of Spanish is giving me a firm rogering. English speakers are, by and large, lazy fuckers. And we are because we can be. Between Europeans, North Americans, Kiwis and Aussies, the backpacker set is almost entirely made up of fluent English speakers. If you don’t have to bother, why would you?
Continue reading Not Talking The Talk