View Single Post
Old 01-16-2013, 09:22 PM   #33
porkandcorn OP
FortesFortunaAdiuvat
 
porkandcorn's Avatar
 
Joined: Jan 2011
Location: Portland, Oregon
Oddometer: 296
valparaiso, chile and the reunion with my triumph tiger 800xc

i learned this dicho (saying) today: "ayer, lo passe chancho," which means "yesterday, i had a piggy day." this is a saying specific to chile, in spanish. chileans also say to their boyfriends/girlfriends, "hola chanchito," meaning "hello piggy." having a piggy day means that you are with your friends or doing fun stuff, and making memories. i have been having a piggy week and a half.


graffiti in cerro carcel, valparaiso, chile by porkandcorn, on Flickr


Untitled by porkandcorn, on Flickr


Untitled by porkandcorn, on Flickr


Untitled by porkandcorn, on Flickr

valparaiso after 3 days of inhabitance is growing on me and feels familiar. i'm already thinking and dreaming in spanish. we've moved from the hostal verde limon to the hostal caracol. hostal caracol was close by, and have a gated back yard where we can put our bikes (which we collected today! - more about that soon.)


hostel casa verde limon, cerro carcel, valparaiso, chile by porkandcorn, on Flickr

wednesday, we took a walking tour with a guy named francisco, a porteņo (person from valparaiso - a port person) who gives walking tours of valpo for tips. it was a 3 hour tour rich with history, politics, graffiti, humor and this is also where i learned about piggy days.


wally with "tours for tips", valparaiso, chile by porkandcorn, on Flickr

there was a golden age in valparaiso that was set off by the san francisco gold rush, strangely enough. the demand of wheat from chile to fuel the california gold rush built a world class city. it's rise to opulence was fast, with certain areas of downtown claiming status as some of the wealthiest areas on the continent at the time. the downfall was similarly to the point, brought about by the construction of the panama canal, causing activity at the valpo port to dry up and leading to a generalized depression that has lasted until today. valpo is now the most poverty stricken city in chile, but i don't seem to mind.


Untitled by porkandcorn, on Flickr


old town, valparaiso, chile by porkandcorn, on Flickr


Untitled by porkandcorn, on Flickr

so, today was a BIG DAY. after a year of planning this trip, months of spending too much money on motorcycle stuff, and a month of waiting for my bike to sail to valpo, today i was reunited with my bike. the gringo parade met up at a really amazing seafood restaurant, los porteņos II, very close to the aduanas (customs) building downtown. all of us where there, including "coach" who dragged my bike from salem, oregon to put my bike on the container for me in los angeles, california.


marisqueria los porteņos II, plaza sotomayor, valparaiso, chile by porkandcorn, on Flickr


marisqueria los porteņos II, plaza sotomayor, valparaiso, chile by porkandcorn, on Flickr

after lunch (i had the paella, which had about 5 pounds of chicken, pork, seafood, and curried rice), we all went to the SAMM container handling facility to crack open our officially sealed container. (the seal was an aluminum band on the lock that could have been broken by a cat or a ferret. but it was in tact and hence we knew our bikes were un-tampered-with.


SAAM container port, valparaiso, chile by porkandcorn, on Flickr


SAAM container port, valparaiso, chile by porkandcorn, on Flickr


SAAM container port, valparaiso, chile by porkandcorn, on Flickr


SAAM container port, valparaiso, chile by porkandcorn, on Flickr


gringos at SAAM container port, valparaiso, chile by porkandcorn, on Flickr


our container, SAAM container port, valparaiso, chile by porkandcorn, on Flickr

jorge, our chilean customs 'fixer' was amazing and calmly worked through the mountain of paperwork. eventually, after we cracked the container, pulled all our bikes (and an SUV) out of the container, the customs agent came and looked over the bikes. there really was not search, but he checked the VIN numbers and we had a few laughs about my rubber duck. the customs agent has a BMW 1200GS, so you could say he was sympathetic to our cause. chancho!!


jorge, customs fixer extraordinaire, SAAM container port, valparaiso, chile by porkandcorn, on Flickr


SAAM container port, valparaiso, chile by porkandcorn, on Flickr


reunion with triumph tiger 800xc, SAAM container port, valparaiso, chile by porkandcorn, on Flickr

finally, after some more stamps and papers, we rode the F out of there and bear and i went up to our new hostel on a steeper hill than before. (valpo is very much like san francisco, without the hippies.) we rode up a back alley and into a gated backyard of the hostel. i pull my panniers off to make the bike lighter, as we had to hop a descent sized curb and the turning radius to get in the gate was crapola. managed to get both bikes in without a spill.


hostal caracol, valparaiso, chile by porkandcorn, on Flickr

i admired how well i packed the bike, but she's definately porky. i'll be sending back some stuff in the mail when i get to brazil. now, after going down the hill to get dinner (always a 3000 calorie burning endeavor), i'm again staying up way to late for your benefit, processing photos, uploading to flickr, updating 3 blogs.


hostal caracol, valparaiso, chile by porkandcorn, on Flickr
porkandcorn is offline   Reply With Quote