It has recently come to our attention that the entire grand plan of this trip was completely deranged when we set off. Al and I intended to ride down to Tierra del Fuego and then back up to Seattle in nine months. Yeah right, I don’t even want to ride back through California let alone the entire Western Hemisphere. Plus, at our rate, we won’t be getting to the Argentina until their spring; my budget doesn’t account for much beyond that.
So, that gives me a lot of options once I get down there (assuming I don’t get distracted along the way). I don’t have many life barriers in my current state, here are a couple ideas I am tossing around. I could get a job in Buenos Aires as a windsurfing instructor through my friend from the Gorge, Martin. I could sell the bike in Brazil and island hop the Caribbean back to Florida. I could move to Australia to work five months a year in the mining industry starting at $85,000/year. Or I could go home, save another load of cash, and come back La Ventana when the wind turns on in October (that won’t happen, but I can easily imagine bagging the Argentina thing altogether).
Obviously, I have some thinking to do over the next eight months. The problem is, every time I like the sound of something, I meet the next coolest guy in the world who expands my parameters even further. Take Dan, for instance, the 55 year-old American kiter who resides here in La Ventana with his children while running a board shop and renting a room to us. Dan spent his early years working in the Australian oil industry and then buying properties all around the world while he traveled. Eventually he came across La Ventana and decided to settle down. Dan bought an abandoned shrimp warehouse and now he operates a kite shack/restaurant/hostel out of it.
Or there is Chaz. Let me make it clear that I do not want to be Chaz when I grow up, but he is a lot of fun to hang out with here in La Ventana. I don’t know where Chaz got his money, but he obviously has a good sum and he knows how to have a good time. The favorite Chaz quote from last night (completely out of the blue): “I’m sorry if you guys don’t like drugs… but I do a lot of them.”
Charlie met Chaz in at a restaurant across the street yesterday and the mid-forties kiter turned out to be the most hospitable person we’ve met on this trip. After hanging out with us and imparting a lot of random knowledge, Chaz said we should come over to his lot in the evening for margaritas and Gran Turismo 5 on a 100” HD projection screen… well I guess if you twist my arm.
We showed up to find that Chaz lives in a well-outfitted RV toy hauler on a buddy’s property. Over the winter he set up a professional margarita bar and a theater quality entertainment system. Surrounding the entire place were giant Saguaro cactuses illuminated by lights woven into the sand often fifty yards off into the darkness. Overhead the stars were non-polluted bright as could be and the moon a yellow tint.
We played GT5 using steel tables with the pedals, shifter, and resistant steering wheel mounted on them. Not a bad way to play the most realistic driving game ever built. The whole time Chaz simply played music, told off-the-wall stories, and showed us kiteboarding clips. Turns out he’s also an avid adventure rider and has journeyed all over South America on different bikes. For a guy who is seems a little fried with no intentions of ever going back, Chaz was an awesome host for a group of young motorcyclists exploring the world.
This morning we are all enjoying our four-day vacation here in La Ventana… we really needed it. I’m typing away here in bed waiting for the afternoon wind to show up. Apparently I can expect weak Easterlies with sporadic powerful gusts. I talked to a French-Quebecer girl named Lucy at a local surf shack down the beach and I get access to all of their sails and boards all day for $40. Beautiful. Now wait to see some whitecaps and I can take this vacation another step in the right direction.