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At the End of a Long Drive

Shreesh and Neena Taskar

We didn't make the decision, the decision made us. On October 20th, 2007, we left our comfortable city of San Francisco to follow a simple algorithm - go North till the road ends then turn around and then go as far South. In between those two points was the stage, the timeline, the space, where we made things happen and things happened to us.

The past is fleeting and the stories, the sights and the feelings are perishable. One sees what one wants to see, and perhaps we are not capable of more. We saw that people are kind and helpful even if they were not materially rich. Some we could understand even though we didn't speak the same language, the motivations of others were incomprehensible even though we did. In the end fragments remain - the smell of roasting chocolate, a flock of snow Ptarmigians on snow, the creaking of the rainforest, the rough feathers of penguins, and the intoxication of Curanto.

So these are our stories. Every time you visit the site you will see a random post below. Each starts with Lo que pasa es que...


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FailBlog – Being tall – First reaction. (Map this!)

We had been reading FailBlog, a humorous website that features various things that unintentionally go wrong. Reading these kinds of websites give us that superior feeling that allows us to laugh at other people’s misfortunes while complacently shaking our heads at how silly people can be. Until that is, something of a similar nature happens to us.

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Loaded FJ

On FailBlog, incidents resulting from the underestimating the height of a vehicle seem to be unusually common. Especially the one where the whole roof of a truck came off, presumably due to misjudging the clearance of a bridge. “How can people do this?” I wondered. It does seem that most of these height incidents happen with UHauls which were probably rented. I was shaking my head in disbelief at the carnage until….

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Lighthouse, Chiloé

In Chiloé, our friend Vinay joined us. When we have another person traveling with us, we throw our jerry cans on the roof, thus raising the height of the car from approx 6’8″ to over 7′. We had just pulled into a fabulous hotel with ocean front rooms in the small town of Ancud and were off to see the local sights. The driveway passed underneath a nice little carport. Just as I drove under it, THWACK! the sound startled the living daylights out of me. What had happened? The jerry cans had taken a part of the portico right off!

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Hotel damage

And what was Shreesh’s first comment after finding out what happened?

“Oh no! We will be on FailBlog!”

(His second comment was “Hey! The jerry cans are OK!” while the poor, gracious hotel manager was looking at the damage to the carport and telling us not to worry, he could fix it).