Cycling Chile/Argentina '04 | Punta Arenas Index Day 3 Day 5
      Day 4: Ruta 9 Intersection to Rio Gallegoes -> Villa Tehuelches 47KM Muy Tranquilo

Woo Wo Wooooo     Woo Wo Wooooo     Woo Wo Wooooo

Not even 6 o'clock in the morning and one rooster decided it was time to start the day. Precisely 20 seconds between each call (I have a recorder to prove it), the little bugger crooned out to the community. At 6:30AM, not hearing any movements from us, he went for a second round but this time even louder while maintaining his signature 20-second rhythm.

Very cold, I could see my breath. We had cereal and banana for breakfast. The cafeteria was not open. On our way out, Brian offered a small folding flower, the only gift we brought with us, to Romero for his daughter. Then, he invited us to his house for coffee and bread. We found out he was a national Tae Kwon Do champion and his biggest dream is to take his wife and daughter to Disney World.

11:00AM - We hit the road. Once the sun was out, it got a lot warmer. Not far down the road, we met two Dutch cyclists going the other direction finishing their quest from Buenos Aires to Ushuaia. They looked cheerful, but their bikes, beaten-up. We got some good tips from them including a phone number for ferry information across Lago O'Higgins.

Other than tall grass and undulating hills in the distance, there was not much scenery. But with little traffic, white wispy clouds, and bright blue sky, we were happy. We even spotted several Nandu, a kind of ostrich looking bird, and several vultures. There are a lot of road side shrines - one of the features common to almost every road we cycled in Chile and Argentina.

A bit after 3PM, we made it to the small establishment of Villa Tehuelches. The next hostel is 38 more kilometers down the road. After a nice tea and chocolate, we decided to call it a day and plan on an early start next morning. The owner of the only cafeteria in town offered us a grassy spot in her front yard close to the road but behind bushes. She told Brian it would be "muy tranquilo" – very quiet here at night.

We enjoyed a nice dinner with rice, corn, celery, soup mix, and protein powder. On the other side of the highway, there were horses galloping around the fields in the foreground of a brilliant sunset.

When the night fell, instead of “muy tranquilo”, we were shaken by every truck flying down the highway in addition to every dog in the village barking at the top of their lungs as if getting ready for Iditarod. We must have taken over the territory of one of the three cats that had been making regular visits to a nearby trash bin. It wasted no time making that clear to us.