Life goes on in Coyahaique. You just can’t enter or leave.
We moved out of the bus, and left it near the gas station. We needed more space and also needed a bathroom and shower.
We’ve rented a cabin where we can cook and shower and other normal things. We go and check on the bus and make sure there is no gas line about 3-4 times a day. Bode and I sleep here, Jason goes and sleeps in the bus…just in case.
Bode and I bring him coffee if he isn’t back by 9:30, I also bring my uke or a book in case I have to sit in the bus for a few hours. But for days, there has been no line and we just lug all the stuff back and forth. Everyday, someone says ‘maybe today’. There is one other person sleeping and staying in their car—an Argentinean guy who seems to sit outside his truck and drink mate all day and night.
The store shelves continue to empty and get more and more bare. There are no fresh fruits or vegetables, but still some beef and yogurt. No one is panicking, but today looks like the last day of bread. Still, it seems a lot more civil than a Safeway in the U.S. the day before Christmas.
We watch and try to translate the fast-paced talking on the 24 hour news channels. But there is a big festival in Vina del Mar, and it’s back to school time. These things seem far more important than the fact that this region is blocked off from the rest of Chile and the entire region is shut down. The ‘live morning news’ shows broadcast out of Santiago just seem to show smiling hosts gyrating to techno music and talking about the latest celebrity gossip. Sound familiar? One of the big complaints here in the Aysen region is that the rest of Chile doesn’t recognize their problems. Based on the way the news is treating this, I can see their point.
I know how lucky we are to be in this town. Everyone we meet has been very nice, and they make calls to see if they can find us the little bit of gas we need to make it to Argentina. We are in touch with some other overlanders who are north of us who might be able to help us with a special delivery… but they are starting to feel the effects all the way up to El Bolson, Argentina now.
We did get a bit of scary information last night. We were told that there is only enough diesel to run the generators for the city’s electricity for another few days. So, if you don’t hear from us, that’s why.