Greenpoint, October, 2015

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Bumpy Stuff Down South

Speedbumps are ubiquitous in Chile, along with rumble strips. Sometimes you get the "Lento" warning painted on the pavement, sometimes you don't. I never learned what Chileans called their speedbumps but according to this excellent post on El Pedalero blog, one Chilean slang term is lomo de toro, or "back of the bull." That's about how they feel.

The edifice pictured here covers a stream leading to the river below. The road naturally provided all the speedbumps necessary. It leads down to the cabana we stayed in at the tiny village of Alcoguaz in the Elqui Valley of northern Chile. Getting down to the cabana in our little Chevy Spark rental was challenging enough. Getting back up the hill and across this concrete slab, without breaking an axle, almost did us in. Both passengers had to disembark before I could get the torque (and confidence) to do so.

When we'd asked Eric, our Avis guy, back at the La Serena airport, what kind of car the Spark was, he replied: "It's a good car. It has four doors. But it's a city car. If you call me and say, 'Eric we drove in a river....'" We got the message. Or did we?

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