March. Like every month lately, the days are bleeding together like colors in a watercolor painting and it’s difficult for me to remember where I was on any given day. I was in Peru, Bolivia, Chile, AND Argentina in March? Whoa. This is what March looked like through my eyes:
I happily hiked Machu Picchu in the rain.
The experience was awesome and hilarious. It wouldn’t have been nearly as fun if I wasn’t with Becky, the first person I met when I arrived in Cancun seven months ago. We reunited in Costa Rica, spent some time together in Panama, and then just happened to be in Cusco at the same time. It couldn’t have worked out better! When we’re together, we laugh so much that we cry and usually get mixed up in some wild shenanigans or do weird things. This time, we bought matching Inca Kola t-shirts and donned them once the clouds began to separate and we could see Machu Picchu in all its glory. We set up my camera on self-timer mode and took a bunch of ridiculous photos. When the clouds came back, we pretended we were filming an episode of House Hunters with my GoPro as we made our way through the ruins. It guess it doesn’t sound that funny, but it was. Also, Inca Kola really isn’t very good.
I got my first tattoo in Lima!
I love tattoos and always wanted to get one, so I did! It was a bit of an impulse decision, but I think some of my best decisions have been impulse decisions. It’s a paper airplane symbolizing this time in my life I’ve spent jet setting and travel writing. I love it. Now I want another one!
I celebrated St. Patty’s Day in La Paz, Bolivia.
After a harrowing and stressful experience crossing the border into Bolivia, I celebrated St. Patrick’s Day in La Paz. As much fun as it was, it was even better because one of my best friends, Stephanie of Quarter Life Epiphany came to Bolivia to travel with me for a few weeks and was there to celebrate!
We survived biking the World’s Most Dangerous Road.
I’m stunned that I made it out without so much as a scratch after most of the people I met in La Paz had wounds to show of their Death Road mountain biking experience. I was sure I was going to wipe out while trying to maneuver the bike through streams and small waterfalls without really having much control of how fast I was cycling. It was an adrenaline rush, for sure!
We gallivanted around the salt flats in Uyuni.
Salar de Uyuni was one of the highlights of my time in South America. I captured some of my favorite photos on this trip at the salt flats and just absolutely loved this place. It was the last “bucket list” type of place I wanted to see before Patagonia and really was as surreal and beautiful as I thought it would be. I can’t wait to write about this place!
On a whim, Steph and I went to San Pedro de Atacama, Chile.
We heard San Pedro de Atacama was one of the best places in the world for stargazing from some people on our Uyuni tour, so the next day, we went! San Pedro was really touristy and overpriced. It was definitely not my favorite place, but the desert and stargazing were beautiful!
On another whim, Steph came to Argentina with me!
The $160 reciprocity fee that Americans had to pay to enter Argentina has been suspended! Days after this new change was implemented, we were on a bus to Salta. I was always planning to go to Argentina and was even happier to have Steph join me for a few days. We drank Argentine wine; a lot of Argentine wine. That’s about it.
What I’ve been reading on the road
I’ve been reading some very interesting books lately that I’ve been recommending to everyone I meet.
What I Was Doing While You Were Breeding: A Memoir by Kristin Newman
This is one of the most hilarious books I’ve ever read. Kristin’s account of her travels around the world and love disasters along the way remind me of some of my own crazy experiences. She talks about doing “the thing you’re supposed to do in the place you’re supposed to do it”. I love this idea. I think all female travelers can relate to Kristin and her writing is so real and honest. She will make you laugh out loud.
Marching Powder by Rusty Young and Thomas McFadden
You can’t go to Bolivia without reading Marching Powder! It’s almost too crazy to believe the true story of Thomas McFadden getting arrested for cocaine smuggling and Rusty Young paying to live in a Bolivian prison with him. I was blown away by this story and still can’t believe it’s real.
I’m still in Argentina and am going to Bariloche tomorrow. Patagonia. I’m finally making it here after seven months of traveling in Latin America. This trip is almost over and it breaks my heart. I didn’t go on this trip to find myself. I didn’t think I was lost. But I somehow feel more lost than ever now that my time here in Latin America is almost over. I’m not sure what the future holds and where I’m going to try to base myself once I return to the US. I’m traveling solo again after spending most of February and March with some of my most favorite humans. It feels weird and kind of lonely, but I’m okay with that. I only have about one month before I leave South America and am going to do my best to not only live in my sweet memories but seize every moment I have left here.