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Old 02-01-2013, 08:40 AM   #57
porkandcorn OP
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Joined: Jan 2011
Location: Portland, Oregon
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punta del diablo, uruguay - wednesday, january 30

whatever funk i was in a couple of days ago has passed. the exodus from tourist hell was a good move. punta del este would have been beautiful in the off-season. but right now in the heart of summer when argentines are all on holiday for the month of january it was a bit much for me. to many people trying to look wealthier than they really are, and too many wealthy people slumming around with the less fortunate. an unfortunate mix in a beautiful setting.

i'd heard good things about punta del diablo (devil's point), which was about a 3 hour drive up the coast.


the main drag, punta del diablo, uruguay by porkandcorn, on Flickr

i took the coastal road, which was at times packed red dirt. there was a break in the road where a ferry crossing was required. the triumph likes boats.

i stopped off at some fancy resort out in the middle of nowhere for a late breakfast of ceviche octopus, shrimp, some kind of local fish. very tasty. i got a sales pitch, as some important, rich argentine put a lot of money into subdividing the resort, laying down utilities, and so forth. he got about $25 USD back on his investment from me, and i got a fancy, full-color brochure telling me why i should buy a lot there and build a house next to a bunch of other rich people. good ceviche.

the rest of the drive was fantastic today. in and out of farmland, dotty with palm trees. cows and sheep never had it better. the air was cool, as the sea was close all day. no problem being in my full riding suit.

i stopped in several little beach town on the way up north to p.d. diablo. i particularly liked a little town called agues dulces (sweet waters). there is a small road off the path north that veered into the town and ends at the beach. i like roads that end at the beach. i didn't try the sweet water, but i did have a uruguayan "pilsen" beer for a carb kick at lunch. if i had more time to spare, i would have stayed there and hung out in the one bar in town. people were swarming the tiger, eager to talk about her fuel range, velocidade, and how much she cost. i always embellish the speed up (over 200 kmh), and the price down.

today was a reggae day, because of the approach to the small beach towns. the previous day when i was a bit depressed was a steely dan day. steely dan's music reminds me of being an american - it represents some of what is great about my country of birth. pure, free, creative, and a bit weird. it perked me up when i needed a boost.

as i drifted further north into uruguay, almost to the brazilian border, the palm trees increased in frequency.

punta del diablo is a unique place. it was described as hippie, but that doesn't quite do it justice. there is a small dirt street that winds into town from the main highway. it feels like an organized community of shacks. the beach is beautiful. argentines, brazilians are mixed in with uruguayans. everyone here has a smile on there face because this place doesn't allow for anything else. it would be worth a flight from the us just to hang out in this city for a week or two.


fisherman's boat reel, punta del diablo, uruguay by porkandcorn, on Flickr


i live behind this restaurant, punta del diablo, uruguay by porkandcorn, on Flickr


the main drag, punta del diablo, uruguay by porkandcorn, on Flickr

nothing is perfect here. it's all kind of thrown together. and that's what makes it great. the locals are relaxed and friendly. i pulled up next to the prefecture (police station), and walked across to a guy selling a bunch of hippie goods on the street. i was dead set riding into town on having a place right on the beach. i asked him if he knew how to organize that. he yelled at a young girl that was out on the beach, 20 feet away. she ran up and i asked if she had 'habitaciones'. she walked me back through a narrow dirt path to a complex of oddly-strung-together cinder block buildings. my deluxe sweet was waiting for me, like it was built poorly with my stay in mind. "si, esta perfecto," i said. $30 USD/night. now we are talking!


kickin' it on the stoop, punta del diablo, uruguay by porkandcorn, on Flickr


out my front door, punta del diablo, uruguay by porkandcorn, on Flickr


pescador, punta del diablo, uruguay by porkandcorn, on Flickr

it's a total dump, and i love it. i'm 30 steps from a beautiful beach. everyone is walking around in board shorts and flip flops. there is the same puerto rican hip-hop blaring in the air you hear everywhere down here, a band called calle 13. there's pot smoke in the air. empanadas a plentiful and cheap.


the main drag, punta del diablo, uruguay by porkandcorn, on Flickr


hay muchos empanadas, punta del diablo, uruguay by porkandcorn, on Flickr

i tossed off my stinky, sweaty riding gear. i had my board shorts on underneath all day. i locked my room, and went to the ocean. i walked out into the ocean, and dove into the first wave big enough to consume my excessive german mass. i'm done showering with soap for a few days while i stay here. the salt will clean away the filth on my body and in my mind.

a couple of guys running a little beach bar commented on my shemp howard 3 stooges tattoo. here, they are called the 'tres triflados." these two uruguayan brothers and i have something in common - we all grew up obsessed with the stooges. they also told me that in uruguay specifically, cement is not called cement. it's called portland. for portland cement. so i'm kind of famous here for my connection to portland cement. the blonde guy's name is nacho. that's easy to remember. nacho plays the accordian, and quite well.


nacho, e los otros, punta del diablo, uruguay by porkandcorn, on Flickr


me & nacho, punta del diablo, uruguay by porkandcorn, on Flickr


corlos, o cantador, punta del diablo, uruguay by porkandcorn, on Flickr


nacho & carlos, punta del diablo, uruguay by porkandcorn, on Flickr


tomando una caipirinha, punta del diablo, uruguay by porkandcorn, on Flickr

later, i had a desire to cook my own meal. i miss my kitchen. i fact, i've forgotten all about my kitchen, my condo, my building, my life in the states. that's odd. no room in the brain for anything but the present at the moment. anyway, i went to the grocery, and struggled through the odd products until i decided on pasta. garlic, onion, noodles, olive oil, red pepper, mystery sausage, salt, red wine. a simple list for a simple meal. cooked it all up on a shitty camping stove in my shitty kitchen. listened to john coltrane and the sound of the waves crashing was another instrument.


luxury bano, punta del diablo, uruguay by porkandcorn, on Flickr


home sweet shack, punta del diablo, uruguay by porkandcorn, on Flickr

made a lot. took some to the guy out front. took two plates across the street to the 2 cops in the police station. pretty sure my bike will be fine now. made some new friends today.


police station, punta del diablo, uruguay by porkandcorn, on Flickr


punta del diablo, uruguay - thursday, january 31:

woke up at 11am today, after going to bed at 10pm. there is always sleep debt to be made up for, so if i've got nowhere to go, i have no problem sleeping until i wake up. woke up and had a beer, because i forgot to get water last night. it's still hydration.

put on some sunscreen, and went for a jog. apparently, people don't run on the beach here, but i wanted the exercise to burn off the carbs from the italian extravaganza from last night. my shoulders are fairly red, but i'm doing my best to control the cooking of my gringo flesh.

my tasks for the day are done. i ran and worked out - 100 push ups, 100 sit ups, 100 triceps presses on the edge of the bed. went for a 3-4 mile beach run, which feels more like 6 with the sand. i did my laundry again today - have to do it in the morning so it has time to dry on the line while the sun is strong. now i'm off to buy a sand mat for the beach, and some bread to make sandwiches with the mystery sliced meats, salame, and cheese i bought last night at the grocery.


washing clothes, punta del diablo, uruguay by porkandcorn, on Flickr


o perro, punta del diablo, uruguay by porkandcorn, on Flickr


balancing line, punta del diablo, uruguay by porkandcorn, on Flickr

porkandcorn screwed with this post 02-08-2013 at 03:37 PM
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