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ALERT...Kilometers of Kindness!

Tuesday, Jan. 23

There are not enough words to describe yesterday so I will try to lay it out as best I can. We woke up to an incredibly sunny morning on top of a bluff that overlooked the world. Our plans were to head over to the border into Argentina and figure it out from there.



During our morning workout the neighbors stopped by to say goodbye and off they went. I made a healthy bowl of oatmeal, bananas, apples, nuts, milk and a pinch of vanilla whey powder for flavor. We worked on a little Spanish and hit the road at 11:00 am.


Driving along the lake on a bumpy dirt road I turned on 100 greatest Spanish hits. We must have been cruising along for about an hour and a half when we came around a corner and started going downhill when I noticed the car slowing down.  I thought, "That's weird, we should be speeding up." But then I realized we had lost all power and the engine was no longer running. At that moment you would imagine I would be thinking, "NO BUENO" in my head. You would be wrong. Sarah was unaware of what was going on because of the great music blaring from the speaker. I was thinking, "How am I going to break the news to my wife!"



We came to a complete stop in the middle of a dirt road. We found ourselves perched atop a mountain with a 1000 foot, shear drop on my side of the van and a 100 foot vertical cliff wall on Sarah's side. I tried starting the car repeatedly but "No Bueno". The closest town behind us was two hours and the closest town before us was fifty minutes by car. There was no cell service, no houses to walk to but the scenery was amazing!


I am thinking we need to push the car off the curve of the road but we can't do it by ourselves. One of us had to be the driver because we were dealing with a thousand foot cliff. If we were both pushing, the car could get away from us and that would be "NO BUENO". So we decided to wait for another car to come by and that took about fifteen minutes.



The first driver was a real doozy and I won't go into the details but he was no help. The second car that pulled up was a couple from Germany. They told us about a similar problem they had while in Namibia so they were quite sympathetic to our predicament. Sarah got in the van and the three of us pushed. We had to push about a city block to where there was a turnout but we really struggled because it was a slight incline.


At this point I suggested that we wait for more help. Within a few minutes another car pulled up and a young couple offered assistance. He was from France and his girlfriend was from Columbia. His English was excellent so that was very helpful. Sarah was now out of the car and the German woman took the wheel. As we were all pushing she was turning the wheel in the wrong direction making it a bigger problem and harder to push. At one point she drove it onto the soft shoulder and the husband was getting upset. With no time for marriage counseling I took charge and we got the car safely to the pullout on the side of the road.


Now what? Well the young guy from France (Marco) was willing to give us a ride to Chile Chico but there was little room in their van. Right then a couple from Britain pulled up in a 4x4 and they offered to drive us. Nigel and Caroline were gracious hosts to wait as we packed as much stuff in our backpacks because we now had to leave our home behind. Ten minutes down the road I realized I had left my wallet behind but they graciously turned around and returned to pick up my wallet. The kindness at kilo marker 62,900 was magical and we hoped it would see us through.




After an hour on the road we arrived in Chile Chico. They dropped us off in front of a Cafe at 3:00 pm and we said our goodbyes. Now for a plan. I called Danny at Condor Camper's to let him know of our predicament and Sarah started looking for accomodations. To my surprise, Danny asked me what my plan was. I could see Sarah's radiator boiling but no steam escaped as she overheard the conversation. Somehow I managed to keep it on the rails and politely told him that my initial plan was to call him, as instructed.


Danny was a little preturbed that we left the van on the side of the road but we felt we had no choice. He began to work with me on a plan and we ended up contacting a local mechanic who sent out a tow truck. In the meantime Sarah booked a cabana for two nights and we jumped in the tow truck around 5:30 pm for our ride back to the van.



Upon arrival we had to straighten out the van in order for the truck to get in position. The driver was my size and we were definitely underpowered for the job. At that point Sarah reluctantly jumped behind the wheel. Terrified of rolling off of the cliff, I reassured her that she had a good twelve inches before her living will would go into effect! It was definitely a sketchy moment as we pushed and rocked and steered the van into position. When all was said and done, Sarah had a terrifying moment but she pulled it together. It is always an adventure with me. What a woman I married!



The ride in the tow truck was an AB workout on steroids. The roads are strewn with gnarly washboards and potholes, a challenge to most hearty bladder longing for a baño stop. We got back to the mechanics garage around 9:00 pm.


The owner of the garage was kind enough to drive us from the garage to the cabaña we had reserved for two nights. It was nice to have a roof over our heads for the next two nights. Now we wait to see what the problem is and how long it will take to fix it. We have been overwhelmed with kindness from people from all over the world. We will keep you posted as our journey moves forward.



Keep on rolling,

Scott and Sarah

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3 Comments


Wow! That is alot to take in for a day! We will continue to pray for your safety and what a blessing of all the people that came through and helped

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Sounds like a crazy day! Glad you're ok! Love you!🥰

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Well that's part of the trip you won't forget any time soon. Glad you're both doing well and working on those tempertandem skills. Seriously, we're glad you're ok and hopefully safe while the van is being repaired! Enjoy the ride or rest whichever comes first. Love ya!

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