Rochelle's South American Adventure 2004! travel blog

We made it to Tacna around 10pm and found a really cheap hostal right away. We used the city for random errands that needed to get done before crossing the border and extending Mikes passport was imperative! We had tried in Arequipa, but the first time we went, Mike had forgotten his tourist Visa and we had to return the next day with his card to find out that we could just get it done in Tacna, therefore wasting an entire day in Arequipá, a city that we had already spent numerous day in! However, when we arrived at the immiagration office in Talca and talked to the minister there, he informed us that we could leave Talca and cross the border the next day, but only if we left in the morning. Now obviously he wasnt going to be at the station when we left, so we asked again if Mike could haver more days on his card, but he assured us that it would be okay! Anyway, the next morning Mike and I get up at 5am to catch a train that crosses the border into Arica, Chile-about and hour through the dessert! When we got there, we bought our train tickets, filled out our new tourist cards and had our bags glanced at by the female officer on guard, about half an hour before the train left and everyone else started arriving...(Mike gave the lady one of Louises Christmas ornaments and I think that sweetened her up a little). However, when Mike tried to get his passport stamped, he was refused numerous times as we struggled to tell them that "it was okay, we talked to the misinter yesterday!" While this is going on, I, for some reason, get really sick and have to run out of the station puking my brains out on the sidewalk-not very cool! I think they felt bad for us, because shortly after they re-checked my bag, becuse I had ran outside with it, we had convinced the man to let us through-though he was not very impressed...fewf!

Right, so the train ride was about an hour long through the dessert in a single car that looked as though it should have been on display at Heritage Park in Calgary-so funny!...and the tracks were so old that we just bounced all over the place while trying to fill out the rest of our paper work-I had a good laugh and enjoyed the ride, but Mike was not nearly as giddy-I kept my distance!

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