I'm gonna try and bust this one out so I can go sleep before we get picked up on the early am for the trip of Bolivian adventure.
So we got her and I went "ummmmmmmmmm" at Chris and he looked nervously around (I think because he thought I would freak out at the surroundings). This is why: this is our street:
and trust me, this is the upscale part of town.
However, the insides of all of these places, while rustic, are very charming, surprisingly well appointed, and at times, downright luxurious. I was really just doing this for effect, I had seen the pictures of the hotel inside and knew it would be fine, and it's actually pretty nice. The whole town is made of adobe, which is funny, 'cuz Chris was trying to get away from Adobe for a few weeks (tee hee). Anyway, they handed us the world's largest (again, not confirmed by Guinness) key chain:
(remember that that is my gigantic, bigger than my husband's hand, man hand in the picture)
and we went on our way. We headed out to lunch in a rustic little tavern with a dragon head sticking out of the wall:
(The Germans who were actually sitting under this thought this was a riot as I stood on their bench to get this shot.)
As I said yesterday, we went to see the Valley of the Moon. It was stunning. First we went on a walk down a dune:
into a slot canyon:
Where the rock is actually MADE of salt and is really thinly covered with dirt. I know, I wiped off some dirt, saw crystal and licked it. NaCl all the way. Chris has a picture. Here's some of the highlights:
Then we went to climb a dune and look out over the alien landscape:
And then to the 3 Marias and a small salt mine:
And then to watch the sunset, where because Chris can bring rain to even the driest desert in the world(tm), we got treated to some rainbows:
And some awesome skies:
Today we got up for a 9 am pickup, which is actually quite late, and went to the salt flats and lake of Chaxa, and to a couple of lagoons and small villiages. At the salt flats we were delighted to see some flamingos up close:
beautiful still water for nice reflections:
and some big sky:
The lagoons were lovely:
and we were treated to a family of vicunia (also a camel and related to the guanaco of Argentina):
Later, in one of the villiages, we saw farm llama roaming the streets:
If we can just fins dome Alpaca, we will have seen all of the camels of South America!
When we came home, we went out looking for dinner. We were talking to a girl and suddenly I turned and saw this coming out of the door of the restaurant, which sold me on the place:
Then he disappeared into the night to defend the good people of the Atacama from the forces of evil.
And that was that. Ok, gotta go sleep now. One more week to go and then we are en rout home. Hope the whole Bolivian Adventure is as awesome as the rest of the trip has been!