Friday, January 24

True stories from the Twilight Zone

Hard to believe it has been two weeks since we we in Miami. Though the
trip has flown by without having bikes, we've already seen so much.
Two days of camping (now with bikes) have produced two epic storms.
One of wind, rain, and downed trees, and last night a massive sand
storm. In both cases we were very fortunate to find a safe and
relatively protected campsite before we we even knew the storms were

I ask myself, was it only just yesterday that I was in the strangest,
most eerie, beautiful and quiet and isolated community that felt like
dream (or maybe a horror film)? Turning off a random, unmarked, and
desolate road let us by a seemingly random cemetery of massive graves
built like castles. Around the curve let us to endless, neatly planted
tress. All painted from the ground to five feet up, it was stunning.
Here was a strange village with fancy street signs marking roads paved
with grass, lightly used. The building a were old and though some were
in decay it was all so clean, pretty, and well manicured. The part so
strange was that we couldn't see a human anywhere, provided that you
don't count the statues and busts found dotting this chilling ghost
The lighting was becoming perfect. Tree lined streets, white trunks
for as far as you could see, all without undergrowth and backlit in
the golden hour. In the distance was the gargantuan tower of a huge
cathedral which we would later find out was also an even larger

We rolled up on a tiny building which was the hospital; outside was a
restfully sitting nurse and a young man. Josh asked about camping and
it was made clear that it was not a matter of police permissions but
instead needed to be approved by 'Walter'. The friendly nurse called
Walter and after he was told of our arrival and attentions he said
camping will be allowed under specific conditions and only in a
specific area of the park. We drove around looking over all of the
areas of the park until a young man on a moto appeared and directed is
into a small entrance to a quarantined area of park. Lined with tall
fences and topped with barbed wire facing inward, we now were in a
triangular shaped cage with a small opening at the tip about the size
of a small car. The locals began to come out. A few at a time they
would drive or bicycle by ogling is and the disappear. Naturally, this
is when we had a blast drumming up wildly imaginative scary stories of
out demise. What we didn't know was that our night would become a
nightmare but not due to a cannibalistic commune or an ancient monster
released only by Walter.

Before bed we made friends with some local kids, swapped motorcycles
for a while, and started making attempt to sleep though the kids were
loudly playing about on their motorbikes too excited seeing new faces
to go to bed themselves. We asked why the trees were white. They
replied, "because they're painted". We asked why again and they said,
"because paint!"

It was only about an hour after we hit the hay, a storm swept in fast
tearing down branches from every tree and bending our tent poles to
our noses. We all ran out of our tents picking up gear once draped
over our bikes and were now blowing about in our little zone. All in
all our gear and bikes held up through the night and in la mañana de
la mañana we rode off into the endless Pampas from what will always
feel like a dream. I know I'll never forget that crazy place but will
also forever question if it really was true.

These moments are why we are here. It is inky here, pursuing adventure
through hardship that one can wake up in the twilight zone (found in
Aaron Castellanos, Santa Fe, AR), a reality unreal and later that very
same day watch a massive and violent sand storm black out the sun in
an instant. So powerful, steams of sand and dust pushed through every
crack of the doors and windows. Though the power was out, the ever
bottles still cracked open and the fire beneath the grill was still
hot. Candle lot steak dinner is a fine way to deal with a several hour
long Haboob.


  1. I've heard that trees are painted white because of termites or temperatures! Depends on the location :)

  2. As you all are aware your adventures have just begun. Stay safe. Great story!