I finally arrived in Vina del Mar, Chile this morning after almost twenty hours of total travel time! Apart from trying to kick some terrible sinus congestion by being hopped up on Sudafed and Earl Grey tea throughout the flights, our travels went pretty well.
In all honesty, when I first arrived in Vina del Mar I was a bit culture shocked, although I’d like to blame some of that feeling on sleep deprivation, jet lag, a little homesickness, etc. Once I settled in my room and activated my world traveler call plan (not nearly as prestigious as it sounds), Vina del Mar turned into a pleasant place with an interesting architectural combination of older historic-looking buildings and numerous high-rise apartment complexes.
We eventually linked up with Chris Foster and went on a “shake-out” 70 minute ride north along the Chilean coast which was spectacular. Again, due to the sleep deprivation, jet lag, etc., the state of delirium in which we found ourselves made the ride that much more interesting… My coach Ian described the ride as “the 7th scariest ride of his life”. It also probably didn’t help that we started our ride at noon on a Friday…
What’s great is that we have a solid crew of U.S. athletes down here to represent good ole red, white and blue amid all the South American competition!
Tomorrow morning we have a swim group going to test out the 60 degree ocean waters! I predict the water will be wet...