Saturday, 7 December 2013


The Chilean government like to erect vast hoardings in many colours claiming responsibility for the upkeep and repair of the potholes that we're bouncing around in. The cost/spend will be quoted. It will involve a string of numbers that confuses my simplistic eye. Anything over seven digits is big, as in millions, beyond that, and incomprehension sets in.

I've been brain exercising, as I climb what I hope will be the last long climb to the Paso. All say that it's downhill thereafter. Using a known conversion ratio, to equate a Chilian peso to a boliviano, I've reached an acceptable figure that hasn't used too many rounds up or down sums. We check the answer with the next WiFi connection and I'm rather pleased, I'm only out by 8%. An error far outwith acceptable statistical analysis, but it's only an error of 0.7 pence sterling. A factor that will easily be swallowed up by the next 'devil of usury'.

We've checked the exchange rates and I know that it's time to learn a new sum, bases ten and twelve are primary school stuff, but now there's a choice, either learn to divide by the Sterling 859.8025, or the Dollar 500. I like the simple, but two hundred bucks to go to the toilet? S**t, I knew it would be a bit more expensive, but....Right conversion. Wrong $.

'They' were wrong about the downhill as well. 'They', are of course vehicle drivers who don't note the dispiriting, heart thumping reascents. Still it affords time for some further brain training.