“When someone tells me it is going to be cold, I ask, ‘How cold?’ you dumb-ass,” said my guide.

Tatio Geysers at sunrise

Tatio Geysers at sunrise

Ok, he did not call me a dumb-ass out loud, but I am sure he was thinking it since I was thinking it about myself at that moment.

People mentioned that the day trips from San Pedro de Atacama, Chile, would be cold. It never occurred to me to ask for more specifics because it never, ever occurred to me that they could mean -10 C.

That is not a typo.

MINUS TEN DEGREES CELSIUS (or -14 F).

That is not “cold.” That is freezing. Actually, that is more than freezing.

And that was the temperature when we arrived at the Geiser del Tatio this morning before sunrise.

Not sure where things got lost in translation, or transmission between two different travel agencies and me, but lost they were and frozen I was.

Sun's up but I'm still freezing

Sun’s up but I’m still freezing

The geysers were kind of cool. Here’s a video of water from Tatio and another of mud in Bolivia, a few days later. And I was slightly resourceful. The area with the geysers also has a thermal pool, so I brought a swimsuit and towel with me. There was no way I was actually going into the pool. I wrapped the towel around me like a blanket; in the photo you can see it peaking out from under my coat.

I did think to ask how cold it is going to be in Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia, (the world’s largest salt flats) where I head tommorow.

Even colder.

Thank goodness this small town has an outdoors store and I have a credit card.

New acquisitions!

New acquisitions!