Adios Mick, Mo and Mel.

We (just Mog!) are parked for a second night at a fine but expensive campsite (Huimpalay-Tray) on the south side of Lago Villarrica between Villarrica and Puconin Chile. Facilities include a pool, soccer field, tennis/volleyball courts, and big lake side lots with picnic tables, beach and a sizzling view.

Yes that is a volcano in the background, and yes that is smoke coming from it, and it glows red at night! It last erupted in a big way in 1971, and is considered very active.

"But where is Mel" I hear you ask.

It had always been Mick and Mo's intention to ship Mel from the west coast of South America to Australia. They have been trying to book either a RoRo or a Flat-rack from Santiago to Australia for the last four months. With very little success.

Not only could they not get a ship booked, they could not even get a sensible answer from the ship's agents in Santiago. Eventually after a frustrating barrage of e-mails, the agent eventually admitted that there were no suitable ships. So after four months of wasted effort, Mick and Mo had to change their plans and attempt to ship Mel to Australia via the UK!

This meant trying to book a place on one of the Grimaldi RoRo ships that sail from Buenos Aires to the UK every two weeks. Grimaldi is unusual (unique?) in that they have five or six cabins available on their ships so that you can travel with your vehicle. Traveling with your vehicle makes the logistics of exporting it from Argentina and importing it back into the UK far simpler.

The end result is that today Mick and Mo found out that the only ship with space available leaves in about a week from the other side of the continent! Hence their abrupt departure. Good-bye Mick, Mo and Mel. Thanks for the memories. You will be missed!

Both Mog and K-Nine will be returning to the UK on Grimaldi ships in the next few months. When we leave I will do a detailed web page on the procedure and why it is best to book in France with an Italian company sailing from Argentina to the UK.

Stephen Stewart.

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