It’s Chilly in Chile…

Tick-tock indeed.  Those two little words said a whole lot about what’s up these days. I’ll try to add a little detail…

First, to the title of this post:  It’s a cloudy and chilly day in Santiago, perfect for tapping out a little update, so I will.

An awful lot has happened in the last months, and I’ve been hesitant to write because there were just too many unknowns.  Things are now starting to gel, so it’s time.

Many who are reading this blog already know that when we got back from Argentina, we retrieved our bikes from the Denver airport (unharmed by the transit), and went back to Santa Fe.  Some also know that I went back to work, and Heather lit out for the west coast.  That was one hellova ride, from the sound of it, but it is her tale to tell and I won’t say much other than that she made a loop through Los Angeles, the Bay Area, Portland, Seattle, various locations in Washington State and North Idaho, and then down through Montana and Wyoming.  It was a LONG solo adventure, and many riders live a lifetime without making such a journey.  I know she had a great time and tossed in a little enlightenment along the path, and grew to love her little BMW even more.

Meanwhile, I was back at it haggling with the Feds at Los Alamos which is/was my job.  At the same time, a message exchange started with my company’s office in Santiago, Chile.  The mining sector in South America is booming, and our company builds a lot of the processing facilities required to extract and transport the minerals.  Mostly copper, but also some other stuff.  Mostly in Chile and Peru, but spreading out rapidly.

Long story short, they offered and I accepted a position in Santiago, and Tuesday, Heather dropped me off at the Albuquerque airport and American Airlines welcomed me to Chile the next morning.  Woohoo!  A little faster than the last time I came to Santiago…I’ll be here a month, go back to Los Alamos for a month to transition the new troop into my old job, and then Heather and I will return here for good.

A word about Los Alamos — I will definitely miss the crew I worked with there — already do.  A truly fine group of folks that will make it hard to leave, but good to know I had the chance to work with such quality folk.

I should make it clear that I AM writing this from a hotel in Santiago — and yes, it is winter here.  Been great all week, but cloudy and cool today.  Snow on the mountains.  Like an aging and handsome woman, Santiago even looks good in winter.

A piece of very good news is that James (son), Becky (daughter in law) and Molly (granddaughter) decided to move to New Mexico, so they’ve slid into the Rafferty homestead there in Santa Fe.  Huge big changes from rural Kansas, and I hope they really enjoy it.  New Mexico is good living, I think.  I continue to ask…does anybody else see the irony that everybody moved to New Mexico when I announced I was moving on???  hmmmm….

t our motorbikes couldn’t make the trip this time — as Heather said in her post,  Chile doesn’t allow import of used personal vehicles unless you’re just passing through.  So our bikes went to a new home.  Funny the attachment you make to a device that hauls your butt through a couple of continents.  Maybe I now understand how Lloyd feels about his horses…

Now we’re working the problem of replacing them in Chile.

After all, there’s all of Patagonia at our doorstep from here, and we didn’t get to make that journey the first round.

A word about the crew I work with here — absolutely first rate.  Some are ol’ chums I worked with on previous projects, many are new friends.  They’re all buried in work, but happy and upbeat and on the move.  This is going to be fun…

That’s a very brief wrap up of a lot of happenings in the last months.  There’s a bizilion details I left out, but the central themes are here.  Hope to have more adventury stuff to write about in future, but as Heather said — there’s a bit of “tick tock” right now, waiting to get everything arranged to get her down here, to get settled in a more permanent dwelling, and to get on with the journey.

Hope all are well and happy, and please excuse the long silence.  I promise there’ll be more interesting things to write about very soon…

Ciao!  mike



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4 responses to “It’s Chilly in Chile…

  1. larry hall

    really great to hear from from you mike..I tried to call when you were still in santa fe but I realize you were busy getting ready for chile..

  2. Bill Walter

    Mike…Sure glad I caught you in Santa Fe. Santiago is a bit of a far reach for me. Keep in touch. An email will always be welcome.

  3. Well now —- amazing what a google can do. Was just thinking about you, and ‘found’ you off in Chile ! Looking forward to following your wanders and adventures down there.

    Still fly fishing, but mix it up with two darling gr’sons (age 3 and 4).


  4. Sue Kreutzer

    Hey there Mike ! am I missing something ? haven’t seen a post on this website for long time. Would love to hear/see what you all are up to ..

    winter has arrived in state of Colorado : at least it is trying hard in the mountains ; we’re fine on eastern side so far. Still working all the leaves down from the trees.


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