We climbed back onto the escarpment and left Rada Tilly behind as we set off south towards Puerto Deseado. Shrines popped up beside the road once again. Interestingly these little shrines mostly feature the maroon-reddish brown colour associated with Buddhist monk attire and are often surrounded by bottles. Maybe the glinting glass like surfaces attract the good spirits?
It was in Puerto Deseado in 1520 that the explorer Magellan hanged 2 mutineers. 58 years later Drake, the British explorer beheaded a man beside the same Spanish gibbet and carved his name and a message in Latin on a rock. Alas, we did not see the rock ……that is assuming it is still there.
Puerto Deseado turned out to be a bleak, frontier looking place…..not a lot going for it I must say. On our arrival we thought the municipal campground was closed, it had that unwanted, unloved, abandoned appearance.
Just when we decided to find a secluded possie and stay anyway, Harry, the Bolivian caretaker appeared from a building brandishing a great welcoming smile. He told us in sign language that he had been sleeping. He relieved us of 50 pesos, gave us some Penguinas brochures, hurriedly picked up some rubbish from the BBQ pit closest to us and disappeared from whence he came.
We strolled through the business district part of town to see what we could see and strolled back to the CG. It was a depressing experience to say the least.
We vaguely considered going to see the penguins but a 3 hour journey to an offshore island in a rubber ducky in strong windy conditions did nothing in the persuasion department for us. We are optimistic that we will see these Argentinian feathered creatures further south.
A monument of sorts to the Falklands War was situated on the foreshore. I got the impression that the locals were ashamed of the Argentinian involvement.