"It'll be fine, I know the general direction" I thought. However my soon to be new sense of freedom was put on hold for an hour or so whilst i played a game of back and forwards through the city streets, trying to get myself and Ghost Shadow on and off the right and wrong motorways and becoming increasingly frustrated, which led me to making some very illegal but swift moves. Finally I was heading toward my first stop, Valparaíso.
I clocked up the first 150k's and arrived to the run down bohemian coastal town.
We (Ghost Shadow and I) arrived around five in the afternoon. After a brief ride through some markets and centro, I took to riding through the magnificent hills where roads climb and weave away from the ocean. I was taking in all the interesting little streets and people, when a policeman standing on the side of the road pulled me over to say that it was dangerous riding in this section of the hills, especially with all my gear on the bike, and that I was safer in other parts of town.
Back in town, a dodgy looking character saw me, came over and said he knew of a place. He ensured me that his friend would watch the bike. I trusted him enough, but I was cautious, so instead I made him wear one of the ridiculous little chopper helmets and ride on the back. A few of his friends called out and laughed along the way, I believe a combination of him looking so silly in the helmet and them being interested in why he was on a gringos bike.
We arrived at an empty restaurant, and there was a bunch of ladies. I decided the big old room full of cats upstairs would be fine. She also let me ride the bike into the restaurant where I left it overnight for security. Of course the dodgy looking character stuck his hand out for some spare change.
After that I took to walking through the streets of the hills. I found the nicer area, which would be where I would stay the following night. Again absorbed, I found myself walking through a labyrinth of winding streets, staircases, pathways, and back alleys often crossing a bar, cafe, restaurant or side shop. Crammed with houses, and everything covered in street art, truly an inspired town.