At our tour office we couldn't halp but notice two loud, irritating Australians and two miserable looking Americans. Crossed our fingers that they wouldn't be in our jeep, which, of course, they were. Charlotte was bumped off to another company but looking at our group it felt like a bit of a result on her behalf.
After an hour in the car with the Australians I was ready to get out and walk back. Our worries about them had been confirmed and then some. They were loud, rude, selfish, disrespectful of our driver and just occasionally, annoyingly funny. Every time they saw a dog they shouted 'Perro' which, as you can imagine, was fun for all of never. The Americans on the other hand were a decent just engaged couple who could hold a conversation.
Salt Flats stop 1: Train cemetary. Some rusty old trains. They'd made some swings and a see saw out of some of the remains. It was a load of idiots taking pictures in silly poses. Not my thing. In fact I'll take this opportunity to say how much I hate jumping photos. WHAT ARE YOU ACHIEVING YOU MORONS? Sure take a photo as a memory but then lets just enjoy the place.
Wherever there is a popular attraction I'm forced to endure:
'You jump on 3 I'll click on 2'
'Damn, okay I think I have to click on 1'
'No you jumped on 2'
'Nearly got it, maybe I click on 1.5'... And so on until anyone who wanted to just sit and enjoy the view has cut their wrists any anyone who isn't sat with me being miserable and intolerant has formed a queue to go through the whole same dimwhit jumping process. Who was the first person to start this trend and how do I have them murdered?
Had to wait ten minutes for the Australians to finally get back.
Stop 2 - The salt flats themselves. Interesting place. Each Jeep that turned up had a load of white people get out taste the floor and confirm that it is indeed 'salty'.
Having had our twenty minutes of staring time we once again had to wait for the Aussies. So delayed that I had to shout out to them and point out that the driver had been beeping his horn for them. They had been busy taking 'nudey photos'.
Stop 3 - Lunch. One of the Australians was incredibly rude to the driver to the point of threatening him because he wanted to get into the bags on the roof of the jeep and get his sunglasses. Our driver, Gregorio, was half way through preparing food and rightly ignored the twat.
Stop 4 - Cactus island. Weird island in the middle of the flats. It has Cacti on it. Got a bit of time to walk around and leave the Australians which was good because I'd had enough of them calling Gregorio any name but his own. 'Greggo, Gregorrrrry, Gregamundo'.
Stop 5 - Salt hostel. Pulled up to what looked like a dump from the outside. Team Australia tried to start a mutiny and wanted to steal the Jeep and go somewhere else. Me and John got out and had a look at the place. It was charming, with salt floors and walls and a great view across the flats.
Day two - Some incredible views of flamingo filled lakes and volcanoes. I'd also managed to be a little less irritable around the Australians.