Mar 18, 2012:
"Tu Problem Es Mi Problema"
Distance to Date: 1887 km , 1132 miles
For the past month, the "Tu Problem Es Mi Problema" civil movement has been protesting throughout this region (Aysen). They have 11 demands which include better health care facilities, protection of the traditional fishing industry, subsidies on gas and petrol, and wage and benefit equity. So far, only the demand for better health care facilities has been addressed.
The impact to the region, and in particular to Coihaique, has been evident. Cars line up at gas stations because fuel is limited due to roadblocks and protests. And stores only get spotty deliveries of supplies. Here's an article that summarizes the situation well: Click Here.
We felt the impact when we tried to get to Villa O'Higgins more than a week ago. Boats didn't have enough fuel to ferry people and supplies across Lago O'Higgins. And in Villa O'Higgins, as in other towns along the Carretera Austral, grocery stores were empty and gas stations often displayed "No Hay" (there is none).
We check out Unimarc in Coihaique's town center. (Note: The street vendor below the big red "U" sign sells sopaipillas with super-hot chili sauce!)
Deliveries are spotty and these shelves are filled and/or empty on a day to day basis.
In particular, veggies and fruits are a day to day gamble. They are picked up fast.
Lines fill up to get the veggies weighed and priced. By 5 pm, choice veggies are pretty much gone.
At least critical items are available!
And of course the Coca-Cola Corporation makes sure its products don't get held up by roadblocks and protesters.
Same with the liquor industry.
The day before, these shelves were empty. But today, they are filled with yogurt and dairy products.
And bread is always available. Should there be a bread shortage, things would probably get violent.
Don't get in Christi's way when she's buying bread!
We are lucky and comfortable at Yolanda's. She cooks up a roast and invites us to share it with her family.
Yolanda dishes out chunks of lamb and beef. Things are in short supply, but still available. The protesters want to limit supplies, not to cut off supplies entirely. At least not yet!
Christi can't wait to start.
Yolanda has apple trees in her backyard.
So we bake our first apple pie ever thanks to online recipes.
Unimarc did have golden raisens, so we added them to the sliced apples to spice up the filling.
Filling is almost done. Can't go wrong with fresh apples!
Tauru wonders how he should top the pie.
Where is Martha Stewart when you need her? Does the pie look right?
30 to 40 minutes later (in an oven with no thermometer) ...oh, yeah!
Looks don't matter when an aroma of lemony apples fill the kitchen!
We take a break to let the pie cool. All over town: "Aysen! Tu Problem Es Mi Problema."
Even in front of our favorite bakery!
All over the downtown area.
Along our way back to Yolanda's.
There's been news about the government wanting to cut off media about this protest. It's currently contained mostly within the region. International news hasn't fully absorbed it, yet.
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