Hello from Santiago, Chile,
You usually read my weekend rants with their incredibly positive tone. And you must get sick of it.
So if you want to hear about me in an unhappy mood, this is the one to read! It's nothing too terrible, but here is the story…
I was so, so happily going about my routine in Acapulco earlier this week. You know the story, awaken to my glorious view surrounded by my beautiful family and dogs. I was in the gym every day and was feeling incredibly productive. You may have noticed I wrote almost every blog this week. I actually wrote them all in a day or two. I was just so centered and full of Vitamin D and energy from the gym and my three times daily "jugo verde" as my cook there knows it… which is all manner of vegetables blended into a nice drink that had me almost feeling euphoric by Monday of this week.
I knew I had to get to Chile sometime soon. We've been doing so many things here and things have been progressing so much that I just sensed I had better get down here just to even understand the progress happening every day and, like any proprietor, just check up on everything. But every day I've been putting it off. I was just so happy for the last few weeks I didn't want it to end.
My wonderful wife whose cheeks had almost returned to normal after her root canal then said to me, "You have to go… now." This is very strange because I travel so much for work that she is always angry I am not there enough. "Why?" I asked. She told me, "I feel you need to be there." She is INTJ under Myers Briggs too (which most anarchists and libertarians are) and INTJs do a lot on feel or, "intuition" (the "N" in INTJ). That is not to say we read tea leaves or go to psychics. It just means we tend to put some weight in our decisions based on paying the most attention to impressions or the meaning and patterns of the information we get.
And with her also being born in southern Mexico, she just seems to be connected to things more than most. I actually call her "Legolas" a lot, after the Lord of the Rings character who often seems to go into an almost trance as he intuitively senses things and seems to see things coming. I can't even count the number of times she's told me, "it will rain tonight" in a place where it maybe rains once or twice per year in the dry season. Or that an earthquake is coming. There must be something to it… the animals also seem to sense these things.
In any case, I don't read too much into it, but she's right so often that I give it extra weight. And so, I found myself happily on my patio in Acapulco on Monday afternoon booking a red-eye flight through Mexico City to Santiago that night, arriving at 10am on Tuesday. That is one really great thing about what we are doing at Galt's Gulch Chile (GGC). I can be from my place in Mexico to Santiago in less than 12 hours. And from there it is only about a 30 minute drive from Santiago airport to Galt's Gulch.
Upon arriving at GGC's three-bedroom condo where we house staff temporarily I found that there was nowhere for me to sleep. I worked most of the day and by the evening I was too exhausted to even find a hotel. So, I slept on the floor. Oh, and besides not being any place to sleep there were hardly any blankets, pillows or even towels available for me to use. So, I slept on the hard floor with barely a half-blanket to cover me. And, as well, it is now late fall here and can get quite chilly at night… but not chilly enough that many apartments even have heating.
The next day was almost the exact same, work all day and then be too tired to find a hotel by evening so I did it again. Shivering on the floor through most of the evening.
By now it was Thursday and I felt something wasn't quite right with my body. This was definitely a huge culture shock from living in air-conditioned comfort from the heat and humidity in one of the nicest beds you'll ever see (I always spend good money on beds… if you don't, you should consider it!) and I am usually surrounded by my wife and a few chihuahuas who tend to snuggle into whatever crevice is available. In other words, it is eminently comfortable.
I then had a three-hour meeting that should have taken 10 minutes, but that is how it is in Latin American culture. The first two hours of every meeting is just platitudes and talking about unimportant things. To make things worse, however, Chileano Spanish is much different than the Mexican Spanish I am usually surrounded by so I had to actually pay a lot of attention just to even understand what was being said.
By the time it and a few other meetings were over it was nearly 10pm and just due to circumstance, I hadn't even eaten yet. I decided to go to the glorious Costenera Center which is full of great restaurants and bars for some food and to try to get some work done on my laptop. Along the way I ran into TDV'er and now employee of GGC and TDV Passports, Terry Vogel. His story is amazing. I met him the last time I was here and hired him on the spot. He had travelled to Santiago with his wife and three kids almost purely on my recommendation and is absolutely loving it. I'll be interviewing him this week for Anarchast… definitely check it out. He's got his kids in "circus school" here now and they make most of the money they need singing on the streets and at schools!
Terry had two handfuls of groceries when I saw him and I told him I'd be at the new Hard Rock bar (which is fabulous) working on my laptop if he wanted to drop by later. By the time he did I had my head in my hands and I apologized to him. I said, "I don't know what's wrong, but something is definitely wrong". I hadn't felt that tired and ill in a while. I guess the travel, work and two nights of sleeping on a freezing floor had finally caught up to me.
Terry amazingly got out his iphone and searched all the hotels within walking distance. He had stayed at many of them when he first arrived and advised which were the best. He then walked me to one of the hotels and I passed out no more than five minutes later, waking up in a hotel with nothing but yesterday's clothes and my laptop. I still didn't feel great, but I felt better after sleeping in a semi-warm room in an actual bed!
I then spent most of today working and in another three-hour meeting where I maybe understood half of what was being said. But my wife was right. There were many things that needed my attention here and it was a good move I came down at a moment's notice just to make sure everything progressed properly.
It's now Friday evening and I am still in my clothes from Wednesday (as I still haven't returned to the GGC apartment) and there isn't one empty seat at the Hard Rock bar (which I consider to be my new late night office, just like Mangos in Acapulco) so I am sitting at a bar/restaurant called Enzos next door… at least until a seat opens up at the Hard Rock.
Due to my horrid week this month's issue of TDV to subscribers went out nearly two days late and I apologize! I hope our subscribers can understand why. But I think it will be well worth the wait.
Although I did start off with a very negative start… it gets worse. TDV has lost its first family member this week. We are sad to announce the passing of Tom O’Brien, a great freedom fighter and hard money advocate who wrote in the first year of TDV’s existence the column, “Perspectives from the Original Silver Trader”. Tom was on the front lines of the silver market and traded the first contract to ever trade on the COMEX and ended up playing a significant part in the Hunt Brothers takedown by the federal government and spent years being attacked by the US government. He was truly an amazing individual and always full of great insights into the history of the precious metals market.
Here was a quote from Tom that was perhaps even more poignant now than it was when it first appeared in the September, 2010 issue of TDV, “I have looked into the face of death many times and walked into fire without fear. If we should have learned anything from centuries of life-changing events, it is those who face fear without fear who triumph. The heat of battle is most intense just before the tide of battle changes.”
Today, the battle is getting more intense by the day and we are saddened Tom won’t be here to see the tide of the battle change towards liberty in the coming years. Of course, before we get to a better world there will be plenty of risks as The End Of The Monetary System As We Know It (TEO- TMSAWKI) grinds on. We extend our greatest sympathies to Tom’s family and good friends.
On a much more positive note, we actually have an interview with Terry Vogel about his experience bringing his entire family to Chile on nothing but a wing and a prayer as well my take on "constitutions" and Ed Bugos' insightful info on what is really going on in the world economy and markets. It's another jam-packed issue of all the news, info and analysis you need to survive The End Of The Monetary System As We Know It (TEOTMSAWKI) that we put out every week for subscribers.
On top of that, we haven't even fully announced it yet, but dozens of TDV Groups around the world have now been put onto private Facebook pages (for TDV subscribers only) where you can meet liberty-minded people around the world, including, off the top of my head: Lagos, Nigeria; Ilian City, Taiwan; Sao Paolo, Brasil; Medellin, Colombia; Riga, Latvia, St. Petersburg, Russia and dozens more. All of these are headed up by TDV subscribers who can give you the lay of the land wherever you may have interest. Or, even if you are just travelling, you have a place to meet up with like-minded people… as well as numerous places in the US and UK like Birmingham in the UK or Hawaii in the US where you can also get together and devise your escape plans or how to survive the coming collapse.
The most popular TDV Groups are in Jim Karger's hometown of San Miguel de Allende in Mexico where numerous TDVers have already expatriated with Jim's help, my part-time abode in Acapulco and now in Santiago, Chile where countless TDVers have already begun to migrate.
I believe I have a meeting with a number of TDV'ers who came out to see Galt's Gulch tomorrow too. I hope I am feeling better by then. This is about as unhappy and un-fiesta-like as I get. I've even got an offer to meet a number of GGC people tonight in another part of town and think I'll have to pass. One more good sleep in a warm bed should have me feeling back up to snuff though.
We are about to open our official GGC office in Santiago and a second employee/guest apartment in Vina del Mar so before I come next time I'll just make sure there is room for me around here! I didn't realize how fast things are growing. And we still haven't even offered pre-sales. My work and the work of the entire team here this week, though, tells me we are deliciously close. I hope when I come here a year or two from now it will be to stay in my own bed in a nice little casa on the grounds of GGC… and maybe with a chihuahua or two also.
ON THE ROAD AGAIN
There will still be no rest for the weary, however. I plan to leave here Wednesday night, arrive in Acapulco on Thursday morning and leave for Vancouver to the World Resource Investment Conference on May 26th and 27th. I'll then likely return to Acapulco for a few days and then back down to Santiago for a few weeks prior to Las Vegas and a documentary interview on the bane of government regulation and perhaps one World Series of Poker tournament in mid June before heading to the free-er state, New Hampshire for Porcfest from June 18-23. I'll then either return to Acapulco for a few days or hit Vegas again for another tourney just prior to the Liberty Mastermind Symposium in Dallas on June 28th and 29th.
Phew. I feel tired enough already without looking at that schedule. But TEOTMSAWKI fast approaches… I'll rest a bit after the collapse. Until then, I've got slaves to help free.