April 1, 2008 - Córdoba, Argentina

After Rosario we travelled west towards central argentina and to the city of cordoba which is the 2nd biggest city in argentina i think and also seen as been the cultural capital (maybe its just the cultural capital of central argentina though). Cordoba is a city of 1.2 million or so inhabitants with 7 universities not much to see there but alot of activities to do and it has really nice atmosphere - kind of place that just felt like it would be a nice place to live in.

On our way from rosario we just happened to be travelling on the first day of a countrywide strike by farmers, hauliers and country folk in general to do with taxes being brought in by government on exports of meat and food etc.. (not the first time we'd be effected by the strike) anyways all we knew at the time is that we where stuck in a massive traffic jam with no sign of moving for hours luckily as we where in no way stressed what so ever we took it all in good spirit - also it helped we where near a petrol station and restaurant with chairs outside to sit in the sun listening to the (the trusty) travel speakers chillaxing playing cards and chatting to the israeli fellas we met in rosario the night before - the craic was good and it was almost sad when we heard all the trucks starting to move about 6 and half hours after the initial stand still.

So we arrived later that evening in Cordoba and we hadn't anything booked so the search began for accomodation at about half 12 that night - we went to first hostel we where recommended and place where the israeli fellas where going but they where booked up and recommended another hostel near by which had at least 4 free beds so we grasped at the chance and took them as it was getting late - but turned out to be the worst place i've stayed so far - at first glance didn't seem so bad but the fact the was bed bugs in the room (which we found out after one of the lads was getting attacked and spotted them - luckily i didn't get attacked - but the thought of them in the room made your skin crawl and then i saw one the morning we checked out running across my t-shirt that was on the ground - big enough feckers dark red/black that bite and feed on your blood in your sleep - lovely ha!

We got out of there sharpish and booked into another hostel in centre of town which turned out to be a really nice hostel and myself, niall and shane booked in for spanish lessons as needed to get some sort of start/base to understanding what the hell the locals where rambling on about - so we did 4 days of lessons 2 hours a day with a tutor that we got through the hostel - and was really good although i'd need a few more and bit of practice before i would be able to hold proper conversation but it helped alot with understanding - might do some more lessons in mendoza on way back up from the southerly tip of argentina/chile. Anyways i'll not bore yee anymore with details of my trying to learn spanish. I took them few days fairly easy whilst doing the lessons - the lads did quad biking on one of the days but i thought i better not as my collar bone is only still recovering and prob would have been a stupid idea - luckily i was able to get in a dose of premiership football on tv that day which passed the time.

Cordoba was good craic and had good nightlife and there was good banter with fellow backpackers and locals - we went out after a bbq in the hostel one of the nites - the locals all drink this drink called fernet y coca (fernet and coke) which is basically an italian liquer mixed with cocacola - nice but has a strange taste off it and gives you a sore head the next day i found - its like there guinness and cordoba is famed for it - even the world rally championship (WRC) which happened to be in town the weekend we where in town had loads of fernet ads and all associated with it - i'm not that much into wrc i'd know some of the drivers and all tho but one of the lads Ger is mad into it and was at the recent wrc event in sligo/fermanagh and drove the one of the stages so he was delighted it was in town and we went to the opening of it where performers and hosts and special guests seated in front of an open air stage which cars drive up onto and then rev up and stuff and speed off - locals seemed to be going nuts for it and the crowd was pushy and swaying etc - so seems theres plenty of motor sports enthusiasts and boy racers here too

Not much else to report from cordoba - got my lessons done as planned - seen the city nothing specatacular but nice city especially the 'neuva cordoba' area - there is a strong italian influence in this town it seems as you notice alot of italian looking names on shops and italia references too - plus fernet is italian too i suppose.

Next stop was to be santa fe on our way to iguazcu falls but we soon found out we'd have to change our plans. 


April 3, 2008
What's with the cliff hanger ending?! Why couldn't you go to Santa Fe? I suppose I'll just have to wait for the next installment to find out... :-p
April 3, 2008
Don't leave us hanging like that Brian! :O
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