The Aftermath

October 11, 2015 - Buenos Aires, Argentina

After the Inca Trail, the weather in Cuzco picked up, and I was back in my shorts and Tshirts for the first time since Fiji. Hooray! This is what I came travelling for!

After the most epic walk of my life, I hobbled and moaned like an old woman, struggling to get out of bed and walk down stairs. So, I quite hapily settled for dropping all of our laundry off and sitting in the sun on the roof top terrace. The most strenuous activity we managed was a chocolate making course, which was really good fun and delicious.

Back in the UK, when I as desperately trying to save myself money, I boldly booked the cheapest flight to Buenos Aires I could find. It was to take two days to get there, flying via Brazil and with an overnight stopover in Lima. Why does it always seem fine at the time you book it? Well, whatever. It was grim. I had to leave Cuzco a day earlier than Louise and spend an afternoon and a night in Lima, which was the worst place I visited whilst I was away. I tried to find a cafe during the afternoon but got three blocks from the hostel before I realised that EVERYONE was looking at me and I clearly didn't belong there. Damn being blonde. It causes so many issues. From now on I'll only holiday in Scandanavia. So I settled for the supermarket and a dinner of bread rolls and funny pink cream cheese (don't ask) eaten all alone in my room whilst watching Gordon Ramsay shout at people in spanish.

Meanwhile, Louise was having just as fun a time, being abandoned in the middle of nowhere by her horse riding instructor. True story. Apparently it was a long old walk back to Cuzco and she was furious. LOL.

Anyway, against all odds we both made it to Buenos Aires safe and sound.

The next challenge was getting around the city. Buenos Aires is BIG and we knew we needed to brave the bus if we were going to see it all. We asked the really friendly staff in the hostel which bus to get, where from and what to say. Simples. We were ready! So we got on the bus, presented our "oyster card" thingy, and said "dos ir Palermo por fa vor". He yabbered back and wouldn't take the card. So we repeated "dos ir Palermo por fa vor". Again, he just yabbered back in Spanish. We were holding up the queue now and everyone  was looking impatient, so we freaked out and got off the bus. Boooooo.

But, that was nothing on the time we tried to go to La Boca. The bus driver actually pulled over and threw us off the bus. I genuinely think he was refusing to drive us because we were foreign and couldn't speak Spanish. So buses were a minefield. You never knew if they were going to let you on or not.

One great thing to come out of the racist bus driver episode was that he threw us off right in the heart of San Telmo, which we hadn't seen yet and totally fell in love with. We gave up on the idea of La Boca and sat in San Telmo square drinking beer in the sunshine and watching tango dancers instead. Ha! Who's laughing now mister bus driver?

Toward the end of our stay in Buenos Aires, we decided to have a proper Argentinian night out. Apparently, Buenos Aires doesn't really come alive until the sun goes down, so we though we'd better make the effort. We wanted to do it properly and not wimp out early, so ate an empanada (mmmmmm) at 5pm to keep us going, had a long nap afterwards and then set off to the restaurant, arriving there for 11pm. There was a huge queue because the restaurant was AMAZING and everone wanted to eat there, so we didn't actually sit down until midnight. Madness! We had the classic bife de chorizo (massive slab of steak) with chips and red wine, and we didn't roll in until 4:30am. Woohoo. Just like proper Argentinians!

Another highlight of Buenos Aires was the antiques market which happens every Sunday in San Telmo. It is on a huge scale, and there are street performers and street food carts everywhere. The place is packed and the atmosphere is great. We browsed the stalls and settled down for a SUnday afternoon cocktail in a bar off the square.

 


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