My Final Days in the City I Love

Trip Start Jun 16, 2006
Trip End Aug 15, 2006

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Flag of Argentina  ,
Wednesday, July 12, 2006

South America. The land of irrational emotion. Lately, I`ve found myself oscillating between different sentiments. Sometimes you just don`t know how to feel. I leave tomorrow for the west and my head is spinning. I don`t know when I`ll be back in Buenos Aires again, a city you`ll either hate or love. I won`t be able to sleep much tonight.

I`m looking at my map (just a standard political map) and I`m wondering how I'm going to do this. I`m finally overwhelmed by the scope of my grand design. The logistical planning had been fairly easy thus far, and the hardships few and far between. But now I`m headed into the mountains during the winter. I`ll have altitudes to battle, as well as a very real concern of time and funds. I have just over a month to travel 1000s of miles. I have Chile, Bolivia, Peru and Ecuador on the itinerary. I`m not sure what it is going to be like doing this alone. Benjamin encourages me to hitch-hike and get off the beaten path. I`ll consider it in Chile and Bolivia. But I also dearly wish to see Colombia. I know, tough problems to have.

I guess I`m becoming something of a porteņo (city dweller) brat. I`m sleeping 9-10 hours a night. I don`t know, me matas, the city just sometimes makes you lethargic. Especially when you have satellite tv and a comfortable apartment to stay in. You can do nothing all day and still feel awesome. Not feel guilty. Hey, this is my vacation. Back off. I know, it`s all very bittersweet in a way.

Definitely a strange few days since I`ve returned from Uruguay. A lot of thinking, reflecting and imagining. I`ve returned to the beautiful chaos that is this city. I ran back to the Rosadal (the fancy park) in Palermo. It truly is one of the nicer (worst adjective to use) parks in the country, only the park just feels a tad too small. But it was a spectacular day.

It was sunny and in the 60s. The porteņos were out in full force. They`re wearing jackets. POLAR! The new fashion trend. Silvia keeps telling me to buy one or I will die in the Bolivian winter. "Abrigate Alan!" the portenos tell me. Put a jacket on. I`m running through the park in a t-shirt and running shorts. People stare at me like I`m a crazy man from Bolivia. They`re walking their dogs. I fly by with my long, gorgeous hair and dangerously captivating beard. I`m tired of explaining that I`m enjoying a break from the Arizona heat and that I love their immaculate weather.

Today I met up with Benjamin after he got off work for some lunch. We wandered aimlessly about the city before joining the family for mate. Benjamin and Mario got into a discussion about the melancholy nature of the city. It was quite an interesting debate to watch--Benjamin was arguing about the highs and lows of the city, and Mario didn`t agree with him. Benjamin described the city as deprimente, depressing, not necessarily the best policy to go by. But it was a good natured discussion.

Martin stops by for dinner and wishes me bon voyage. I`ll miss him and I`ll miss the Salazars.

I can only look forward to the open road to Mendoza.
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