Sore ass, hangover, scratched glasses, new country

Trip Start Feb 27, 2007
Trip End Jul 01, 2007

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Where I stayed
Hotel Mitru

Flag of Argentina  ,
Monday, April 2, 2007

NOTE: Hotmail is not loading here for some reason, so I cant get to any emails... will try again in Salta! Sorry!

Yet more things I have learned about myself....

- 2 days on a horse is my limit
- Whisky is not my friend
- getting up at 245am to catch a bus does not work for me
- things are WAY more $$ in Argentina

So I am in Argentina now, crossed over this morning at about 7am (8am Arg time).  I am exhausted.  So tired tat i feel ill... mind you the whisky didnt help with that either.  Heres the story...

At 9am on Saturday morning my guide Gustavo (a 19yr old boy who was incredibly shy, but quite sweet) and I mounted our horses (Ballo was mine).  For the first few hours we were with Pablo and 2 other girls (ironically both traveling alone, but going the oposite way then me).

The scenery was amazing, very much like Arizona, but grander.  It was a great day, full sun with a nice breeze.  Good times.

After the others left it was just Gustavo and I and he asked if I wanted to run, he offered to take my camera bag adn away we went.  I have trotted (ouch) and I have galloped, but this was a true run and at first I was scared, but I got my balance and loved it.  We ran as much as we could.

Lunch was a egg and tomoate sandwhich, they had 2 for me, but I couldnt eat two without upsetting my tummy, so Gustavo had one, I think he felt bad, but hey I offered.

By about 5pm we arrived at the aljomiento (rooms) I thought we were alone, but there were 2 other groups... one a couple from France who kinda stuck to themselves, and the other a guy from Belgium named Wim.  WeŽll get there in a sec....

After feeding the horses we all headed upstairs for dinner.  Soup and an omlette with rice. I was already not feeling great (all the bouncing I think) so i barely ate anything.  Problem #1.

Wim and I got to talking and it turned out that the night before he was at the table next to me for dinner.  He was talking with the most arrogant adn annoying Isreali girl who seemed to think she new everythign about the energy crisis, and alt. fuel!  HA!  It was everythign I could do to keep my mouth shut when she told Wim that she had never heard of ethanol and therefore it couldnt be real!

Wim is 27 and has just graduated as an areospace engineer (2 days before his trip in fact).  So when I realized this guy was the dinner guy we had a good laugh.  He said he noticxed me that night, but I find that hard to belive as I sat at my table for 35 minutes waiting for a sandwich with my head on the table... see wasnŽt feeling well then either.

Oh, while Im at it... my bed that night was a double (nice) but was made of straw (not so nice) there were holes in teh ceiling (ugh) but  anice breeze coming in.  I slept quite well actually.

Alright, so dinner ends and Wim and I share a beer.  Then the guides join us and a few more beers get shared.  The French leave and Wim pulls out the Whisky bottle.  I had one small glass for sipping.  Well thats what I started with.  Then Im not too sure.  We all got to laughing, the guys were all teasing me and I guess I wanted to man up and drink I bit more.  Problme #2 - dont try to out drink Bolivians!!

Well by about 10pm we decided that since the bottle was empty it was time to head to bed. I stood up.  I fell down.  Apparently it took the 3 guides to safely get me downstairs where I proceeded to puke my guts out, numerous times over.  Let me tell you I was pretty sexy!  The French woman got up and helped me out.  Wim asked the guides to move back to give me soem air.  They put me to bed and I had the spins so bad I crawled back outside and puked more.  I think about 2hours later I finally passed out.  Wim slept in the bed next to mine with the bucket to keep an eye out for me.

The next morning I was incredibly embarrased adn felt like a HUGE pile of shit.  Believe me the last thing I wanted to do at that point was get on a damn horse.

The guides laughed at me and said it happened ALL the time, and I wasnt that bad.. Gringas dont know how to drink they said!

Wim tried to convince me to stay longer and ride with him (he was doing 5 days).  I told him that unless he was willing to drag my sorry ass behind his horse there was no way.  The trotting had given me a really sore ass, but the vomiting had pulled all my back muscles.  They are still so tight that they are bulging out!

So, Gustavo and I headed out with the French and their guide.  We ran quite a bit, but I was very quiet adn both guides asked why, they didnt seem to understand that every bump made me want to puke again.  Plus te sun was so strong with no wind at all - the heat was not helping.

By 5pm we got back t Tupiza, Gustavo walked me to the tour agency (we passed my old hotel where I picked up my laudry and mvoed on) I stayed last night at the Mitru, a bit more $$ but more comfy (mind you now that I am in Arg, that has come all into persepctive - Bolivia is DIRT cheap!  No more $3 hotels!!).  I had an incredible shower to remove all dust and horse smell, when I noticed soemthing wasnt right... what is that?  Oh no, it isnt is it? Yes, yes it is... its a nasty heat rash on my ass!!  It just keeps getting sexier, not only do I walk like a cowboy, not only do I groan when I sit down, but add to all that a ugly rash on my ass.  Sigh... plus I scratched the hell out of the left lens on my glasses.  Defintiely going to drive me nuts, and will try to get it buffed in Santiago I think. 

I was in bed by 730pm. And slept off and on until the alarm went off at 245am.  Why?  Well you see, my bus to villazon left at 4am and I needed to pack up again.

So by 6am I had arrived in Villazon and headed to Immigration.  Along the way I changed my Bolivianos for Arg pesos, keeping 15Bs for immigration payment.  They asked for 50Bs... Why?  Well, In dumb and forgot that my tourist card was valid for only 30 days, I had been in Bolivia for 34.  No big deal, you just have to pay for it.  Alas with no Bs, I decided to lie.  I told them I was late because of the road blocades from La Paz.  Those of course are true, I just was never stuck in one.  The bought it and for some strange reason didnt even charge me the 15Bs (which are unofficial anyhow). 

Off I go to Argentina - by foot.  Next immigration.  No issues, just a stamp valid for 90days.

Buy the bus ticket to Huma, leaves at 850am, its only 630am, but i forgot they are an hour ahead, so the wait wasnt too bad.

ARGENTINIAN BUSES ROCK!!  Great seats, leg space, windows, movies (too loud) and a hot water dispenser - sweet!

I arrived in Huma and immediatly knew that I wasnt going to be here long. Its a cute pueblo, but Ive seen enough cute pueblos at this point.  Im ready for some greenery and or a bigger city.

So i choose a hostal out of the bible, of course it is 1km out of town, there I am walking in the heat with all my packs hiking to this damn place.  LESSON: once it starts to feel to far, it is, turn back and stay int eh city.  I didnt.  The place is cute, but the walk isnt fun.  Im paying 22APs, or about 7USD. And thats for a drom with 4 beds (so far only me though).

I slept for about 3 hours and then forced myself up and out. Been walking aroudn the city since.  HAve bought many souvenires here, they are better quality than in Bolivia, but the price is higher too. 

I leave for Salta tomorrow where I hope to take a day tour into a National park.  Then i think Ill head to Mendoza then to Santiago Chile.

Im supposed to meet 2 germans adn 1 american for dinner tonight at 8pm, but I really just feel like sleeping.  I dont want to stand them up though.  Well see.

- I dont even know whats in my head.  During my nap today >I dreamt that my family came to visit with me.  I was incredibly happy in my dream, it was great to see them and talk to them again.
- I feel a bit guilty that I am not going out to see the canyons around here.  But I am tired adn sore. I really dont want to.  I hate to say it but seen one canyon, seen em all.  Thats bad but how I feel right now.
- Im really hoping that the scenery changes as I move south.  I dont want to say it, but Im really getting bored of the same scenery out here.
- OK I cried ont he way back on my horse. I dont know why.  I blame the hangover, the heat, the pain and my period.  Its just the being alone thing.  Im really not enjoying it, I truly miss having people to talk to who know me, who I can realte to and I have history with.  Its great to meet the new people and chill with them for a bit, but its just not the same.  I am very envious of people here as couples or with good friends.
- For soem reason I cant seem to get Brazil out of my head - I am really looking forward to it.  Still nervous for Rio, but I really cant wait to get there.

- the 3 graves in the salt flats for the 2 women and 1 child who froze to death one night
- The french guy fell off his horse who tripped, thankfully he was fine ( horse had bad cut on knee, but OK)
- MOM-BETSY - I will send my package from Salta.
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