Mendoza - Day 22-23

Trip Start Jan 31, 2008
Trip End Ongoing

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Thursday, January 29, 2009

Day 22 - 28/01/09

We left Puente De Inca at 9am for the 3 hour ride back to Mendoza. Around an hour into the drive we were stopped by the Argentinean police and asked to produce our passports for inspection. The policeman looked like a 12 year old kid on a power-trip, he was asking many questions of our driver and when we took my passport, he spent many minutes looking for my Argentinean visa stamp amongst the myriad of other stamps in my almost full and rather tatty British passport. Eventually after many minutes, he allowed us to continue on our way. Maybe he didn't like the British for obvious reasons.

After arriving back in Mendoza, it was actually quite nice to catch-up with world events after over 2 weeks without communicating with the outside world. A lot has happened since I've been away. The US has a new president for starters. Obama took office when we we're on the mountain, hopefully we're coming back to world which is on the edge of some positive change. We can only hope and pray!!

This evening back in Mendoza we went out to an all you can eat Argentinean barbecue, the same place we visited before heading to the mountain. I must of eat a kilogram of steaks tonight plus various other dishes. Felt completely blotted, don't think I've ever eaten so much in one sitting, couldn't move, I felt like a beached whale once I was done. After the meal we wandered or should I say waddled around town and sat outside a café for had few beers.

Tomorrow evening I catch a bus to Buenos Aires which I booked on the internet this afternoon, had to use the Google translator to understand the online booking form, I really need to learn Spanish! I also booked a hostel in the heart of the city for 4 nights. I'm quite looking forward to hitting the road again to start my South American adventure for real. This year I plan to cross the continent entirely overland rather than flying frequently like I did in Asia last year. Should be interesting experience, South America by bus!

Day 23 - 29/01/09

Didn't do a lot today, caught up on some internet admin and continued to be depressed about not summiting Aconcagua.

Went for a walk around hot and sticky Mendoza, a 70 degree temperature diffrence from the freezing conditions on the mountain. My body still needs to adjust to this crazy variance in temperature.

Waited around at the hotel for most of the late afternoon before catching a cab to the bus terminal in the south of the city. Tonight I travel to Buenos Aires which is a 15 hour, 1000km drive to the east. Booked an executive seat on the bus which was definitely the right decision. The seat is a big leather lazy-boy which reclines way-back with masses of leg room. The bus is really cool, probably the most comfortable bus journey i've taken in my life. We got a big meal of steak and mash, which was included in the price and a couple of hours into the journey the steward starts handing out bingo cards to the passengers, I declined due to my poor knowledge of Spanish numbers. It was hilarious watching the other passengers play though. Don't get this on the National Express in the UK.

When I wake in the morning, I'll be in the vibrant Argentinean capital, I plan to relax and party after a tough and disappointing couple of weeks in the mountains.
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