Buenos Aires - Day 24-28
Trip Start Jan 31, 2008
254Trip End Ongoing
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The bus stopped this morning a couple of hours outside Buenos Aires, so I rushed out to have a cheeky ciggy. While I was experiencing a strong nicotine rush from my first cig in 12 hours, a guy starts speaking to me in Spanish. My response being "No Espanol", I think I'll be using this phrase a lot in the coming months. Anyway, he then starts speaking to me in English, of course when he asks where I'm from, the conversation swiftly moves onto football and Carlos Tevez. It's turns out his Grandfather was Irish and his arms are covered in Gaelic tattoo's. He use to be a professional volleyball player and now he works for Microsoft, a really interesting chap. We had long chat back on the bus about the Falklands, really interesting to listen to Argentinean's opinion on the subject.
When we arrived in Buenos Aires, caught a cab to the hostel Obelesco where I'll be staying for at least the next 4 nights. One of my friends from the Aconcagua climb has joined me for a few days so we have the luxury of twin room rather than the dorm. The hostel is really cool, clean, friendly and in a great location. We dropped our bags off and went for a stroll to get our bearings. Stumbled across the marina by the river with it's swish bars and restaurants and returned to the hostel for a relaxing afternoon after stuffing our faces at an all you could eat buffet for less than 4 quid! I'll defiantly be back, will be a good and cheap way of putting some weight back on after the Aconcagua climb. The price included big steaks and deserts, bargain!!
Met some people at the hostel and was invited to go to a reggae club. We didn't leave the hostel until 1.30am to go to the club, crazy! If I was at home I'd be thinking of hitting the sack at this time. People don't go out in Buenos Aires until the early hours and the clubs don't get going until 3am. Turned out to be a really good first night out in the city! Me and my friend left early at 6am, leaving the other guys to carry on partying, it had been a long day for us after the overnight journey from Mendoza the previous day.
Day 25 - 31/01/09
Due to arriving back at the hostel at 6am this morning, I didn't wake up until the mid-afternoon. No cultural sightseeing done today for obvious reasons.
Walked to Palemo Hollywood for another night out, it's a Saturday night, would be rude not to go out in Buenos Aires on a Saturday night. We walked the 8km from the hostel to Palemo, didn't look that far on the map but it took us an hour and a half, it was a long stomp. I suppose it was a good way to see some of the city. Didn't arrive in Palemo until just before midnight after wandering around aimlessly for a while trying to find the bars which we knew existed somewhere. Eventually we found the action and had a couple of beers in a lively bar.
Then I went to a club until 7am, my friend was knackered and went back around 2am, I decided to stay out. The club was a pretty cool place playing Latino music upstairs and modern dance downstairs. Upstairs was a absolutely jam packed but really fun. Of course I didn't have a clue what was being played but every time a track was changed the crowd shouted in appreciation, they obviously knew what was going on. Returned back to the hostel in a cab in the daylight and managed to fall a sleep by 8am!! Another crazy night or should I say morning in Buenos Aires.
Day 26 - 01/01/09
After a debaucherous night on the town, today was obviously dedicated to sleep and general laziness once again. Woke up at 3pm and loitered around the hostel before going out for a brief walk before sunset. Stayed at the hostel this evening for a quiet night in. Buenos Aires is relatively dead on a Sunday so I just sat in the smoking room at the hostel all night talking to the other residents. Still didn't go to bed until after 4am, my body clock is completely screwed. I've now fully adjusted to Buenos Aires party-time which I don't think is one of the world's major time zones. I will need to make a time zone change at some point before leaving.
Went out for an all you can eat buffet lunch once again, it's beginning to feel like groundhog day, sleep all day, buffet lunch, shower, go out, sleep etc. I think I need to leave this city before it becomes even more of a pattern that can't be broken.
I'm planning to move onto Montevideo in Uruguay in a few days on my way to Salvador in Brazil for carnival, I have just over 2 weeks to make the 3500km journey by bus. Going to be a massive overland mission, but the end of the road in Salvador will be worth it, guaranteed!
Day 27 - 02/01/09
An attempt was made today to see some of city in the daylight. Caught the metro to Palemo in the early afternoon and had a bit of an explore, didn't really see anything too spectacular but did stumble across a splendid horse racing track with some beautiful gardens and architecture. The races were about to start when we arrived, had a quick look around and kept on walking. Returned back to the hostel to meet up with some guy's we've met over the last few days. Every Monday in the city a samba drumming group play in an outdoor arena, the evening's called, "La Bomba de tempo". So around 15 of us from the hostel went to see them play. There must of been a few thousand people there, drinking and having a good time. What an amazing night! The band were completely awesome and the atmosphere was equally as good. I treated tonight's session as a warm-up for carnival in Brazil in a couple of weeks. The Brazilians I was with said if you think tonight was good, multiply it by a hundred and it may come close to carnival in Brazil, can't wait now. The show finished at 10pm, so we headed to an after party in what looked like a run-down apartment block. The Latino music continued in this really quirky and cool place. We all headed back to the hostel around 1am when the heavens opened, a massive electrical storm broke out and we all got drenched waiting for the bus. Not so bad because it was such a warm night, was actually quite nice to cool down a bit.
Day 28 - 03/01/09
Posted my mountain gear home this afternoon, a grossly depressing experience. Cost me 523 US dollars with DHL, nearly died of shock but I have no other choice. The contents of the bag are worth a small fortune and I didn't want to risk sending my bag with the unreliable Argentinean postal system, I'd been warned. At least 10 days of travel money blown on sending a bag home, bloody ridiculous!
Anyway, I've finally made the decision to leave Buenos Aires, I've Booked my ticket to Colonia, an old Portuguese colonial town just across the Rio de la Plata river in Uruguay. I leave tomorrow morning at silly o'clock, which translated is 8am. I'll have to be a good boy and try and go to bed at a reasonable hour, otherwise I just won't get up regardless of how many alarms I set.