On to Argie. Time for steaks and low altitude.

Trip Start Oct 01, 2007
Trip End May 07, 2008

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Sunday, November 4, 2007

Arrived at the border crossing of Bolivia-Argentina and I can nearly smell the clean sheets, the houses made of real bricks, the bakery´s, the modern cars and the huge steaks!  Bolivia is cool to see but adios, im sick of being sick!
Border crossing handy enough, got another stamp in the passport which is always cool! 8hr bus drive later we arrive in Salta! Wow, what a town.  Apart from beautiful scenery all the way down the town is just gorgous.  If ever there was a town for the perfect 2.4 children, white picket fence and brady bunch living this is it! All the hostals were booked up so we painfully had to spend two nights in a hotel that had a shower, room service and right on the main square! Tough goin! Went for dinner in a lovely restaurant with Anthony and Sara, an Irish-Italian (non mafia!) couple.  Cons mouth was watering ordering the steak, Lou got gorgous fish and a lovely bottle of wine!  Up early and chilled around the town.  As it was Sunday all the shops were closed and it officially becomes family day! Remember it used to be like that in Ireland?  We stumbled across the main park and oh my god! I thought it was lovely but you readers probably think this is sappy....there were family´s everywhere.  Giant playgrounds, like with seriously high bouncy castle slides that would make you want to be a kid again, kids on mini kiddy quad bikes supervised round the park, pedalo boats on the mini lake with kids feeding ducks, the smell of candyfloss, cakes, hotdogs, popcorn and giant sausage burgers everywhere...anyone remembering bray for the day or wexford?...there were giant trampolines with bungee ropes for hire...a market all along the edge of the park selling giant swirly lollipops like rocks...remember them?....across the road was a show where locals did a little sketch, there was traditional dance...singing...a family singing in turn...everyone clapped, no one threw stuff or broke stuff or screamed.....people walked round selling jelly in tubs, icecreams as big as your head with cones that were made of the real waffly stuff, you know the real crunch stuff...and slices of fab looking cakes....there was the usual trinkets on sale too, conor bought two bracelets...to match his handbag...ah no joking! It was a family sunday out in Salta.  Hardly any cars on the roads, shops closed and family all together all dressed in their sunday best, just looked cool!

Today we went WHITE WATER RAFTING and oh my rapids god it was brilliant! Always wanted to do it.  So cool!  Had a feeling I´d mess up somewhere along the way so obvious first mistake was not copping on i was on the left of the dinghy so when he shouted "left side paddle backwards" Im still paddling hard as i could forward!  Boat spins...guess the rest! All so funny tho, everyone laughed! When the guide says "INSIDE" you have to sit as low as possible on the floor of the dinghy basically as fast as you can coz you hit rocks and you´ll fall out if you dont so Lou gets "inside" but kinda forgets her paddle so it floats down the river!Its all good tho they have a dude in a kayak to help stupid people who fall out to get back in boat or people who are too good looking to be handling two things at once and let their paddle float down the rapids!Its all part of it and its all fun! The rapids were fast and great craic, they were on level three but the guide was telling us level four is cool so we might do that in south Argentina but that level 5 you just keep flipping in the dinghy on the rapids so bit more dangerous and you spend most of your time getting back in the boat.  The views all along the canyon are unbelievable.  Squillions of years ago plates under the surface collided (tectonic??) and pushed the surface upwards and made mountains however when it did this the surface was covered in an ocean with subsequently dried up but the mountain side have algae and gorgous stone all different colours.  Its like being able to see what the bottom of a deep ocean bed looks like in mountain form...if you get me! So back to the rapids, oh we saw condors too...so Rapid 9 was really fast and the guide is great coz he spins you and you crash into boulders which is gas craic.  Back for a quick shower and change and over to the main bridge over the lake. 

So we get to the bridge and its crunch time! We decide feck it we were going to do one of the extreme sport things.  Nobody else would step up to the plate although there was only our small rafting group there. We decided on the peunting.  Its like a bungee jump except the ropes are attached to your stomach area and you jump off a platform out over a bridge 120feet in the air and swing! Its pretty cool. Conor went first and Lou went second!  Conor managed to jump to the side expertly if not a little freak faced but when lou went she decided to fall sideways and send herself into a spin screaming "I´m gonna hit the bridge". (Note from Conor)No offence to Lou but if you´d seen how close she was to the bridge (while thinking she was gonna hit it) you can see why she may have trouble parrallel parking. Pretty scary but BRILLIANT!  We wanted to do it again. We got our corny certificates for doing it and sat down to really nice lunch.  That night we had a few well deserved beers after moving into a hostel and zonked out for the night. 

Next day we went on the cable car up the mountain above Salta for a view of the city, a coffee and a walk around the waterfalls park.  There was a bit of a breeze while going up which had the cable car swaying a bit but it just adds to the fun. This isnt as funny as Conors blogs so I´m just gonna end it with we got on the bus that night to leave Salta.  The End!
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