Homer was right...

Trip Start Sep 01, 2011
Trip End Dec 06, 2011

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Flag of Uruguay  ,
Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Uruguay may seem like an odd country for us to visit as it doesn't offer much in the way of attractions, but this is why we went here - we wanted to experience a sleepy little South American country.

We caught a ferry to Montevideo and arrived to rain, rain, rain.  We had two options - brave it like most travellers in a new city would, or move on to sunnier shores.

We checked our bank balance which decided our fate for us.  During our three days in BA, we burnt through 700!  This was double our budget!

Not only did BA relieve us of our money, but it also robbed us of our sleep.  Too many late nights and early mornings make for two tired and cranky travellers.  We headed to the little surfer town of La Paloma so we (and our bank account) could have a rest.

As much as we love eating out, it grows tiresome when you do it twice a day - the waiting for service, trying to work out what the waiter is saying, choosing a meal from a huge menu you don't understand, having the waiter try and talk you into getting the more expensive version of everything you've ordered, and then ending up with something that doesn't even slightly resemble what you thought you were getting - it's too much!!

Thankfully our little hostel had only one other person staying there, so we took over the kitchen for three days and were living at half our budget.  Result!  We were back on track.

Our first night in La Paloma, we slept for 12 hours, had breakfast, and slept for another two; our second night, we slept for another 12 (I told you we were tired!), it was heaven.

Our stay here really was a holiday within 'The Trip'.  We relaxed with our books and went for walks on the beach.  Despite a massive thunderstorm on our first night, we had blue skies for the most part, but it was so windy, sunbaking wasn't really an option.

On our second day, we saw a sealion on the beach.  Unfortunately, it was dead.  At first I thought it was a dog, and then Rob tried to convince me it was a penguin (he knows how much I love them).  When I worked out what it was, I felt like yelling "Aaaah, it's a dead sealion!  Help!" thinking an animal ambulance should come and remove its body.  People walked around it like it was part of everyday life, but for me it was just really weird.

With a bit of time up our sleeves, we moved on to Punta del Este, which is a glamorous beach resort frequently visited by stars.  It reminded us both of the Gold Coast - tacky and full of high-rises.

We were starving when we arrived, so treated ourselves to an awesome seafood platter and then checked out the beach.  It was freezing but there were about 20 surfers in the water.  I get that surfers 'live' for the waves - I've seen Point Break - but they are all loco if you ask me.

Uruguay is apparently a very laid back country and we've only heard good things about it, so we were surprised at the number of rude and unhelpful people we encountered.  Maybe they have zero tolerance for non-Spanish speaking people, or maybe they are just assholes, but unfortunately these individuals earnt Uruguay the 'Rudest Country' award for 'The Trip' (nice one, dickheads).

Uruguay is also in the lead in the 'Worst Food' category.  The few times we did eat out, we regretted it.  I'm going to repress these memories and try to remember only the seafood...

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