Mendoza, Valparaiso & Santiago
Trip Start Aug 23, 2012
48Trip End Aug 20, 2013
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From Buenos Aires, we set off back into Chile for our last few days in South America. Remembering our plan to go into business selling descriptions of wine to wineries, we decided to head back to Mendoza for more practice. A lot of biking and 2 wineries later, Daryn has once again come up with a host of apt descriptions for all types of wine; I suspect his description of one particular cabernet sauvignon as having an 'alcoholy burn’ will be a big seller for the 2013 year. We did a degustation tasting with the owner of one winery who confirmed (secretly – probably because he himself was a bit drunk) that you need a huge amount of imagination to describe wines and consume a huge amount of wine to actually taste the flavours described on the label.
Departing Mendoza, we crossed over the Andes (which included what was undoubtedly the longest border-crossing we’ve ever done - 3 hours) to arrive in the wonderful city of Valparaiso. The city is very wonky – very bohemian with masses of colourful buildings, loads of street art, friendly kitties and not a single straight road (it makes London look like a grid system). After hours and hours and hours of walking, we spent our final night sitting in our hostel room with the windows wide open listening to classical music playing from somewhere down the street while shaving Daryn’s head; it was very relaxing – probably less so for Daryn as I was holding the razor.
Our final South American stop: Santiago. As we’ve already posted about Santiago I will keep this short: we ate ice cream, drank margaritas and went to the pool… that’s pretty much it.
South America has been absolutely amazing, the blog / pictures do not do justice to how beautiful this place is; it should be on everyone’s overall lifetime bucket list.
We will miss the Andes, Patagonia, and the rainforest; the weather and freshwater pools without chorine; cheap beer, the menu-of-the day’s in the northern countries and the parrilla’s (meat grills) in the southern countries, dulche-de-leche biscuits and maxi-quesos (cheese flavoured crisp); luxury bus travel as well as the kind people – those who tried their best to understand our poor Spanish and those who pretended to understand what we were saying and were kind to us anyway.
Next stop: Auckland!