Trip Start Mar 01, 2006
551Trip End Dec 01, 2007
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So I started my Monday program a half day late. First and above all, a visit to LAN Chile, one of the airlines part of OneWorld, with which I have my round-the-world ticket. I though a couple of hours would do, it took much longer, but in the end success was there: I now have a brand new itinerary.
After all that I got out of the LAN office quite late, went for my first meal of the day at 5pm, and then met up with Debbie who was in the city center doing her shopping before going home (after 9 months traveling in South America). I had not been yet to the Congresso, so we headed that way. Crossing for the zillieth time Avenida 9 de Julio we stopped for a sunset picture of supposedly the largest avenue in the world, although I have no idea if it is true, and in fact I don't really care, although I can confirm it is big.
The congresso has been built on the model of the Capitol in Washington, but the night was there, we could not see anything, there was no lighting on the building, the traffic was terrible, and HUGE mosquitoes were feasting on our blood... It was time to get in somewhere and have a coffee!
Spent a couple of hours there, it was cool except for the mosquito bites that could not stop swelling.
Back home at around 8, as I knew Guada had a lot of work and that it was supposed to be my last night in town. So I cooked diner, interrupting her for a while in her project that she had to hand over the next day, of course.
On tuesday I packed my stuff, leaving my big backpack to Guada, taking only the minimum for a week in Uruguay. I went out to buy a few things for Guada, as I had helped her a little to fill the fridge and a bit more to empty it. I found her a bottle of Drambuie, beverage to which I think she is now addicted, just like anyone who drinks more than three glasses of it.
It is also the longevity secret of my grandad: a sip directly from the bottle after each meal!
I went out to the spanish school to say goodbye and to bring Sofia a cd of pictures (from her birthday in february! Better late than never), and on the way back I walked around the Palacio de Aguas Corrientes, which I unfortunately could not visit.
I kissed goodbye to Guada and headed for the harbour, to the Buquebus terminal. The buquebus are the ultra fast passenger boats crossing the Rio de la Plata between Argentina and Uruguay (which also have a land, or rather fluvial, border further upstream).
At first it looked a bit like taking a plane: Buy the ticket, check-in, go through immigration... but at the safety check they X-rayed my bags and let go a swiss army knife and a no10 opinel... and then at the customs, they stamped me into Uruguay, and then stamped me out of Argentina (the Argentinian customs officer taking ages looking at the shining metallic portions of my Laos and Russia visas... you know, like on a credit card, when the bird appears and changes color as you move the card...???).
Walking to the boat, I first heard it, and it sounded like a gas turbine! Four huge exhausts, and a profile that looked like a mix between a tank and a stealth fighter. Once inside, there was no way to get out during the river crossing, as the boat speeds at 35 knots.
The Rio de la Plata looks morelike open sea: so large that you can't see the shores, and the wind does manage to lift a swell. As for the tides, I don't know exactly where the freshwater-saltwater mix takes place.
I had left BsAs at night, and an hour later we landed in Colonia.