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Notes from BA

We decided to brave it in a youth hostel this time, a pretty funky sort of place in a pretty dodgy part of town – San Telmo. This used to be the posh part, but Yellow Fever moved all the rich people up to Recoletta.  The advice from the lovely girls on reception when going out at night was, “keep hold of the children’s hands, it is better that they are alive than free – Great! One advantage was that it had the best old architecture around worth dying for.



Congress Hall, the market on Florida Street and weird trees in spring

Given that we only had one more night of accommodation booked, we needed to get sorted pretty quick, so Kai and I went to find a travel agent that we had met near Recoletta Cemetery to sort a trip out to Iguazu. THREE hours later we emerged – a travel agent with OCD may get all the details right, but when they start trimming the paper because the printer twisted the paper by 1 degree, it all gets a bit much. We did however sort ourselves out with flights and accommodation in Iguazu to go and see the waterfalls.

(I have also found that my normal sense of direction has been letting me down when faced with the grid pattern of streets. Normally, I take a look at the sun, fathom out roughly which way is south and then on we go. It has taken me nearly a week to wake upto the fact that the sun shines from the north here – DOH!)

Next we tried to book some accommodation Rosario – our next destination after Iguazu. To my horror, all the accommodation was fully booked. Nothing. It was a bank holiday weekend and Rosario is a popular destination for people from the capital. Well that put a cat amongst the pigeons. A quick decision followed, no option but to return BA for the weekend – this last minute planning is taking some getting used to!

One other challenge that we had not braved were the local “collective” busses. These are a fairly motley and random collection of busses where the number does do not necessarily match the bus route. I think it is a ruse by the taxi drivers to get tourists to use taxi’s. So when we came to go to the airport to catch the flight to Iguazzu, there was no option but to try the mystical bus.

With a sense of trepidation, and probably not enough spare time, we board the number 45, pay with coins (these are like hens teeth) and promptly drive straight into a massive traffic jam. There is a big demonstration, barricades and riot police abound (is it following us around?), it is a scene more akin to the Italian job after they put the false data tapes in. We start to sweat it a bit, keep checking progress against the map, but do eventually make it in time to check-in.

Only to get hauled aside by security…..Kai’s hand luggage is taken to one side for unpacking… how surprised we were to find an old pen knife! This knife has made it through ALL the other security systems so far, in Prague, Crete, Athens, Heathrow, BA and Colonia!!!! Now that finally the travelling public is safe again, we fly north to Iguazu.

sometimes we sensed we weren't welcome to join in

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