Buenos Aires Argentina

Buenos Aires is a BIG ASS City.. It really is all about the steak and tango. Pam and I attended a tango class and had dinner and a tango show. We took a tour by boat along the El Tigre Delta a fantastic series of byways that connect to a main river. The shores are covered with vacation homes. There is even one where the past president Domingo Fausto Sarmeinto lived. It has been encased in glass to protect it from the elements. We did a ton of walking. Stayed for two days and headed to Machu Pichu Peru.. WOW wait for that one. All in all this was an ineresting city but way too big for us..

Montevideo Uraguay

 

Montevideo is the Capital of this tiny country. The city is quite beautiful with exquisite houses. You can see that there is a laid back attitude towards marijuana here. The grow shop sign greets you when you get off the ship. There are amazing handicrafts for sale nearby. Pam wanted another shot of her “babies” from the Ralli Museum. I also included the graduation photo from out mixology class on the ship. Full regalia bathrobes and shower caps. That class was a highlight of the trip. Watching a container ship being loaded and unloaded was anmazing. On the way out we passed a ship graveyard. Last stop will be Buenos Aires

Punta del Este Uraguay

Punta del Este Uraguay playground of the rich. Houses are in the millions. Green parrots all over the place. The sculpture garden at the Ralli museum had a sign that read stay off the grass and dont touch the sculptures.. Nice job Pam.. They had a very impressive art display including Dalis. First thing you notice is the absence of any one but white people. Turns out the Spanish and Italians populated the country and the natives were all wiped out. Population of a little over 3 million. Original development was from money arriving from undisclosed sources with little vigilance. Tighter control now

Penguins Rule the Nest

Pam, amongst many others was disappointed that we could not make the ports where the penguin tours were supposed to take place. The ship added a couple of additional ports including this one where there is a large colony of Magellan penguins. It is nesting time and they lay the eggs in burrows. They are amazing to watch. Videos are too large to post here but I have some of them marching in line and swimming the back stroke.

Around the Horn

On the 4th day of a two week cruise the seas got angry. With seas to 30 Ft and winds to 100Km we were denied permission to dock in our next 3 ports. People were a litle disgruntled since they were the most sought after ports but there was nothing we could do about it. We cruised the Beagle Channel named after Darwin and saw the glaciers. We entered the Straight of Magellan and cruised there also. Finally we braved the Cape Horn where the Atlantic and Pacific meet over Antartica. 400 ships hav been lost there. We were given certificates for making the crossing. Then we headed up to Argentina and Uraguay. We were not able to land in the Falklands either.

Life aboard the ship was amazing.. We had a culinary center on board with several classes and guest chefs including Alex Seidel. We had a special dinner with a guest chef involving pairings of wine and South American foods. There was also a Haloween pairing dinner with fine wines. We also took a mixology class and graduated with certificates from that also. We made good friends with the bartender Christian and the head of the booze department. I posted pictures on facebook of the flaming drinks. In the class we had to make a number of cocktails and had to drink them all 🙂 Next stop Puerto Madryn Argentina.. Here come the penguins…

Puerto Chacbuco

Our second stop was at Puerto Chacabuco, another lovely place in Chile. We got off the ship and negociated with a taxi to take us on a tour. Unfortunatley for Pam we didnt find taxi guides that spoke english but I ended up making friends and ultimately think we got a better tour because of it. One cool thing to note here is that areas of the highway that are prone to movement are constructed with a seires of intricate almost interlocking tiles which allow them to move when necessary. Don’t have to keep repairing the road.

Back Online Puerto Montt

It’s been about a month since I updated this. I’ll start with the cruise from Valparaiso to Buenos Aires. Cruses are always a blast. Relaxation, good food and drink, very good company and good ports. Our first port of call was Puerto Montt. My friewnd Teri Graf-Pulvino sent a cab from to meet us. He gave us an excellent tour before taking us to Frutillar to lunch with Teri. Purto Varras was beautiful and reminded me of home. we saw waterfalls and a green lake. Beautiful. The big volcano had erupted in April and many houses had collapsed under the weight of the ash. Everything was still covered in a.  layer of ash. Our guide reached up and shook a tree and small rocks fell out that had been trapped. This was one of the mosst beautiful stops so far. I am blown away more by the similarities beween Humboldt and here than I am by the differences.