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Out of the bubble......... One's destination is never a place, but a new way of seeing things.-- Henry Miller

Winter in Buenos Aires!

USA | Thursday, 11 July 2019 | Views [45]

Kitschy Evita reminders...

Kitschy Evita reminders...

July 1st 2019

At the Miami airport:

Smooth “sailing” with a few speed bumps, like having to wrap - and pay for - each peace of luggage (except the bike boxes)

in blue nasty plastic, arguing with the nice woman at the ticket counter about not having a return ticket: She: We can’t let you fly to Argentina without a return ticket. Us: No, we are not coming back to the US in a few weeks......no, we are not flying out of the country.......yes, we are leaving Argentina in about a month - riding our bicycles through Uruguay to Brazil....yes, we know we can only stay 90 days.....yes (again) we are going to leave the country...riding our bikes out of Argentina, no, we are not flying.......

I guess it is hard for people to grasp the concept of not having a return ticket. Especially at the airport. 

She said, after talking to her supervisor: Ok, we will make an exception.

Here we are, after a 9 hour sleepless flight:

It took us almost 4 hours to put our bikes back together!

After an Airport Starbucks experience (it was about the caffein) we wiggled our way out of the airport and on route to Buenos Aires city to our friend Marisa’s house, which took us another 4 hours...Marisa later told us that we were pedaling through some “questionable”/very poor areas, but we were greeted by friendly and none threatening people we passed on the way. 

I slipped right into the understanding on how the traffic works - mentally and physically I seem to remember when I left this beautiful city five years ago: there is an order to the madness! The flow of traffic is based on intuition, not on rules! I don’t know if it makes any sense, but, in other words: anybody participating in traffic in any shape or form (that includes pedestrians, cyclists, horse carts ...and so on..) is expected to do what ever they deem fit at the moment, which results in everybody having sensitized their radar on maximum and has no qualms about people crossing at a red light on a super busy road downtown...... jay -walking..anything like that, pretty much ALL THE TIME. What it looks like is an entire different story and it appears that people are nano seconds away from getting hit (which is true, but it doesn’t happen any more/or less than in countries where rules are respected) what is missing in all that is: aggression/violence!

Once one gets used to the chaos - at least for me- it actually feels safer than somebody speeding up to scare me, because I didn’t stop at a stop sign or walked across the street when the light had barely turned and on top of it yells profanities in my direction, which is pretty much what happens in the countries I call home (Germany and the USA). There is a calmness in this chaos, if you understand what I mean? With a slightly different flavor, but same concept, I have experienced this in India/Nepal and pretty much all of Latin America. There is less “personal space” too, like standing in line for a bus, people actually stand together much closer or accidentally run into each other without apologizing....either oblivious or a friendly nod is all you get.

My Spanish is lacking...embarrassing how much my brain did not retain over the past 5 years! Language wise I’ll be tossed around enough on this tour, I am afraid...we’ll be riding out of Spanish speaking territory pretty soon....driven by the cold climate.....I feel a bit like I am in a hurry. We sent our winter stuff home to CA...I am afraid how our nights camping out will be? First too hot now too cold ...oh, well....traveling the world...

For now we are “stuck” here in Buenos A. It appears that our precious, antique and very useful but rare camping-stoves are held in Argentine customs: We played it smart and sent them boxed up via USPS ahead of us, since TSA took ours away 5 years ago when we flew back to the States. We acquired another beautiful set of the same kind of stoves (thanks to a little help from our friends) and thought this was the best way to make sure nobody takes them away from us.

I don’t really know what the story is and why this is even an issue, so, I’ve been reading up on Argentine Internacional Correo...not very promising! I am worried, ....we may never see our stoves again in spite of all the precaution!

But here we are, winter or not, stoves or not, this city is a gas and staying with Marisa and her more than adorable twins is beyond description.

We had four days all together before Marisa had to go back to work and the babysitter spends all day with the twins. It was a holiday here as well: ArgentineDeclaration of Independence. What today is commonly referred as the Independenceof Argentinawas declared on July 9, 1816 by the Congress of Tucumán.

Now we gonna focus on getting our stoves back...what the hell?

 

PS

Summary movie clip from our last days in the US of A:

 https://vimeo.com/346718532

https://gopro.com/v/Nlq116XQao2Qm

 

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