BUENOS AIRES, ARGENTINA – DAY 1
Well, we’re finally here…we were supposed to arrive at 8 AM this morning, but we didn’t dock until 2 PM and get off the ship until nearly 3 PM. This has really screwed up our touring plans, but we were among the fortunate ones. Some people who were getting off the ship missed their flights, and some of those flights were only once-or-twice-a-week…Some passengers are saying that the Argentines “punished” the ship for visiting the British-controlled Las Malvinas aka Falkland Islands before coming here, so they put us 16th in line to cross the one-lane ship channel of the Rio De La Plata, a huge estuary that feels more like a sea but is actually a river that runs to the Atlantic Ocean along Montevideo, Uruguay and Buenos Aires. As you cruise through parts of this river from the Atlantic to Buenos Aires, there are parts so wide it is not possible to see any dry land on any horizon on a clear day.
As we were waiting to disembark we said goodbye to Father John Vetere of Toronto, Kal’s Catholic counterpart on the ship, who was disembarking in Buenos Aires. In the more than a month that Papa John (as Nina calls him) has been on board, this was the first and only time we ever saw him in a collar. He is the most laid-back priest we have ever met (and we’ve met many) and for most of the cruise was hanging around in running pants and T-shirts. Absolutely cool! John is admired and respected by all members of the clergy on board and by all the passengers with whom he has had contact – a wonderful human being with a great sense of humor and great sensitivity.
Well, after we got off the ship we took off with a group of friends to “the” yarn shop in Buenos Aires, where Nina promptly started to “go to town”.
There were three husbands along in the group of 10, but since nobody had a Glock handy – “Shoot ME First!” – we ended up going back to the ship with the spouses 3 hours later, after the “yarn excursion”.
The two of us then dumped the yarn in our stateroom and headed out to Calle Florida, the pedestrian mall in central downtown Buenos Aires. After buying a few gifts for family we headed back to the ship for an evening Argentine folkloric presentation that was really nice,
that included some tango, a dance that in Argentina is described as “the vertical expression of a horizontal desire”,
or, as they say in the pinball machine world,
TILT ! !
Lots of gaucho foot-stomping
and swinging of the bolas
by a very talented group of folkloric dancers
and then to sleep for an early wake-up tomorrow so we can post all these posts.