Saturday, July 5, 2008


I love 3-day weekends - we just spent a long 2 days in Uruguay and still have a Sunday to sleep in. Uruguay was great, I'm so glad we went.  We took a boat over to the Colonia de Sacramento yesterday morning and had long meals and explored town all day.  We stayed at a really great hostel in the old part of town, which has older architecture and a small-town feel.  There were probably as many vespas and motorcycles and cars, and it was great to get away from the traffic and noise of Buenos Aires - it was the first time we had seen drivers stop for pedestrians in a while.  Everywhere you go in Uruguay you'll see people walking around with thermoses of mate under their arms and a cup in their hands - it's the national drink and it's prevalence makes me think of Seattlites wandering around the city with coffee.    

Today we slept in and got lunch at a local cafe, and I was thrilled to find that they served white rice.  I have a running list in my head of food that I miss terribly - rice, bok choi, avocados, smoothies, and salad are at the top of the list.  It's really tricky to order at a restaurant and get what you want - things generally come a la carte and you have to be reeeeally specific sometimes.  For example, I've learned that an "ensalada" in South America doesn't imply that you'll be getting lettuce.  I ordered a mediterranean salad yesterday, which turned out to be tomatoes, chicken, tuna, a hard boiled egg, and a pile of onions.  And the other day Molly ordered "grilled cheese," which was a plate of cheese that had been grilled.  But I think that what Argentina (and occasionally Uruguay) lacks in salad and grilled cheese sandwiches it makes up for with fried bananas, delicious coffee, and the never ending parade of meat.    

The weather was gorgeous today - it must have been at least 70 degrees, I still can't believe it's winter here.  We spent a couple hours playing at the beach, got ice cream, wandered around an artisan fair, caught a beautiful sunset over el Río de la Plata, and took the boat back to Buenos Aires.  The whole trip went off without a hitch, and it was a great way to bond with everyone else.

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