I checked out of my hotel this morning saying goodbye to my precious ocean view in Rio and hello to Igaussu Falls, Argentina.
The hotel staff called a taxi for me and had told the driver that I was en route to the airport. Or at least so I thought. Turns out my driver did not speak English and had no idea where he was taking me. Lucky for me I had a nice honest driver this time and he called his English speaking friend and had me talk on his cell with him. He kept referring to me as the gringa! Grr. Turns out there are two airports in Rio. Thankfully all was settled rather quickly and he got me to the required airport on time.
Had an absolute lovely flight abroad TAM airlines and arrived in the Brazilian side of Igaussu Falls in no time. Was greeted at the airport by a very lovely lady from GAP Adventures and she took me and another gentleman from Ottawa to our respective hotels after crossing the Argentinian border.
My hotel … well it´s wet, smelly, and a far cry from my last hotel and my next hotel. Its even a little dirty. I will have to grin and bear it for the next 3 days.
I went into the city and had another nice cab driver who drove me to a place where I could exchange my Brazilian real for local pesos.
I then hunted down an Internet cafe. What can I say? I like to be connected. Nerd alert!
Argentina, while green and beautiful is very poor. It reminds me of my time in Equador and Peru.This truly is a third world country. Where I was protected from the poverty in Ipanema, I am not here. There are kids chasing you down the street begging for money.
Tonight, while I dined on a local Malbec and some pizza, kids kept coming up to my table trying to sell me something so I offered them food instead. I gave out more than half my pizza and I can say that is the best thing I have done since I got here. They broke my heart – so cute, so young, and seemingly without parents supervising them. They probably thought they outsmarted me – the gringo white lady, but I don’t mind. 🙂
While I ate, a local man eyed me and began conversing with me. He tried speaking with me but I did not understand a word he said. I believe he invited me back to his place to have wine with him. He certainly was bold and annoyingly persistent. He came back three times. He also told me through hand gestures and some broken English that my eyes were as blue as the sky. LOL!
I look forward to meeting the rest of my group tomorrow. I hope we can hang out over the next few days.It has been kinda lonely so far! I hung out with 4 guys from Alabama during my Corcovado-Sugarloaf tour but that has been it so far.
Had a glimpse of the waterfalls from the plane. SPECTACULAR! Tomorrow should be a good day.