Cataratas de Iguazu, Argentina


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Bus Trip Megasuck to Buenos Aires

Mon Aug 5, 2002 8:52 pm

Good news first: Iguazu Falls was definitely worth the 25 hour bus ride (really!). We saw the Brazilian side first, which gives a good overview of the expanse of the falls. The Argentinian side, though, is much more comprehensive, and lets you get right up next to the gushing water.

On both sides, we had our first encounter with strange wildlife -- a cross between an anteater and a raccoon called a C---- (we can´t remember the proper name at the moment) PLUS we saw a Cabybera (excuse the spelling) though it wasn´t a rodent of unusual size. Perhaps it was a baby.

The Argentinian side took the whole day to go through. There are a whole bunch of walkways that take you over and around the falls. We ended the day (at the advice of our kookie 60-year-old bus driver who has seventeen children and an 18 year old wife) with a boat "ride" up to the falls.

It was a lot like the river rafting rides at King´s Dominion or Disney World, where you hope you aren´t the one who is going to get soaked. In this case, EVERYBODY got wet. Why? Because our boat was filled with a MAD Argentinian family, who kept screaming OTRA VEZ MAS after every near drowning. The mother on the boat was none too pleased, though she was trying to be a good sport. She had quite a death grip on the bar -- plus, well, it was only 50 degrees out. We didn´t really want to get all that wet either.

That evening, our new friends, Nick and Tonya, convinced us to go with them to Ihla Grande, off the coast of Rio. Everything was a go, until a few hours before we were supposed to leave. They bailed, because Tonya was sick.

It was a beautiful, sunny day out, so we convinced ourselves that heading south to the cold wouldn´t be that bad. OFF TO ARGENTINA!

Now for the bad part: Not really bad, just out of the Twilight Zone. At 3 o´clock (we had left our hostel for the bus at 9 am -- damn border crossing) we finally board the bus for Buenos Aires.

The bus was sweltering. So much so, that Patty and I thought we were coming down with some new sort of illness. It smelled like feet. We had a newborn baby behind us, a fat toddler beside us yelling Papi (dad) and staring at us, and the toilet in front of us.

We were forced to watch "Swann" and "Battlefield Earth" (or Battlefield Megasuck, depending on who you talk to). "Swann" was not any better than Battlefield Megasuck, though it had boobies, if that´s what you are into.

The bus was stopped MULTIPLE times by La Guardia Nacional, who checked everyone´s identification cards while drug dogs climbed amongst our luggage, but nothing compared to the totally surreal dinner that was to come.

We filed into a restaurant in a bus station. Pretty typical, except for the man "playing" the electric organ. Then a woman joined in singing to the Paraguayan Polka music, and was giving shout-outs to the nearby villages. Of course, only myself and Patty found this entertaining, which made it all the more bizzare. They were also filming the excellent music as we ate, and had floodlights on us.

OH- Did I mention that we are probably big famous stars on Latin American TV? There was some news reporter at the hostel we were staying at in Foz do Iguazu, with his scoop on the cheap food at our cafeteria -- floodlights there too, yay.

We finally made it to Buenos Aires at about 9 this morning, and got coherced into another hostel. We´ll be moving to a comfy hotel in a couple of days. Bonus -- FREE internet here. :)

Had a brief stroll around town today, and will be taking it easy for awhile.

Peace out, Alison and Patty

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