17/5 Monday: After another epic sleep-in, we very slowly cooked dinner on the outdoor barbecue, then drove back to Montevideo. Matias had to go out to a concert, so the rest of us stayed in and played my first game of the Catan card game, it was epic.
18/5 Tuesday: Since we hadn’t really seen much of Montevideo, we went into the city to have a look around. The old town is really lovely and tranquil. We also visited a museum with Josefina – it was a museum of an Uruguyan Jewish artist called Jose Gurvich. His work is really striking and often colourful, it was well worth the hour we spent there. For lunch we had chivitos, a type of hamburger made with a thin piece of steak instead of ground beef. After finding our way home on the bus, we watched the final of an apparently very important football match, then moved to our hostel for our last night in Montevideo.
19/5 Wednesday: After a pleasant breakfast shared with a crazy Russian, we caught a bus to the bus station and from there headed to Colonia. The hostel was the most expensive we’ve stayed in thus far, and didn’t endear itself to us by charging US dollars. That’s okay in principle, except that when we wanted to pay in pesos (the local currency) we were given a less-than-favourable exchange rate. This didn’t put me in a very good mood – it totally goes against my inbuilt system of justice.
Our bus to Colonia was direct so we arrived nice and early, and found a nice hotel to stay in for the price of a hostel.
20/5 Thursday: It started out as a nice lazy day, we had a long slow breakfast and worked for a bit before heading out to find a late lunch. After eating just the right amount of meat, we wandered around and Craig and I found a cool outdoor chess set made out of soft drink bottles (I won).
21/5 Friday: Today was mostly a travel day. We got up really really early (8am hahaha) in order to catch our ferry at 9.30. It was delayed, so we arrived in Buenos Aires more than an hour late. The walk to the bus station was longer than we expected but relatively straightforward, and we booked tickets on a bus that left an hour later.
We were met at the station in Rosario by Daniela, the sister-in-law of Manuel, an ex-flatmate of Janine and Ange (need a diagram?). We’re staying with Manuel’s mum Elena, who is awesome – she’s so friendly and hospitable. We spent the evening (and by evening I mean from 10pm until 3am) with Manuel’s brother Camilo and Camilo’s best friend Federico. They took us to a couple of bars in the city and we had a great time drinking Argentinian wine and chatting. We also discovered the meaning of the phrase “te lamo” – it’s not “I love you”.
22/5 Saturday: The day was cut in half by our long sleep in, so we didn’t even leave the house until 3pm. We met up with Federico and his family and explored Rosario a bit – it’s a really pleasant city. We had some churros and a coffee then watched half of the concert in the Plaza de las Banderas – Argentina is celebrating 200 years of independence on Tuesday, so everyone has a four-day weekend. We’ll be in Buenos Aires for the actual day of celebrations, apparently it’s going to be pretty crazy.
23/5 Sunday: After another sleep-in Camilo and Dani collected us and took us to a lovely fish restaurant near the river. Our planned boat trip was foiled by the weather so we went to the shopping centre and had ice-cream. We finished the day with an excellent asado at our temporary home.