A disgruntled librarian packs it up and leaves fabulous New York City behind,
going on random adventures through South America,
while simultaneously promoting literacy
and spreading the love of the written word.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

adventures in vino

cute little guest house
hola chicos, i do so apologize for the blogging delay.  but if you are a reader of this blog, you know that my blogging schedule is sporadic at best.  disculpame.

entonces.  maybe you are wondering how our trip to mendoza was.  i hope that you are because that is what i am going to write about today and you will be sorely disappointed if you were expecting something else.  here goes:

pool within a vineyard
mendoza is awesome.  and after a few ho-hum trips to uruguay, this was a well-deserved real vacation.

our first night there we stayed in a little guest house at a vineyard.  it was super cute and we had access to a little swimming pool surrounded by plum trees and olive groves.  adorable!  and the plums were delicious.  easily the best plums i've had in my life.  and for breakfast we were served fresh peaches with our tostadas which were also quite delicious.

the only problem with staying in a cute little guest house at a vineyard is that you are very far away from civilization.  we made the mistake of staying there on a sunday and then we were sort of stranded there and the one nearby restaurant was closed.  extremely hungry, we took a bus into town.  of course, everything in town was closed too, so we wound up buying gas station snacks, and much to our dismay, the girl at the counter refused to give us any change for the bus back.   due to this moneda shortage, we found ourselves unable to collect enough change to get back.  apparently they sell a metrocard type card for the buses, but all the kioskos that sold this card were closed on sundays.  so we went from store to store begging for change.  now, when i say "begging for change," i of course do not mean that we were asking for a free handout.  i mean that we were begging people to give us coins in exchange for bills.  often we even offered to buy something.  but it took quite a while until we were able to scrape together enough change to return to our cute little guest house.

exclusive bike parking
but once the week began and we returned to the land of the living we were able to hoard our change and ride buses and dine at fine restaurants and everything was peachy keen.

so what can you do in mendoza?

you can ride bikes to wineries and drink lots o' wine.  they even have special bike parking at all the wineries!  this biking and wine combo might seem like a bad idea, as we did have a little problem with this one time in uruguay, but the biking in mendoza was lovely.  the roads are all perfectly flat, and the drivers there seem accustomed to having tipsy tourists biking from vineyard to vineyard, so it all was very safe.

wine tasting + baked brie
we visited many vineyards, and learned a lot about how wine is made.  we also were able to visit a place that grows olives and produces olive oil, as well as a place that makes various chocolates and liquors.  but our favorite place was a vineyard called tempus alba.  they had this gorgeous roof terrace where they served food and did wine tastings.  we went there twice we liked it so much.  i recommend the baked brie if you go there .... deeeee-lish.

and of course we went on exciting adventures.  one day we did a rafting / biking combo.  we spent the morning white water rafting, and then we biked through the mountains.  while we were biking a small torrential downpour began and we needed to take cover in a tree.  yes, in a tree.  we found a tree with a nice opening in it (kind of like the tree the gummy bears live in) and we hid inside it.  we were then joined by a stray dog, also looking for shelter.  let's just say that three's a crowd when you're hiding inside a tree.
biking through the mountains

once the rain let up we resumed our biking and our canine friend began running alongside me, much like people used to run alongside departing trains in the 1950s.  have i mentioned that i do not really love dogs very much?  well, this dog was freaking me out running alongside me, and then all of a sudden he ran straight into my front tire.  i have never seen a dog do this before.  thankfully i was able to swerve out of the way without falling, but i ask you ... is there any other person who could possibly have a biking accident with a kamikaze dog?  no, only yours truly.

el bolshevik rappelling
off the side of a cliff
moving on ... once the rain subsided we saw many beautiful sights on our ride back.

on another day we decided to do a hiking/rappelling/hot springs combo ... we hiked up a mountain for about 45 minutes and then we rappelled down using ropes and harnesses and things.  now, we had done this once in belize, and you may remember that i had a minor freak out and refused to walk off the side of a cliff.  well, i was much better this time.  i'm an old pro at walking off the sides of cliffs!  so we rappelled off a few cliffs and then we walked to a nearby hot springs.
a "not that hot" hot springs,
but at least there was a view



this hot springs was way classier than the ones we visited in Colon ... it was built into the side of a cliff with lovely pools where you could sit and relax and look out on the "pre-Andes."  pretty cool.  of course, most of them were not all that hot (much like Argentine cuisine) but what can you do?  it was pretty awesome all the same.

and that was our trip to mendoza.

2 comments:

  1. How romantic and exotic. I am sitting in my little house, looking at the snow through my window, and deeply envying your trip.

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  2. it gets SO hot here some days ... i wouldn't mind spending some time in a little house surrounded by snow ;)

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