A Travellerspoint blog

Argentina - Part 3

We still here....

sunny 22 °C

Buenos Aires – Argentina part 3

Well on Monday, after much decision making (we are feckin hopeless), we decided to head up to the bus station and investigate a trip to the falls. (This is after deciding that No – we won’t go, we’ll continue chilling out here, and so started walking for 20 mins to our new hotel – It was Jim. Everytime we have a decision made (after hours of decision making) he throws a spanner in the works by changing his mind and uttering his doubts outloud). So anyway we walk 20 mins with our packs on in the heat and Jim says that maybe we should go to the falls, so grand, fine, lets go to the falls and off we bundle into a cab to the bus station. Except when we get there, he’s not so sure anymore. Hmmm 17 hours on a bus and 17 hours back – in four days?? Why that only leaves nearly one day of not being on a bus…
Hmmmmm… so another hour later we decide – Feck it – we’re staying and off we bundle back into a cab – back to the new hotel we had just left. :p

Our new hotel – the hotel Maipu – was much better, big rooms, tv, windows, private bathroom. It was great – the only problem being the smell of brasso getting up poor Jim’s nose. We hung about here for a few days making music on our laptop, and generally just wondering around town, relaxing, getting (expensive) hair cuts, eating inexpensive food and trying to get back on top of our budget – after blowing four days worth of budget in the first meal in BA. :)

On our last night, we decided to head out to a club again. We hit a different club – just around the corner from the hotel. It was great. We hit the Irish pub for some beer & popcorn, then stocked up on red wine in our room, gave ourselves a wash and donned our ‘going out clothes’. He he. The club was small, dark and cool with an absolutely FANTASTIC sound system. It was cheap enough in, beers were five pesos and despite it being slightly progmania again – we had a feckin blast. Each DJ only had an hour or so and at the end of each set the music was slowed down or stopped and each dj applauded before the next guy came on. It was all in all a brilliant night and we had such a laugh. James made some great hairy friends in the toilets and we also tried to accost the barman – who was wearing an “I heart Ireland” t shirt – to tell him “WE’RE FROM IRELAND..” (pointing at his tshirt and then at us) “IRLANDA…SOY IRLANDESA..” etc He just pouted meanly at us.. lol We were quite embarrassing.. in retrospect..

So we tripped off home at about 6am. Jim was giggly & drunk and I had to pack his bag whilst he half shouted, half drooled instructions at me.. “No only the jeans & the sleeping bag go at the end.. flip flops go at the top….”. :)

Then the harsh reality of getting up (still langered) to go to the airport at 9am. Yuck. But we did it, we finally found a taxi and got to the airport on time. The feckers charged us a fortune to get out of the country but eventually we got out. Onwards & upwards..

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Posted by squeakylee 23:59 Archived in Argentina Comments (1)

A Side Note About Travelling

by Wordsworth..

Travelling is great. You get to do things you’d always hoped you would do but hadn’t gotten around to yet. So far our highlights include helicoptering over the Grand Canyon, seeing the first fog of the year roll over San Francisco bay, acting like big kids in Universal Studios, sandboarding in the desert in Peru, climbing a million steps up to Macchu Picchu, sleeping outdoors in the amazon jungle, snorkeling with sharks, penguins, rays, huge sea turtles, sealions & fish in the scorching heat of the Galapagos Islands, clubbing in Argentina and crusin’ in a corolla in Chile with the crazy Swiss. And we’ve only just gotten to New Zealand – backpacker heaven – all geared to the great unwashed ranks of the temporarily unemployed.

The world is feckin huge though. Whilst boating around the Galapagos (albeit with green faces) it was amazing how much stuff was out there just continueing on with life, even while (shock horror) YOU’RE NOT THERE WATCHING!!! Though the islands were small, the sea is just humongous. It’s absolutely amazing and makes you realize that you’ll never in your lifetime get to see everything and that really you’re not that important or that big a deal at all! ;)

Traveling also makes you appreciate what you’ve got though. Whilst before I had always said that I wouldn’t be interested in living in Dublin (mainly because I’ll never be able to afford a gaf there), I have seen Dublin in a different light since we left. It’s not so bad. ;) Well the main things I miss would be the laughs with the gang, my family, my decks and of course – most importantly Mr. Chan’s and a bucket load of Simpsons of a Sunday evening. You do realize what bloody great mates you have though and what a bunch of funny bastards they all are. ;)

Bundling yourself around the world also makes you realize what a fussy eater you actually are, (i.e. me) and a few times now (particularly in South America – mainly due to not being able to order correctly in Spanish) I’ve had chicken sandwiches, pepperoni and weird meat soup.. eek.. We’ve also realized how bloody krap we are at making decisions – especially the simple ones. It’s unfeckinbelievable. Yesterday we left to go have some lunch at 2pm. It took us so long to wander around deciding what to eat that it was bloody dinnertime (half five) by the time we had decided what we wanted.

Jim & me have also become inseparable whilst slowing morphing into each other. EEK!! It’s pretty difficult to hang out together 24 hours a day (with little escape – particularly in South America where it is a bit ‘uncomfortable’ to potter about on your own) and not start to think the same things I reckon. I’ve started to fall asleep everywhere (a previous Jim trait), and Jim has started to eat lots of spicy food (a me trait)!
Of course there are times that we annoy the socks off each other about silly things but mostly we get on swimmingly and have a great laugh! Now if I have to sit separate from Jimbob on a bus or a plane I start to wonder if he’s ok and turn around a lot making the thumbs up sign at him. :)


That's all for now. I'll have lots more boring words of windyness again... someday...

Posted by squeakylee 00:08 Tagged tips_and_tricks Comments (1)

Argentina 2

BA Barracus

sunny 22 °C

Buenos Aires – Argentina, part 2.

We had to change hotels in order to appease the lords of our budgets. We moved to the Hotel Cocao – a bit of a dive in all honesty. The toilet was not very nice and there were lots of little flies around but we weren’t in the humour of rerouting ourselves so we hunkered down there for a few days. After dumping our stuff, we hit the Buenos Aires zoo. It was a gorgeous day and we saw lots of lovely animals. It’s a shame that the enclosures were so small. They had five huge pumas in one teeny cage with no room to run around or nothing, neither did the bears! It was terrible. The condors too had noooo room whatsoever. :(

We went for the second best tuna sandwich in the land (the first being the one with snob sauce in the Galapagos) and a beer. We walked down to the Japanese Gardens where we saw the most Coi in the land in the little Japanese river. We had some fizzy pop then trekked back home again. Pheweee all this trekking. We headed to San Telmo later where we had more fantastic food in this little gay run bar.

On Wednesday, Jimbob went to get some yummy breakfast of breadrolls, honey, apples, bananas, yoghurt and muesli. I think today we went to La Boca. We trekked for a while then hopped on a bus to LA Boca. We tripped down the colourful streets of La Boca, looked at the Tango dancers and all the lovely artwork. Then we had a fantastic 5 peso sandwich which was delicious. Wowzers all the good food coming at the end of BA.
We went to the Boca Juniors stadium and had a wander around. We went right up to the top seats and nearly had vertigo, we quickly took some pictures and held the railings as we went back down the steps. WE got lost on the way out of the stadium and were running up and down stairs for another 15 minutes looking for the exit. We got the bus through some dodgy looking areas and jumped off at the shopping streets downtown. Jimbob stopped me from buying some books again, he said where would it end – we’d end up being a traveling library.. lol.

I tried on some pants (whilst shopping) and then we headed back to the hotel. We had some Chinese food on the way back – the worst Chinese food in the land. I spoke too soon earlier. Yucky ducky. Bland a rama.

Well I think after this, we had already run out of things to do here in BA. He he.
But we had decided to stay here in town so we could go & see Tarentella & Redanka on Saturday night in Pacha. We started to sleep late and then we did boring things like laundry, interneting, drinking beer & eating unlimited free popcorn in some Irish bar. On Saturday we lounged about before heading out. As noone goes out til 1am, we had to amuse ourselves (on the cheap) until then. Even still – when we got to Pacha at 2am, the place was empty. We explored the club upstairs drinking vodka & what tasted like Jif lemon for a half hour. It has a cool outdoor area right beside the sea, which I’d say was amazing at sunrise. It was a pretty cool club. Then after our explorations, we went downstairs to the main floor – the place was RAMMED. It was unbelieveable. You could not move. It was great – we were up boogieing in our “Sunday clothes” and having a right auld larf. It was progmania but we hammed it up anywho. I heard some people murmur “wow who are those two, they can really move….”, as we faded away into the night… ;)

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Posted by squeakylee 23:52 Archived in Argentina Comments (1)

Don't Cry For Me Argentina

and other such cheesiness..

sunny 17 °C

Buenos Aires – Argentina

Money, money, money. Arrived in BA on a foggarific morning! How do pilots land in the fog! We bumped into town and checked into a lovely great big hotel room, with a TV, bathroom and a huge balcony that had great views of the lovely tree lined street & the Palacio de Congreso. It was swell. We headed off for some toasted bread & jam – Argentineans have very small breakfasts. I reckon its cause they all eat so late at night that they’re just not hungry in the morning. J After a siesta, we hit the town with some fizzy orange! Oh yeah – we know how to rock out. Then we tramped the streets of BA, it’s a very big city, with some lovely big pedestrian streets – lots of leather shops, cafes, restaurants, internet places etc etc. We headed to a restaurant that Donna (one of our NEW friends from the Galapagos he he) recommended. We had steak, pasta and a bottle of wine for maybe 28 dollars or something. Bargain Town.

The next day we checked out the famous Café Tortoni – opened nearly 200 years ago by an Italian. It was very cool, with posh waiters and tasty coffee.
We saw the Pink Palace and saw the balcony where Evita addressed the crowd, and continued on down to San Telmo. San Telmo rocks. It’s fair day on Sunday (the day we were there) and the place was chock a block with stalls of trinkets and art. They had loads of stalls selling cool old vintage stuff. Everything was cool! I’d like to go back there in the future and stock up on stuff from the past. He he. One guy had some really cool old radios. I wanted one.
So we tramped around there in the sunshine for a while, and had a few bevies outside on the street, while some band created a right ould jamboroo of Jamaican reggae sounds alongside us. Then we went for ahem..more beer.. in another funky lil place with free crisps. :) Later we ate (for a change) some pepper steak and fish in a cool little outdoor restaurant. It’s a pity the food wasn’t that great!

On Monday, we decided that we were going to stay in town for a while cos we were tired of changing location. So we walked up to the rich area of town called Recoleta. We headed to the cemetery where all the rich & “important” people of the past are buried. Anywho the graveyard itself is full of mini statues of devotion to those who died. It’s crazy. Some of the tombstones are mad as ye like. All out OTT ness. There was two huge tombstones for two Irish Lads, a guy called Browne who founded the Argentinian Navy and a priest – Father Fahy. We took some very blasphemous pictures of James and me making faces in front of some tombstones.

We checked out the cinema mall nearby and Wordsworth here (James has started calling me Wordsworth due to all the reading & writing I do) bought a book called Killing Bono. We had some delicious coffee and some apple pie in a cool café and then trekked on back to the ranch. Saw some fancy hats on the way back, James may get one but he better hurry up before we have to leave the place as I am not running around on Friday morning looking for a hat!@!!@ He he. We hit the Celta Bar later and split a pizza and some beer. Nice Pizza.

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Posted by squeakylee 22:35 Archived in Argentina Comments (0)

Oh No - Not Quito Again

sheesh

rain 17 °C

Back to Quito

After the GI's we went back to Quito and to the hostel with the TV for one more night. We decided to get some wine, popcorn and watched some shit movies. J The next day we got a crazy breakfast – we asked for a menu and instead we got the menu of the day… i.e.. soup (meat soup!!), followed by rice (n pea) and lentils and chicken, and some type of custard desert. Holy Moly. That’s some breakfast. It cost us one dollar fifty cent each.

Then off to the net café again, where we downloaded a few tracks & whittled away the hours til the airport. Our taxi driver to the airport was simultaneously driving along in rush hour traffic, and watching Platoon on a dvd player hanging from the car ceiling. I was a lil worried… to say the least! But we got there in one piece. Me & Jim had to sit separately on the plane! L Boo. We must remember to check in online for our other flights!

Posted by squeakylee 22:33 Archived in Ecuador Comments (0)

Galapagos

What will we do with the drunken sailor etc..

sunny

The Galapagos Islands!

Well seeing as I’m only getting round to typing this yonks after we were actually there, I’ll keep it short and sweet (like Lisa lol).
We arrived from Quito with the Swedish couple (we bumped into again in the airport) to Isla Santa Cruz in the Galapagos, to sweltering heat and not a cloud in the sky.
The Swedish couple had a cruise booked on The Rumba “yacht” starting the day they arrived. Unlike me & Kenny who spent four days bumming around the Island, searching for a cruise on a nice boat, whilst also lording it up on one of the most gorgeous unspoilt beaches I’ve ever seen, which was a bit of a trek to get to each day, but well worth the effort. We had little lava lizards escorting us along the pathway to the beach.
Oops I should have mentioned a bit about the animals. We read before we left for the GI’s that all the animals are big and fearless, but it doesn’t sink in until you actually come face to face with a few. Our first encounter was with a MASSIVE pelican! The thing was huge and you think to yourself,
“As I move closer to this small aircraft-sized bird, it’s going to take off scared”…
But they don’t. They just kind of look at you as if to say, “Yeah? Can I help you? Out of my beakin way, I’m fishing here!”
Everywhere we went we saw Land and/or Sea Iguanas that could and would spit at you. There were also lots of Land and Sea turtles on the islands that were so big, it was amazing, the land ones especially were absolutely HUGE (see pics below). We stumbled upon a couple giant ones bonking in the forest one day, which was pretty funny coz the guy lets out a big moan with each bonk.
Oh and Sea lions are everywhere!! They are very playful and inquisitive, but they are also smelly bastards pooing and peeing all over the place. Also there was a whole host of birds like blue/red footed boobies, lava herons, pelicans, albatrosses (he he), and lots more that I can’t remember.
Emm what else we see.. There were Sally light foot crabs, which were aptly named, as they could jump about two feat from side to side. On the last day we saw small Galapagos penguins, which were so cool and jumped into the water beside us. I should mention that every day we were woken up at half six, fed a ginormous brekfast and then put into snorkel gear. We were then led off on snorkel expeditions by our 68 year old guide! Whilst on our many many snorkeling trips, we saw and swam beside sharks, big rays and many colourful, massive fish, that looked like they had all been at the steroids.

We ended up saving a fortune by going directly to the islands and booking a boat from a tour guy there, rather than booking in Quito. Plus we got a lovely yacht with a great crew and air conditioning. Unlike the Swedes, who we bumped into a couple of days after we first got there. They SHOULD have still been on their boat, but lol the crappy boat they were booked on had no air conditioning in the cabins.
Their boat had a small fire in the engine room on the first night and they all had to abandon ship at about 5am in their underwear! They spent the next few days hassling the owner for their money back, and trying to book another boat for the remainder of their holiday! Bummer!
So anyway we got the Darwin Yacht, which had air con, a great crew and guide and a nice bunch of other passengers. One of the first girls we were talking to was a nurse from Newcastle but living in Bermuda. She asked if we knew any Irish living in Bermuda. But I couldn’t think of any.. Then we thought hold on…. lol Triggers brother lives there so we asked did she know any Bacons! Surprise surprise, she knew the Bacon in question! She referred to him as Andrew “ theatrical” Bacon. It had to be him… all the Bacons I know like a bit of drama ;o)

So the rest of the crew were mostly all geeks and a few our own age that were sound, like a Dutch guy called Uri who spoke like an American until he said words like “coool” or “smoke an a bagel” or (for Trigg) “You like your bagels REEAALLLY HAWT”

The cruise went really well. We were traveling at night and exploring islands by day seeing all these amazing animals and crazy volcanic landscapes with lots of snorkeling in between, which I have to say was the highlight of the trip. Coming face to face with a two meter long shark and watching him swim beneath your legs is pants soiling fantastic, or swimming / playing with sea loins and penguins so their little legs are flapping away right in front your mask. Lisa was a little apprehensive about the snorkeling at first as was I but after a few times out she took to it well like a fish to water :op she even went out and seen some sharks J

Lisa says - (Let me add that the first time I put on the mask, it leaked, the water went down my breathing tube and I couldn’t control my flippers. I did not like snorkellling one bit. However , everything revolved around the fecking snorkeling so I had to just get on with it. There would have been no point being on the boat without going snorkeling. I went on all the snorkeling trips (except the bug day) and gradually began to enjoy it. I even jumped in when I knew there were sharks there – my ultimate fear. And I’m really glad I did, I was so proud of myself and it was tres scary and exciting. J - LISA )

Everything was going swimmingly (pardon the pun) until the seasickness kicked in. A d then a bug went around the ship as everyone was sick at some stage throughout the 8-day cruise. I did my Exorcist impression, with an impressive display of projectile vomiting one evening in our cabin, where my lunch made its second appearance of the day. Not wanting to feel outdone, the following day Lisa did her own exorcist impression which was equally impressive as mine. Perhaps a little more impressive as it came with a strong stench of lunch – CAULIFLOWER soup!!! Now think of that nights sleep.. rocking back and forth in a tiny cabin then rocking side to side with the slight smell of diesel from the engine and STRONG smell of cauliflower from the bathroom… cozy!

We were happy to get back on dry land after the cruise and during the next few nights sleep, it still felt like we were back in the rocky cabins of the Darwin. It was such an amazing trip and we saw some fantastic things. I’d defo recommend it to everyone, but maybe just the five day cruise and make sure u stock up on sea sick tablets. J

Jimbob Seapants.

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Posted by James R 08:00 Archived in Ecuador Comments (0)

The Chongle

Scoochies Galore!

semi-overcast 25 °C

Well finally we put a bit of proper order on this yoke. The next bit is about our trip to the jungle! WOOHOO! Well what´s the point of hitting SA without releasing our alter egos Jungle Jim & Safari Susan (aka me). Be prepared for some nasty pics however. (And unfortunatley a bit of a longwinded spiel (however it will defo keep ye going til Jim gets around to writing Galapagos) and it´s drenched in endless enthusiasism & corniness! Sorry)

Quito – Day 3 (A bit of background info)

In order to get to the jungle, we first have to get to a town called Lago Agrio. The part of the jungle we’re heading to is called the Cuyabeno Reserve in the north eastern part of Ecuador – in the Amazon Basin. It’s one of 27 areas of Ecuador that is under protection but the government has still turned a blind eye to the various oil companies that are drilling for oil in this area, so really the area is still in serious danger from oil spills. There is at least one big one a year. :( booo. Anywho, first to Lago Agrio, where we stay the night and then go meet our Jungle guide the next morning. The bus journey to Lago Agrio is 8 hours normally - but our driver was a crazy loon and we got there in nearly 7 :) hehe.

The Jungle

We met our chongle guide called Lenin at 10am - he was a small smiley Ecuadorian who knew lots about the chongle and lots about brids and animals. I’d say he was a bit of a loner whilst young and would prefer to be a miniature doctor doolittle! (He was wearing a parrot t shirt for a few days). But he was very nice and his knowledge and personality were great. :)

We bundled into a small yellow collectivo, and only drove around the corner where we had to get a punctured tyre repaired. Then we started off on our way to Quito airport, where we picked up another Swedish couple. I chatted in the front with the driver & Lenin and made chit chat about Ecuador and whether or not the alligators in the river in the chongle would eat me. He said no. :/ Then we got another puncture.

At the entrance to the Cuyabeno Wildlife Reserve we hopped into a motorized dugout canoe (pilotted by two native Syona tribespeople) and we started off on our three hour canoe journey down the Cuyabeno River. :)
The journey was amazing. The river at the start was narrow enough and lots of palm trees, spaghetti trees, and tonnes of other rich greenery trees overhung the river on the way. We spotted Snake birds, woolly monkeys, parrots, yellow-handed titty monkeys, toucans and other stuff along the way. The river got wider the further we went into the jungle, the water got less brown, and the animals got more exotic. :) At the risk of sounding very cheesy - It was amazing and we loved every minute of it.

We got to our rainforesturs campsite just as it was getting dark. This made our first night in the chongle all the more scary imo. Our "beds" were mattresses surrounded by net which were perched on an open wooden area on stilts. There were no doors or anything but it had a roof. We had to try manouvre ourselves into them in the dark with the krappest torches in the land. It was scary and hilarious. Hiscarious in fact.

So we headed to the ‘kitchen’ area for dinner. All the areas are just wooden floors on stilts with roofs (rooves?)
We were fed a feast (I´ve never been fed better!!!! wink wink)and then there was nothing else to do but go to bed! Meself & Jimbob then headed to our ‘love shack’, covered ourselves in anti mosquito juice and jumped between the zipped areas and scowered the inner area with the torches. When the coast seemed clear of woogies, we sat in the dark listening to the sounds of the chongle. I was scared out of my head. Everything in the jungle squeaks, slithers, glows, clicks, rattles, squawks, forages around, walks underneath the house, and generally acts all schoochily and scary. James fell asleep straight away but I couldn’t for yohnkers and had to stick some tissue in my ears to block out the crazy loud sounds of the chongle. In the middle of the night, it started to rain and it started to drip onto my head while I was half asleep. :P

THE CHONGLE – Day 2 – AKA MY BIRTHDAY

I woke up mega early and just hung around listening to the sounds of the chongle again. It was amazing. Then James gave me a cool original one-of-a-kind jungle birthday card!! ;)
We had a huge breakfast of fruit, yoghurt and granola for our first course at breakfast. Then we had yummy bread things and then fired eggs.
Then into the canoe. We picked up a lady from the Syona tribe who was going to be our guide during our three hour walk in the chongle. We saw a big tarantula, crickets, a small snake, a frog/toad, the trees with medicine stuff. There was schoochies a plenty too. Lots of Application of mosquito stuff, whacking back mosquitoes, tasting tree bark (James tasted citrus ants from a tree and then we tasted grubs – which tasted like nothing). After a while more trek a dekk decking we headed back to the campsite for a bit of a wash. (To wash the ticks, sweat & scoochies off). Jimbob & co went swimming in the brown river but I decided to have an auld shower in jungle rainwater. It was one of the best showers I have had since leaving home – (see picture) (ofthe shower only not me in it). :p

After lunch it was off out in the canoe again to do a small spot of piranha fishing. This was only for a few minutes. I didn’t even get a baited rod. He he. The tribeswoman caught a piranha, we spotted some more birds and animals, (take it for granted that we spot birds and monkeys every time we’re out in the canoe) and then headed to the tribeswoman’s village/house to ultimately see her make some bread out of the yucca plant (like a potatoe).

When we got there though, she told us that they had a baby jaguar in their house. Her son had found him in the jungle in Peru (without his mawm) and had brought him home (by canoe – no customs – mental note people). The little thing was so cute (*see picture) and was still a bit of an animal, as he was stalking the chickens around the garden. Then we were herded into the ‘kitchen’ to see the woman ( I say the woman – but we did all the hard grating work ;) ).
a few knuckles were grated into the mixture (mine & Rolys’).

It was pitch dark when we got into the canoe and we were wondering how the hell the canoe’ists were going to get us home. Lenin got out his ultra powerful torch and started to scan the water and surrounding trees/plants/green stuff like a lighthouse and we chugged our way home.

Before dinner, we donned our scoochie protection suits and our torches. Me & James had the same rainjackets on, the same torches and the sameish caps on. We looked like spas. Couple that with the fact that our torches were purchased in Peru, cost 3 dollars each and were powered by DUVVACELL Batteries and you may begin to understand why I couldn’t stop laughing. That is until a moth flew into my mouth, and bats started to whip by us in the dark.. EEEK. I wasn’t too much of a fan of the night walk –and I’ll tell ye that for F*ck all. ;) Particularly when Lenin brought us down to where we were sleeping and showed us all the tarantulas that come out at night. Cries of “AAAAAAAAAAAAAAR|RRRRRRRRRRRRRGGGGGGGGGGGH – I’m not f*ckin sleepin here” echoed throughout the jungle, as he showed us one giant tarantula 3 feet from our bed, and various others scattered up on the roof.

After the walk (thankfully it was short enough), we cracked open the 6 beers I had brought for my birthday celebration. Unfortunately nobody wanted to have to get up in the middle of the night to go to the toilet so not much of the beer was drank!! Lol. We had another mammoth dinner of tuna spaghetti and then Lenin brought out some bread rolls covered in warm chocolate sauce for the birthday girl. YeEhaa – it was delicious. Then the group cringely attempted to sing me happy birthday in a variety of different languages. It was gas, I made them stop pretty soon. ;) Bedtime – Terry the Tarantula didn’t bother us, thank god, and it didn’t rain on my face so bedtime was slightly better than last night. :)

THE CHONGLE – Day 3

Up and atom. It was time for another walk in the jungle. We all reluctantly piled into the canoe and much to our surprise (and delight) we were brought piranha fishing instead. Woohooo. The Swedes caught lots of piranhas and me & jimbob got none. Stefan caught a massive yoke – I think as big as piranhas get tbh. All was lost for the Irish - that is until Jimbob saved the day at the last minute with a gnashing fine catch. We took some pictures of the win (aka me & jim looking like farmers again) below.

Afterwards we chugged along into the flooded forest – which looked like a scene out of Lemony Snicketts imo. The water was black, very still and the tops of trees were creeping out of the water. It was eerie and beautiful. (see pics). This is where the anacondas hang out apparently, but we didn’t see any. :(

Lunch was a picnic of kidney beans, rice & tuna along with some fizzy pop and huge chunks of watermelon. Then we all had to wee in the forest and get back into the canoe.

We were chaperoned to a different type of forest and off we trekked on our jungle walk again for another 3 hours. The tribeswoman showed us more medicinal trees/herbs/plants and we saw a few more monkeys. We walked and walked and then finally got back to where we bloody started. Our canoeist then brought us back to the lake where we were able to jump into the lake if we liked. Howanever I had only the top of my bikini on and in order to put the bottoms on I would have had to stand up in the rocky canoe, put on the poncho and swap the pants in front of evferyone. So I decided to give it a miss, plus I’m always slightly slow to jump into water that I cannot see through. The Swedish dude jumped in and when he was on his way out of the boat, the jungle guide said “oh is that a tick on him”.. WEHEHHEHELLLLLL am I glad I didn’t jump in, to say the least! :0 ticks!!! What the !!! 

So anywhooooo, we canooed back from the lake slowly and on the way back it became pitchy mcpitch black. So once we hit the river jungle Lenin put the hunmoungous torch on and we went a alligator spottin’. We could see the red eyes of the caiman alligators and when we zoomed up a bit close to one of them, he popped into the river.. EEEEKKK. Get the boat out of here capn’!! I was afraid he might try and climb in! eek.

After dinner we we had some agua oriente – which is juice from the sugar cane plant (pure alcohol) mixed with cinnamon, lemon and hot water, had a chit chat and went off to bed. I fell straight asleep as I was pooped, but I did wake up at about 3 or so when the rain was spitting on my head again and I needed to go to the toilet. Sooooo I had to wake up jimbob and ask him to come to the toilet with me and he was noooootttt happy. He was grumpy bear jim and I was a lil scared. But in truth more scared of the woogies and scoochies and animals outside of the tent if I went to the toilet on my own, than grumpy jim´s mood. So we donned ourjackets and our runners and off we went but when we got back to the tent we had zip trouble doing up our sleeping quarters again and I thought jim´s head was going to explode with the anger! He he :)

The Chongle – Day 4

Well today we were due to get up at 5am and listen to the sounds of the jungle waking up, but it was pissing rain! So we had a bit of a lie in (6.30am) and then went off in our ponchos in the canoe to spot some birds. It was all a bit half hearted imo, but many birds were spotted. Then back for breakfast (minus huevos – uh oh) and it was time for the smelly foursome to have a rain-shower.

We packed our stuff, bought some trinkets from the chongle people and all piled into the canoe for the 3 hour journey back down the river that leads out of the Reserve. Then we had our last supper of spaghetti tuna and piled onto a local bus for the journey back to Lago Agrio.

In Lago Agrio, we ate and then piled onto the night bus for Quito. Not a comfy bus and there was mucho passport checks, but we finally arrived in Quito about 5am.

The jungle was the best experience ever (cheesy American sentamentalism alert). I’m now off to buy an “I survived the jungle” t shirt. ;)
Rosy & Jim.

parrot
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cuyabeno river
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sun
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river
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wooly monkeys
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another monkey
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me & jim
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jungle jim
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safari susan
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a tarantula
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a big tree
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centipede
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jim
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syona tribeswoman
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snake
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the shower
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the bedroom
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the kitchen
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jim in the river
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the path more travelled
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me & jim
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jim
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me
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reflection of the sun in the river
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jim piranha fishing
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a piranha
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lenin & the jaguar
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lenin, jim & the jaguar
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a toucan
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what the toucan looks like in the book
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me & jim
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jim
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stefan the swede
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jim´s piranha
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me trying me best
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jim eating a sardine
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another big tree
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jim being a melon, i mean eating.. eating a melon
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the tribeswoman makingme a backpack out of reeds
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me wearing said backpack
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Posted by squeakylee 10:29 Archived in Ecuador Tagged ecotourism Comments (6)

Quito – Ecuador

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In the words of an old pantsy trancer – ECUADOR! (pfftt)
Up and atom for our VERY EXPENSIVE FREE Breakfast then off to the airport – where we were mega early (thanks to me ;) ). We bought some trinkets, ate some donuts, and it wasn’t long before we were landing in Quito, Ecuador. Ecuador has incurred dollarization, which means it’s a lil more expensive than Peru.
Our taxi driver from the airport was blind we reckon as he nearly killed us once and barely avoided tonnes of other small collisions. It was lashing rain all day here in Quito, so we hunkered down in our crusty hostel room (which has a poster of Mickey mouse on one wall and a barely comprehensible message for “Mr & Mrs User” on the other wall – see pic) for a couple of hours and did our laundry. Then headed out onto the streets for some Thai Food. There was trunty loads of people out there, just hanging around on street corners. We unwittingly had our backs turned on an open off licence and off we trotted down the road in the other direction in search of some cheap hooch. He he. We stumbled across some cheap hoochies alright on the way back for the cheap hooch. Then we wrote this. wowzers – the excitement of the day has no end!

Quito – Day 2
After a humoungous breakfast of milkshakes, coffees, eggs, toast, chips, and whatever the hell else we got for 2 dollars each, we bungled off in the rain to book our jungle tour with rainforest turs. It was 160 dollars each and afterwards we spend the rest of the day in Papaya.net doing our blog – putting up pictures and writing enough info to bore the socks off a monk. Later we got cheap pizzas and some wine and watched some wine and watched some Family Guy on our laptop.

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Posted by James R 12:22 Archived in Ecuador Comments (2)

Back to Lima

sunny

Lima
Up at 6 and off to Cuzco Airport for our flight to Lima, which was eventless and comfortable and quick.  We had yummy eggs on toast for brekkie in the airport so we stashed our ‘inflight snacks’ for later. (Feckin Gringos). We shared a shuttle bus into Miraflores and were able to get a good little free tour of Lima into the bargain. We knocked into the Inka Lodge (35 dollars!!!) and pottered about a bit, then headed out for some lunch and to get Jimbob some new flip flops.
We had some lunch in a lil restaurant in the Larcomar shopping center - it was yum! We had some odd eggs & pepper and bruschetta as well as some burgers and salad. Then as we got up to leave, I pulled my chair out a little too far and it seemed like it may have gotten in the way of some guy behind me. I said ‘oops sorry, very sorry’ and he looked around and said ‘it’s ok’ or something, and when I looked again at him, wasn’t it only feckin Sean Skelly!! I couldn’t believe it – feckin gas! All the way to Peru to meet Seanyboy from down the road. So we had an auld beer with Sean before he went off to the airport. He was on his way home to get his apartment stuff sorted.
So we bid him adieau and headed off on a hunt for a back pack for me and some malaria tablets and some other bits and bobs in the supermarket.
We headed back to the hostel and hung out, showered with a lovely hot hot hot shower!
Ah the small thrills of life on the road – cheetos, clean warm socks, hot showers, Inka Kola & cheap wine. 

Posted by James R 13:07 Archived in Peru Comments (0)

Macchu Picchu - Peru

sunny

Oh My God! I hope never to have to go up stairs again. The journey up ze mountain to Macchu Picchu was about 20,000 steps - all big, all higgledy piggledy and all painful. The first 15 mins wasn’t too bad, (yeah right!) after that it was just horrible!
We left our rooms about 5.15am (what the %*ck!!) and wandered up to the start of the steps in the dark. Then we climbed up about 3 sets of ‘the stairs’ and my head was nearly about to pop off! The Swiss lads were bombing along but it was a ‘smidgeon’ too fast for me, so we sent them on ahead. Trudge Trudge Trudge – how can I emphasise how painful it was!
We got to Macchu Picchu about 6.45am. It was amazing. The view was out of this world! We were so high up! The stonework itself was cool! It’s unbelievable how they built it on top of such a high mountain. Apparently if you look at Macchu Picchu sideways, it looks like an indian’s head! It was hella cool. Then I lost the others and went a hiking up another two million miles up into the blue! Eek! Eventually I copped that I had gone too high and made my way back down again to the exit, where I found ze others at ze bar.
We had lunch and then went for a dip in the stinky brown backpacker waters of the Aguas Calientes Thermal baths.
Then back on the train to Cuzco and back to the Gringos shack for some yummy food, then said goodbye to the lads and headed to the sack!

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lol
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Posted by James R 13:03 Archived in Peru Comments (1)

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