Tuesday, March 31, 2009
Too much caffeine
Just a quick little note about my few days in Montevideo...I stayed a really great hostel which was small and had an amazing staff so I met some good people. The staff consists of about six guys and one girl who all had an idea to start a hostel together after backpacking through Europe a few years back. The cool thing is that they're all under 25 and have really put their hearts and souls into the running of the thing. They made me feel so welcome the minute I got there, and that combined with the friendships I made with a couple of Dutch girls, an American guy, and a Columbian guy, made for a really pleasant and heartwarming stay. We went out one night to a bar with samba dancing and one of the little blonde Dutch girls was getting so much attention she couldn't walk three feet without being grabbed by someone wanting to dance with her. I made it my duty to be her personal bodyguard and pushed our way through the crowd to our friends who were of course in the middle of the dance floor; there was no escaping the Uruguayan men who all seemed to be rocking mullets. Spent the days walking around the Old City or Ciudad Vieja and some other street markets looking at crafts, jewelry, clothing, art, and other useless Uruguayan shit. Everyone there drinks Mate, which is a tea that is brewed for days on end before actually drinking. The idea behind it is that it's a sort of communal drink which is passed around a group of friends like a hookah, but I couldn't walk down the street without seeing someone with a Mate cup and a thermos whether they were in a group or not. I went to the Uruguay versus Paraguay match on Saturday in which Paraguay was favored, but Uruguay actually dominated and won two nil. Paraguay looked really sluggish, but maybe it had to do with all the Uruguayan fans chanting something like "Paraguay means 'bitch' in Spanish". It was a really good few days there and I hope to go back someday, especially with an extended invitation from the hostel staff. I took a bus to Colonia yesterday before boarding a ferry for Buenos Aires and I cannot emphasize enough how excited I am to be here! After hearing so many great things about it I finally get to experience it for myself, and it has promise to be a longer trip than expected. The Dutch girls and I are planning on meeting up for Tango lessons, and the American guy is planning on being here around my birthday and since his is just a few days later, we might celebrate together with all his friends he made while taking Spanish classes here. Maybe it's the good night's rest I got or the couple cups of coffee I had this morning, but I feel such a real energy and a positive vibe about this place that I can hardly contain myself. Of course now that I say that I'll probably be mugged in the street or something. Knock on wood.