First off, my last post talked about Marcy going scuba diving with the sea lions which was absolutely incredible. She has pictures and video to prove it and I am infinitely jealous of her and also annoyed with the hostel. They told me it would be the same price to go snokling as it would scuba diving and the scuba place told Marcy they would have let me go on the boat for free and probably charged me way less to go snokling. Blast! Anyway my new goal is to get my PADI license before I go traveling with Marcy again because this happened in Greece as well.
So my bike ride was spent getting pushed around by the wind and getting whipped in the face with sand but it was cool to ride around the cove. This town reminds me a lot of Woods Hole in the winter. Its really dead and if you are not that into marine life, then its not really worth it.
That night we met up with Marcy´s niece´s friend Flor and her friends for dinner and to go out. They were great. We played Argentina´s version of Trivial Pursut, which translations for me and then Marcy and I taught them ¨Kings¨. Most people don´t really go out to get drunk so they ended up pretty drunk and it was a sight to see. After a while, we went over to the ¨boys¨house and taught them Kings as well. It was so much fun watching them get confused by the ¨take the little man off the glass¨rule or try to rhyme.
Then at 3 am we went dancing which was considered early for everyone but we had a bunch of free passes. The music here makes dancing and going out so enjoyable. And EVERYONE dances. They salsa and we freak. One more point to the South Americans. Although I did try to explain break dancing to a couple of them.
At 5 am, I was ready for bed and we left to get french fries. When we got back to the hostel, we thought we were going to wake up our roommate, Darcy, a 30 something Aussie who was afraid of sharks, but he was pissed drunk singing to himself. It was pretty funny as we all stubbled around until he went to bed with the stinkiest feet right next to my face. Luckily I was too tired to notice.
Then at 9 am, we woke up to Flor at our hostel and trudged to the bus station to get to Puerto Lumas for some whale watching. Flor´s dad owns one of the whale watching companies so we were able to go at a discount. He basically was the Mob boss of whales and everyone called him ¨Captain¨. He spent most of the day yelling from his perch outside of a cafe with different people coming up and saying hello. We couldn´t go on a boat until 2 so we sat around and drank coffee and tried to figure out how to see the penguins and sea lions.
A plan was formed: we would spend the night in Puerto Lumas and then join the tour from our hostel after they whale watched. And we could stay at his house. Perfect right? Except both Marcy and I were pretty scared of him because he yelled a lot and the house was under construction...oh great...And then because of the winds, there was no whale watching so our tour bus wasn´t coming. So we ended up staying the night and paying a taxi to take us to the penguins and sea lions and then back to our hostel...More on this later.
The whale watching was pretty incredible and Flor said that it was a bad day. But the whales literally come up right to the boat. What´s a bad day for Puerto Madyrn would be an outstanding day for any place in the States. I loved seeing the whales but I hate going on group tours like that and eventually got sick of a boat full of people and sick of the boat itself.
After the tour, we went to his house to take a nap. So I mentioned his house was under construction, which at first I though meant ¨oh yeah there are some paint buckets¨. Nope, his house hasn´t been built yet. There was one room with a small kitchen and a bathroom filled with laundry and a sponge bath tub, then upstairs there were two rooms with three shabby mattresses and a half of a not working bathroom. So we pulled on our jackets and slept and I wouldn´t be surprise if my bed was infested with fleas.
We wandered around the town where clearly Flor knew everyone and then bought meat for an Asado. Flor´s dad started up the BBQ and was yelling from his chair outside the pit. It was pretty frightening until his friends came over and started laughing at him. They were great. Old classic sailors who carried their knifes on their belts.
We ate a rib and a leg of a male sheep which felt like the closest I would ever come to eating a dinosaur. I wish I could have gotten a picture. Then it was off to sleep on our mattresses. I can only imagine that this was what backpacking used to be. Before hostels and Lonely Planet, you went and slept where ever.
In the morning, we left to have breakfast and had the best cereal I could ever eat. We have been having a lot of toast with dulche de leche and just having cereal with a banana felt amazing on my system. Then it was off to see the penguins and elephant seals. We saw some lamas too. I am so amazing about how comfortable they are with people. We respected their space but they just knew that we wouldn´t hurt them so they stayed really close.
We were hoping to see a Killer Whale eat an elephant seal because they are in this area as well but no such luck.
In the end, our hostel was mildly concerned when we didn´t show up for a night and I am not exactly sure we saved any money. But it made for a good story and I seriously saved on laundry.
Back in Puerto Madyrn, we ran into Duncan and Becky and made plans for New Years in Los Angeles. We met them rafting and they have a four day layover in Los Angeles in January.
Then we booked tickets for the south. Next stop is the glacier for some ice hikes and climbs. Maybe some dog sledding.