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Trip South America & The Cape South America & The Cape 25.01.2013 - 15.02.2013   Morning All I've changed the format a little, and have moved the main trip... Steve Prestidge (GB)
Argentinien Brasilien Chile Falklandinseln Grossbritannien Uruguay

South America & The Cape

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Morning All

I've changed the format a little, and have moved the main trip Blog, to entry for 12th January, and will simply do the updates here on the main Blog.

Please still fell free to comment though, we really wanna see those comments....

Updated Friday 8th, 12.00 on board, 15.00 UK, in the Chilean Fjords.....

Since the last update we've had a lot going on on board, mainly.

After leaving the penguins at Peurto Madryn, we headed to Stanley on The Falkland Islands. We were warned by the captain that the weather on the way down there and possibly when we got there may mean the call to Stanley may not happen.

Stanley has no mooring for the ship, and disembarking and returning to the ship is done by tender. The ship anchors in the bay, and you step of it onto the tender craft the ship has, and these take you ashore.

On the way there, we hit a bit of a storm and had waves of 15/18 foot, some nice video shots, made the ship a bit rocky, but nothing too serious.

However when we got to Stanley, winds of 70 knots, waves of 8/10 foot meant it too dangerous to use and load the tenders so the landing at Stanley was aborted. Bet the Argies wished it was us visiting them in 82 and not the British Army.....

So we made sail, around the North of the islands, due to the storm to the south which the ship had been told to avoid, and had a further day at sea.

More quizzes, and big scores, although never going to win one as theres a team on board that answer and then afterwards moan about all the questions?

We cruised down to Cape Horn, and got very close to the land at the End of the World, can say that now we've been to the end of the world and back again. Some great pictures, I'm sure you will get to see them all.

Wednesday 6th February, we spent the day at Ushuaia, which was our last call at Argentina, and the town that is the furthest south in the world. Here we took an old slave train to the bottom of Argentina, obviously not a slave train now.

This was the first place that there was a feeling of underlying ill feeling about 1982, a big memorial and a number of Malvinas are still ours posters.

We took some pictures and will post soon. So we have left Argentine water, so here's a poser for you, what's the difference between the Argentine navy and a Dyson? (answer at the end of the update)

After leaving Ushuaia we started to cruise down Glacier Alley. We passed a number but the main ones were Holanda, Italia, Francia, Alemania and Romanche. They were stunning, probably even better than Alaska.

Thursday 7th we stopped again this time our first call in Chile. We stopped at a place called Punta Arenas, where we took a chair lift up the Andes and then hiked down. I am amazed by the obnoxiousness of some people (actually mostly American) complaining after hiking down of the lack of wildlife they saw!! With the noise they were making I'd be amazed if there were any wildlife left in Chile!!

We spent some time in town, and then off on another trip to see a penguin colony. More penguin pictures......

Food consumption has been huge, alcohol consumption too much, and we did treat ourselves the other night to our first meal in one of main restaurants, Sabatini's the Italiain restaurant on board. Amazing food, great service (and entertainment) and as much as you could eat....

So to today, Friday 8th. We're in the Chilean Fjords again, with a visit to one of the biggest glaciers, Amalia. Kaz is off having a massage, I'm updating blog, drink and entertainment on board and tonight we visit the Crown Grill for a steak.

Bit cloudy today, soundtrack for the day "Food Glorious Food"

Oh yeah, that poser earlier about the difference between the Argentine Navy and a Dyson.

One sucks without failing, the other.....................

Is the Argentine Navy

Means of Transport
Boot Auto Zu Fuss Flugzeug
  • 12Jan 2013

    1 Blogging 12.01.2013

     

    Beschreibung

    Thanks for logging on and, if you are, for following the adventures that we're sure to have when we visit the South American continent. This will mean that I've visited them all. Well the main five 'original' ones that everyone is aware of. Have done America, Africa, Asia and we've all done Europe, so just South America to tick off. Actually if I think of the other two that are talked

    as continents, I've been lucky enough to do Oceania (Australia) and it's possible to visit Antarctica on this trip, if the lottery numbers come up between now and departure.
    I'm hoping that I will be able to make the blog entertaining, informative, interesting and most important 'Up to Date'.
    Below the map you will find waypoints, and entries that are added to as we build up to, and then are on the trip. You're able to, and it would be great if you could, add comments, although you also need to be logged onto Facebook to do this.
    As much as a deserved holiday, the trip also coincides with my birthday, apparently an important one, so I'm sure we will be spoiling ourselves whilst away (well spoiling me anyway!!!)
    We are flying into Rio first off, before flying on to Buenos Aires for a couple of days before boarding the Star Princess to cruise down the Argentinian coast, calling in at the Falklands, before rounding the Cape, to cruise back up the Chilean Fjords to Valparaiso where we will disembark and then travel in land to Santiago for a couple of days before the flight home.
    Planning to see in Rio the Cristo Redenter, the big statue overlooking Rio (maybe mean visit rather than see as you can see it from near enough anywhere(in Rio of course)) and the beaches, especially Copacabana and Ipanema. Cue Barry Manilow and Frank Sinatra sound tracks.
    In Buenos Aires, I'm sure we will check out where Eva Duarte Peron lived (see educational), until she turned into Madonna in Evita (and entertaining). The weather looks as though its going to be warm, so plenty of strolling down avendias and sitting at bars. maybe even taking in a little Argentinian Tango (where we can play spot the Brit at the end of the dance shouting '7').
    From here we board our cruise. We leave Buenos Aires on the Star Princess. Now if you want to you can click on the link below to see what's on board, and in store for us.
    http://www.princess.com/video/dvd/GoldenGrandStarCE09.html
    The deck plan for our ship can be found here, http://www.princess.com/learn/ships/tp/index.html
    I immediately looked for bars and casino, Kaz checked out the Gym & Spa.
    I've also worked out already that whilst we are away, we are at sea, and not docked and on excursions, for both Spurs league games, COYS, so the first job will be to check out how I can watch the games whilst on board.....
    Once we set sail (there's no sails but you know what I mean), we first call at Montevideo where I'm visiting the World Cup museum, after all it did all start there, and then we have a number of stops where we're going to see wildlife reserves, and along the way expect to see sea-lions, elephant seals, whales and of course loads of penguins.

    Sure there will be loads of pictures to upload, and the odd video, and I'm working on the sound track, but already have Sail Away (David Gray), Sea Cruise (Frankie Ford), Rio (Duran Duran) and Dancin' In The Streets (Jagger & Bowie)

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  • 13Jan 2013

    2 Prep for the trip 13.01.2013 Grossbritannien —

    Ratcliffe Culey, Grossbritannien

    Beschreibung

    New wardrobe needed, and acquired.
    If ever an excuse was needed to go shopping, Kaz only needs the slightest one.
    So apart from the new Spurs Third Kit, clothing is almost purchased and packed, which will mean the next ten days at home will be spent in the same t-shirt, jeans etc.., and any change of clothing necessary will be into shirts and suits.

    I think this is the first time I've ever owned four pairs of jeans and so many casual shirts, is this what happens when you hit 50.

    I've also found an instant way to become a multi-millionaire, move to Chile. There are over 700 Peso to the £1, just £1,500 makes you an instant millionaire.

    Not long now till we leave, although once on the cruise we might be spending more time on the ship than first thought due to the unsettled situations in the Falklands at present, although doesnt look like too much like a hardship (no pun intended!!) if you check out the video link above.

    Weather today, in Tamworth, 2C, and bright, with snow forecast.

    Todays soundtrack, Pet Shop Boys 'S-H-O-P-P-I-N-G"

    SP

    Kommentare

  • 17Jan 2013

    3 8 Days to go 17.01.2013 Grossbritannien —

    Ratcliffe Culey, Grossbritannien

    Beschreibung

    A week today and that’s me finished work for three and a half weeks.

    Well when I say ‘finished’ I probably mean not going into the office, but checking regularly to make sure that the little red light isn’t blinking on the BlackBerry. Is it me or does that red light haunt all of us. I think the reason it’s a red light is because we all prostitute ourselves out to work, which is our Pimp (that’s deep!!!)

    Anyway, just four more working days, well when I say ‘Working Days’, OK you get the theme of this, I know.

    Had an email through last night from ‘Princess Cruises’ looking to build the anticipation and excitement, although one thing caught my eye and worried me a little. You tell me if I’m being a little over cautious and a tad paranoid.

    This is previewing some of the Night-time Entertainment on board whilst away, including in which is:

    BRITISH INVASION: A musical journey of the greatest songs and artists who emerged from the UK and travelled 'across the pond' to the US.

    Now sounds OK, usually the standard is pretty good as well, so will probably be worth a watch.

    BUT

    This is a cruise that is moving from Argentina to The Falklands, and then back to Argentina, is the title really appropriate!!!
    Anyway, off to work.

    Weather Today : Solihull -0.5C, dull (it always is), lots of snow forecast.

    Today’s Soundtrack: Dizzee Rascal, “Off To Work”

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  • 21Jan 2013

    4 Crazy Weather 21.01.2013

     

    Beschreibung

    Just a day until my birthday.

    What crazy weather this is we are having, not sure I've seen snow this heavy for years, and the roads around us have been brought to a stand still.

    Went out to walk the dogs yesterday, and just outside the village someone had managed to put their car into a ditch, on a bit of road we wouldn't normally regards as dangerous. Meant that Libbi decided to make the journey home a day earlier than planned, shame, she missed her Sunday Roast, but wise, and she got back OK.

    Actually very wise because I think we've had the same amount of snow fall again last night.

    Saw Django Unchained at the weekend, great film.

    Just a few days now until we go, hopefully having the snow this weekend will mean come Friday, Heathrow is back to normal......

    Weather today, Ratcliffe -1.5C, heavy snow on ground, looks like there could be more

    Todays sound track: "The Freeze', Spandau Ballett

    Fotos & Videos

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  • 22Jan 2013

    5 Birthday 22.01.2013

     

    Beschreibung

    Let it all begin

    So it's here, the big 50!

    Felt no different to any other day to be honest, up early, shave, shower and ... Then dressed and off to work.

    Guess it is just another day after all. Apparently I was born at one minute past midnight on 22nd January all those years ago, so in theory if Mum had pushed harder earlier, could have had my birthday yesterday.

    A few cards, but no post for three days now due to the weather so I'm sure all the cheques and cash have been caught up in the backlog.

    Just three days until the holiday, I'm really starting to look forward to it, although still tons to get done at work, and the stress of Kaz packing yet to come

    Can hear already the cries off "Don't stress me, don't stress me" echoing round the house

    Today's weather -5.5C
    Today's soundtrack(s) : "Shiver", By Coldplay (see what I done there, clever huh) and "Happy Birthday to Me"

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  • 23Jan 2013

    6 Last Day of Work 23.01.2013

     

    Beschreibung

    Last day of work, well last day of going to work officially, so last day of going to office, will probably though go into the office tomorrow of Friday to drop stuff off, so probably not really the last day of work, although you know what I mean!

    Yesterday was interesting, no post so only a couple of cards to open, although all my family know I'm crap at sending cards anyway, so hopefully they didn't bother either (doesn't mean I don't love you all).

    Still looks like a bleak winter scene outside, I'm on a train at the moment on way down to London and everything is white, everywhere. Not that I care too much, as long as Heathrow is open on Friday, and we can get there, that's all that matters.

    Big news, the temperature hit Zero Degrees as I pulled into Nuneaton this morning, first time that high since Thursday last week, so maybe the thaw will start, and then the floods......

    Quiet night last night, just a bottle of wine whilst watched Villa miss out on a Cup Final place as they were beaten by a Fourth Division team (let's tell it how it is), sorry in-laws......

    Weather today, Zero Degrees

    Today's soundtrack:  "Holiday" by Madonna

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  • 24Jan 2013

    7 Packing.... 24.01.2013

     

    Beschreibung

    It's that time

    Will I need three pairs of trousers or four? How many shirts are needed for posh dining on the boat? Can I get away with just ten pairs of boxers for a three week holiday (turn them inside out and/or back to front are always alternative wear modes!!)

    And whats this fascination that women have with trying everything on before you pack it. "Yes that's a nice top", "no those shorts are fine", "I preferred the first pair of socks to the second one", why ask me I've got no dress sense you should see what I'm wearing now!!

    Anyhow, it's 7 pm, the work laptop has just been turned off, there's a cheeky glass of red by the computer, probably not the last one tonight, and I feel the holiday eve night custom of a takeaway happening very soon.

    Good news is the snow is thawing, so journey to Heathrow tomorrow, and then flights from, should be OK.

    I know you'll all be relieved to hear that.

    Weather today, 1C, above Zero..... In Ratclifffe

    In Rio, it's 27C (but there's storms and rain predicted for Saturday & Sunday!!!!)

    Note to self, check cases again for suitable attire....

    Tonights soundtrack, as a result of the above news, "Umbrella"

    Kommentare

  • 25Jan 2013

    8 Leaving On A Jet Plane... 25.01.2013

    Hounslow

    Beschreibung

    18.00

    Arrived at Heathrow, bags dropped off (got through the weighing OK), through customs OK and now sat in a relaxing per flight lounge, where the beer and food is free!!!

    Well food is peanuts and crisps, oh and olives, I'm sure more food will be out soon,and it's packed and we've ended up sitting next to a German Guy who wants to share his conversation on the mobile with the whole lounge, which is even louder when your the next table.

    A couple of Stella's and I might need to have a word.....


    14.00

    Off to Heathrow to catch the overnight flight to Rio

    All my bags are packed,
    I'm ready to go......

    At bang on two, when we planned to, targeted to, a heavy, brief snow flurry at Ratcliffe.

    Finished now at 2.30, and we're on our way to Heathrow.

    Packing finished, Steve 1 bag, 15 Kilos, Kaz 3 bags 48 Kilos.....

    Need I say more, bet it's my one that goes missing.

    Will update more during the rest of the day

    Weather in Ratcliffe, 1C, and cloudy...

    Soundtrack, "Airport" by The Motors

    Kommentare

  • 25Jan 2013

    9 Flying..... 25.01.2013

     

    Beschreibung

    21.20 hour after take off

    I said I'd see if I could make the site educational well here's my first piece of solid educational advice. Never fly with TAM

    Now in their defence it's probably not all their fault.

    The turbulence would have hit any plane, and actually was a bit of an adventure.

    The seats are cramped though, and we have a three in the middle behind a four in the middle. In its self not a problem apart from they haven't thought about your TV screens which are on the back of the four chairs in front

    So I'm looking at half of the right side of one screen and half the left side of the other, which is weird if your watching the same thing on both screens, but if not the same, impossible....
     
    To remedy this you sit with your head at a 45/50 degree angle to the right, so you're  just watching one screen.

    Unless you've got the w*nker in front of me who keeps slamming his chair back as far as possible, so not only do I need to lean at 45/50 degrees to the right but also dip by a foot to get a decent view.

    This pratt is so far back, he's head is almost in my lap, and that's not a fantasy.

    Couple this with the guy off to the right just in front who has decided I need to listen to his film through his shit speakers, as I can't watch my own, twat, and the guy level with me to the right who has decided he needs his airplane socks on, so has taken his trainers off so I've got the smell of feet. Arsehole!

    And, because of the turbulence they've not served food and alcohol to part of the plane, NOT MiNE....  Only ten hours of the flight left.

    Feel a visit to the loo coming on soon with a few hefty falls and smacks to speaker face and laid back w*nker whilst a good accidental stamp on cheese toes should get the messages through.........

    RED WINE NOW


    7.32 UK time and starting descent.

    The wine arrived as did airplane sleep. You know that sleep that is sleep but doesn't feel like it.

    Anyway landing in about 20 minutes which means the tosser in front will have to place his chair in the upright position. Yeah the right up his arse position!!

    Start dark in Rio, 2 hours behind UK, but apparently nice weather and, wait for it, 24C

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  • 26Jan 2013

    10 Rio, Finding Our Way About.... 26.01.2013 Brasilien —

    Santo Cristo, Rio de Janeiro, Brasilien

    Beschreibung

    Saturday 26th January, 9.32 am UK time, 7.32 here in Rio

    We've checked in to the hotel, although room not quite ready yet, think they need to wake the previous guests up, before we can get in.

    However, breakfast is on the 5th floor of the hotel and we're drinking coffee and juice, about to have some food, watching the sun come up over the Copacabana Beach....

    Not Bad!!!

    12.45 UK time, 10.45 in Rio

    We've booked into our room, views from the room attached below the map.

    Weather its 26C, humid, and according to the weather feeling more like 35C....

    Todays soundtrack, "Everyone's Free (To Wear Sunscreen)" by Baz Luhrmann...

    Shorts on, off to the beach

    Update Sunday Morning......

    So we left the hotel yesterday and wandered along Copacabana beach, actually in the direction of the photo we have posted. God it was hot and humid, temperature was 34C!!

    Now Brazil, and especially Copacabana and Ipanema have reputations for being full with Beautiful People.

    What a load of b*llsh*t!

    Some of the sites were quite worrying, very old, very overweight, very skimpily dressed men and women, who frankly, should know better. And it seems that 'budgie smugglers' are worn by each example of the above.....

    We walked all the way along this beach and then did turn onto Ipanema beach, and halfway down that until the mandatory stop for a couple of beers and a bit of people watching. Well I had the beers, Kaz went for the Coconut, as in the picture attached.

    Ipanema has part of the beach that is predominately visited by the gay community in Rio, and they're not difficult to spot.

    Cut through town on the way back.

    At 5 we popped up to the hotel pool bar on the roof, stayed there a few hours watching the sun set and loads of albatrosses, or is it albatrossi, gliding above us.

    Dinner in the restaurant here, we shared a grill fish stew.

    p.s. NO, I repeat, NO, NOT ONE, tat shop anywhere. you who know Kaz will know what a dilemma that is creating for her!!!!

    And so today's plans........

    Sunday 27th January

    Bit cloudy this morning, hopefully will burn off during the day.

    Today with booked a Full Day Tour which will drive through Tijuca Forest to the top of Corcovado Hill where we will visit the Christ the Redeemer Statue that looks over Rio. From here we travel to Sugar Loaf Mountain, taking a cable car up here, and also take in the Maracana Stadium, Sambadrome and down town Rio.

    Weather outside, 22C and cloudy.

    Today's soundtrack, "Rio", Duran Duran

    Fotos & Videos

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  • 27Jan 2013

    11 Seeing the Sites in Rio 27.01.2013

     

    Beschreibung

    Sunday 27th January

    Bit cloudy this morning, hopefully will burn off during the day.

    Today with booked a Full Day Tour which will drive through Tijuca Forest to the top of Corcovado Hill where we will visit the Christ the Redeemer Statue that looks over Rio. From here we travel to Sugar Loaf Mountain, taking a cable car up here, and also take in the Maracana Stadium, Sambadrome and down town Rio.

    Weather outside, 22C and cloudy.

    Today's soundtrack, "Rio", Duran Duran

    Morning All

    I've changed the format a little, and have moved the main trip Blog, to entry for 12th January, and will simply do the updates here on the main Blog.

    Please still fell free to comment though, we really wanna see those comments, although helps if you read the Blog first (Marcus!!!).

    Updated Monday 28th January 9.00 am in Rio (11.00 in UK)

    Sunday 27th January.......

    First drove to the bottom of Corcovado mountain to take the tram up through the forest to the site where the statue is.  It was a little cloudy today but got to see ok as the pictures show.

    Very crowded, though.

    I've often watched those wildlife program's where you get animals either fighting over a carcassNdola trampling over each other in a stampede and thought that that's a true sign we've evolved, and then you visit a place where everyone wants their picture taken in the best place, and realise we haven't!!!

    Had a word with Cristo to see if he could do anything to help Villa for those back home this season, he just smiled.

    From the statue, back down the tram and through the forest, and a trip across town to the Cathedral. On every short city break, or City tour, we nearly always end up in a Cathedral. What an ugly and weird building, although actually inside I thought fairly basic and how these places should be. Loved the fact that they were also advertising "Cathedral FM 106.8" where I guess they play hits like "Jesus He Knows Me", or anything by Genesis and "Blasphemous Rumours", Depeche Mode, or "Angels" by Robbie Williams, might give a prize to the best named sound you can hear on this station, in the comments by anyone....

    Lunch was followed by trip to Sugar Loaf Mountain, for the views again, and more photo opportunities.

    Apparently "Sugar Loaf" is named for its unique shape that resembles a traditional form of refined sugar used in the 19th century, which is a tall granite cone with a circular top, it reaches up some 1,299 feet, or 396metres.

    The cable cars didn't feel the most secure, and again, getting in them was like fighting over a dead zebra.

    Our guide ended the day by asking us to help with his English homework. He had a work book which was clearly American English that he wanted to discuss a few phrases from. We've helped I think. The next English people on his tour will be greeted with 'You alright Babs', 'What's the matter Duck' and 'Alright Guvnor'

    After the trips, Kaz and I stopped off in the Copacabana Palace Hotel, which is next door to us. This is the place that started the fascination with here, and was the location for Fred & Ginger's 1933 film "Flying Down to Rio".

    We were chatting to a nice old lady, who was telling us a little bit about the place. She used to be a showgirl, although that was thirty years ago, when they had a show, but as far as she's concerned, the disco that's there now, that's not for her. She did seem a bit drunk to be honest, maybe even half cut, but blamed that on a fuzzy memory of a single gun shot some years ago, although she can't recall who shot who. 

    Shame, she was alright that 'Lola'

    Watched the night disappear on the pool terrace.

    DISASTER AVERTED......  One shot glass, one fridge magnet and one Christmas decoration safely purchased.......

    Kommentare

  • 28Jan 2013

    12 Leaving Rio for Buenos Aires 28.01.2013

     

    Beschreibung

    Monday, 28th January.

    We pack up and leave Rio and move onto Buenos Aires, for our first call in Argentina.

    Afternoon flight down the coast a little to the land of Tango, Evita, Little Ossie (In The Cup for Totten-ham no longer a possible sound track) and Maradona.

    Weather this morning in Rio at 8.30 a little cloudy and 23C, similar temperature in Buenos Aires, but SUNNY!

    Soundtrack today "Holiday", Dizzee Rascal

    Fotos & Videos

    Kommentare

  • 29Jan 2013

    13 Buenos Aires 29.01.2013 Argentinien —

    CF, Argentinien

    Beschreibung

    Flying into the capital of Argentina.
    Home of Tango, Evita, Maradona, so dance, tears and cheats.
    Here for a couple of days before boarding the Star Princess


    Monday 28th....

    As we we're travelling to the next stop on the trip we decided to have a lazy day.

    Needed to pack again, well just repack the stuff we've used so far, which didn't take too long, and then went up to the pool bar to chill, have some lunch before off to the airport.

    Whilst chilling we thought of some additional tunes for Cathedral FM's playlist, including 'Living on a Prayer', Bon Jovi, 'Praying for Time'', George Michael, 'Devil Woman', Cliff Richard, 'Son of a Preacher Man', Dusty Springfield, 'Pray', Take That, 'Devil Went Down to Georgia', Charles Daniels Band, 'Church of the Poison Mind', Culture Club, 'Say a Little Pray', Aretha Franklin, anything by Maxi Priest, 'Like a Prayer', Madonna, or 'An Audience with the Pope', by Elbow.......

    Flight to Buenos Aires took two and a half hours, and was nought like the TAM flight out here. Flew with Emirates, and never want to fly with another airline again. What's that Kaz, we've got Emirates home from Chile when we come back, oh, we're flying with LAN, which is TAM but last and first letters are just one away in the alphabet!!

    Arrived late in BA, but still really warm, 30+C, and taxi driver was a bit of a nutter, and clearly wanted to save the best of BA for us to discover ourselves today as he took us through all the backstreets (we hope) to get to the Hotel.

    The Hotel from the outside looked a little, 'provisional' but inside is fantastic, and the room amazing....

    So today, Tuesday 29th January, plans are to visit Avenida 9 de Julio, the main avenue in BA, which also has the main Square and El Obelisco. Loads of cafes and bars, and I'm sure tat shops. Galerias Pacifico is on the list, it's a big shop, sort of the Argies version of Selfridges, and Museo Evita, a museum dedicated to Andrew Lloyd Webber's stage show, OK to Eva Duarte Peron and possibly the cemetery where she is buried. See if we can take in a Tango show a bit later....

    Todays temperature in BA, 22C currently, its 7.30 am in BA we are three hours behind you in the UK (that means its 10.30 there Mrs Mam). It's predicted to hit 38C later, and looks like its going to be very sunny with it.

    Today's soundtrack has to be 'Don't Cry Me Argentina'

    Kommentare

  • 30Jan 2013

    14 Boarding today... 30.01.2013

     

    Beschreibung

    Morning All

    I've changed the format a little, and have moved the main trip Blog, to entry for 12th January, and will simply do the updates here on the main Blog.

    Please still fell free to comment though, we really wanna see those comments....

    Updated Wednesday 30th January, 9.00 am in Buenos Aires (12.00) in UK

    Tuesday 29th January

    Full day in Buenos Aires (BA), today to see the sites.

    Started the adventure by catching the subway from the hotel into town.

    Leaving the hotel hit by the heat. High 30s today, very sunny, very hot!!

    Walked along Avienda 9 de Julio, and the Avienda de Mayo to the Royal Palace. Whilst walking along the latter, called in at an Evita photo exhibition. I think I might have found the true reason for the conflict between us and the Argentines in the 80s, and it's not to do with islands off the coast further south.

    Check out the picture below of Kaz with 'Eva', or is it with 'Maggie'. 

    I think all those years ago an Argentine snatch squad broke into Madame Tussauds in London, stole Maggie's statue, brought it here and dressed it up as Evita, and there's been a tempered relationship ever since.  I reckon if Mr Cameroon confirmed to Cristina we don't want the statue back, but she's not having the islands, and that could appease things.

    Next we moved on to El Caminito which is an area made popular by Tango shows at restaurants at lunchtime. We had a wander, saw a little bit of dancing, bought some tat and had lunch. 

    Final call of the day was to jump a cab to Cementerio de la Recoleta, the famous cemetery here where there are some over the top mausoleums (900ish) with thousands of sarcophagi! This is the place to be entombed in BA, people are dying to get in here! Wandered around for a while, looking for Evita, with no luck, so finally decided to follow a guided tour that was moving with purpose, which led us straight there.

    Had dinner at the hotel. Usually I can't be bothered with 'nouveau cuisine', but thought we'd give it a try, so we had a five course taster menu. The food was really good, although a few weird mixtures, but they worked, and we have an interesting starter for a dinner party at our place. Get your invitation requests in now!!!!

    We did however add to this a five course meal, a five course wine pairing, a different recommended wine with each course. Turned into the best evening of the trip so far, our waiter, only been here a month, didn't know what had hit him. Although I think he had a bit of a crush on us, both of us!!

    Today, lazy day, then this afternoon the holiday will begin in earnest as we board our ship for the cruise.

    Temperature 33C, today's soundtrack, "Sea Cruise" by Frankie Ford

    Fotos & Videos

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  • 31Jan 2013

    15 Third Stop 31.01.2013 Uruguay —

    Montevideo, Uruguay

    Beschreibung

    First port of call.
    I always thought of this place due to the Graf Spee being scuttled in World War 2, but perhaps not a great thought connection as this is a cruise I'm on.
    Best stick to birthplace of the World Cup.....

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  • 01Feb 2013

    16 Full day at sea 01.02.2013

     

    Beschreibung

    First full day at sea, feel cocktails and sitting in the sun coming on....

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  • 02Feb 2013

    17 Puerto Madryn 02.02.2013 Argentinien —

    Puerto Madryn, Argentinien

    Beschreibung

    Rather mad, but true, this part of Argentina was inhabited by Welsh (yes Welsh) settlers back in 1865.
    Can only guess that Bryn got lost on the way home from the pub one evening, and weeks later woke up surrounded by penguins.
    Talking of which, should be the first day on penguin pictures and jokes

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  • 03Feb 2013

    18 Approaching The Falklands 03.02.2013

     

    Beschreibung

    OK, so where did I get to

    Last time I updated, we were off to board the ship, and we've now been on board 4 days, so a bit to catch up on.

    As you can probably tell by the time lag since the last update, we've been having fun....

    Boarding was, actually normally is, a very busy time. The ship had arrived late in from the previous cruise, so was running behind schedule, some hassle with the Argentine port authorities, which apparently is all too common from the comments made by the captain in his "Welcome" message.

    Finally got on board and found our room, turned the TV in the room on, and the Spurs/Norwich game was on!!!!

    First day/evening on board was all about finding your bearings around the ship. To be honest that took us a couple of days, and we think we've got it sorted now, but the deck plan on the site below, will give you an idea of the size of the ship.

    http://www.princess.com/learn/ships/tp/deck_plans/index.html

    Thursday 30th January, we stopped and went ashore at Montivideo, which as far as I'm aware is famous for the Battle of The River Plate, where the British ships Achilles, Ajax and Exeter chased the German Battleship Graf Spee into the harbour, where it was then skuttled. They have some of the ship as a memorial on the docks.

    Montivideo was a really nice city, although not a great deal to see from a tourist point of view, but it had a nice feel to it, probably more so than Rio and Buenos Aires.

    Back on board after dinner, we decided to give the casino a go, and played Blackjack for a few hours, and should've played for maybe half that time and walked away when we had doubled our money, but didn't!!!!!

    Friday 1st February was a day at sea, or actually more like an afternoon for us as we reset our clocks the night before, and weren't meant to, so needed up and out late. However we did check out The Sanctuary at the front of the ship, which is a more exclusive laid back sun deck. Very nice, and feel we will do this more when we have days at sea.

    The stay was cut a little short by a bit of a breeze building up, that did turn a bit chilly around half four, which meant most hit the bars early.

    And so to yesterday, Saturday 2nd February.

    Another call at an Argentine port called Puerto Madryn. This port was originally settled by the Welsh, and is most famous for the peninsula that has Porte Norte at its most north western point, which is home to a sea-lion colony, oh and a colony of 400,000 penguins.

    Interesting drive to get there, they only have tarmac roads in the town,then on to gravel tracks for the rest of the way. 

    The penguins sort of ignore the fact that there are loads of humans around. As some of the pictures will show, the landscape wasn't as expected, but you do get up close to these birds.

    Loads of penguin pictures taken, quite a bit of video, including the most predictable piece of video footage of Kaz walking with, and pretending to be, a penguin!!

    An evening of food and drink, finished off with a bottle of Melbec in the piano bar, to be honest we were looking to avoid a couple we'd ended up talking to earlier in a another bar!!

    Tat count so far, fridge magnets 5, Christmas decorations 4, Shot glasses 3 and 1 calendar and 1 print....

    Today, Sunday 3rd is at sea.

    Kaz is off for a massage, I'm hoping to watch the Spurs game, if the weather is good, this afternoon will be spent back in The Sanctuary, and tonight we'll probably join all the Americans watching the Super Bowl.

    I mentioned weather, we are expecting some, with potentially 15/20 foot waves at some point later, and actually as things stand, the stop at The Falklands is under threat, not through politics, but through weather. At Stanley the ship doesn't dock, instead you're ferried to the port by water taxis, and if the weather is bad, these can't come along side safely. We will see what happens.

    Been checking on the football, Love the work Rafa is doing at Chelski....

    Today's temperature is 22C, soundtrack, "Sailing".....

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  • 04Feb 2013

    19 Back in the UK 04.02.2013 Falklandinseln —

    Stanley, Falklandinseln

    Beschreibung

    Feel a little 'Pomp & Circumstance' building for this stop.
    If it happens. there is the smallest of chances that the route may need to be re-planned due to the tensions between UK and Argentina over the islands, but should be OK.
    If we land, then I'm off to the battlefields, before visiting more penguins
    Probably need to be careful when looking for a 'Shot' glass here

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  • 05Feb 2013

    20 Cape Horn 05.02.2013

     

    Beschreibung

    Day at sea cruising round the Horn
    The seas can get stormy here, that would be amazing if we can get some great pictures.
    Buckets at the ready

    Morning All

    I've changed the format a little, and have moved the main trip Blog, to entry for 12th January, and will simply do the updates here on the main Blog.

    Please still fell free to comment though, we really wanna see those comments....

    Updated Sunday 3rd February, 17.45 on board, 20.45 UK, we are midway between Argentina and The Falklands..

    News of the last few days is below the map in the 3rd February waypoint...

    Some thoughts for now though......Cruises are very social events, and if you're not comfortable making polite conversation with strangers, then probably not the easiest holidays to go on. Not that you can't just do your own thing, it's just that everybody else attempts to ensure that you're included and not left out even if you want to be.

    For instance, we've wandered along to a few of the quiz events, they're on all the time throughout the day, and in two out of the three so far, because we were sat by ourselves were invited to join bigger teams. I'll come back to this.

    Meal times also, can be occasions where you end up sitting and discussing the days coming or past events, with strangers you normally wouldn't talk to. I guess it's a little like the Olympic phenomena on the tubes in London, where strangers spoke to each other.

    First morning for breakfast, we went to one of the posh restaurants, and when offered sharing or single table, went for sharing, which shocked us both!! We sat with an older American couple from LA, and then were joined by an older couple from Ottawa. Nice breakfast discussing the day coming (in Montivideo), other cruises, always a conversation starter, and the Olympics in London, the fact that we had got there was very enviously received by all four.

    Our other meal experience was at the ranch yesterday after the penguin visit, again joined by two couples, one Spanish, didn't speak English, so just the odd smile and gesture, the other couple, from USA, just a bit outside New York, let's call them Mitchell & Cam (if you watch Modern Family you'll know what I mean).

    They were on their 6th cruise together, and as the Spanish weren't drinking that much, downed two bottles of red with us, before then stealing another bottle from the table next to us to finish a third. Actually only Mitchell drank, Cam hasn't drunk for many years, and 'she' liked to let you know. They were a right funny couple, quite old, been together in excess of thirty years, had a number of stories, and are looking out for us at the Super Bowl tonight!!!!

    Trips also you end up chatting to couples, especially if you hit a common theme early on. On the coach trip round Montivideo, we started chatting to a couple, one of which owned up to being a Chelski season ticket holder, so footy chat with her, especially as we were visiting the World Cup museum, whilst her husband, Steve, admitted he was a football widower and didn't go.

    So back to the quizzes, and being included.... 

    Most of the time, it's really nice. First one we stumbled across, hadn't planned to join in on, we were invited to join a team of Americans (Chinese Americans I think) who were really friendly and we had a good quiz time with them. We all discussed the answers and no one bossed

    We were at Name That Tune Motown quiz yesterday, sitting by ourselves, and a couple asked if they could join us, and then took over!!! They were Londoners!!! So we quizzed, little bit of light talk, and as we left to have something to eat, agreed might be back after eating. Now We had intended going to go back to this bar after eating last night, and did, but they were still sitting where we had sat, and so we were stuck with the sit with them, sit somewhere else and how does this look if spotted, or go somewhere else scenario, we took the later, and went to the piano bar, for them to walk past later.....

    The other quiz we went to was called "Majority Rules", and we sat alone for this one, and after two of ten questions worked out we weren't going to win it. The idea was to answer the same as every one else, those who answered in the Majority, won a point. So we decided to go for an alternative approach. Question 3 was name your most desirable woman, so we went for Maggie Thatcher, Q4, most desirable man, Ozzy Osbourne, most desirable car, Skoda, you get the drift.

    The answers were read out, and we kind of niggled the quiz master as the answers we were giving we're getting better laughs than his jokes, especially best place for a first date, being a Lap Dancing Club, and the best Christmas present for your Mother-in-Law being a Tiger (A Hungry One!).

    Such fun....

    Fotos & Videos

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  • 06Feb 2013

    21 Tierra Del Fuego 06.02.2013 Argentinien —

    Ushuaia, Argentinien

    Beschreibung

    We call in at Ushuaia, Tierra Del Fuego, or Land of Fire, back in Argentina.
    Tierra Del Fuego was named by Magellan when he discovered the passage through this region, having seen flames rising from the darkened lands.
    We'll be seeing more wildlife, as we take the Southernmost Railway trip in the world to the most Southernmost tip of land in the world.
    And Kaz has checked it out, and it has a crappy gift shop.......

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  • 07Feb 2013

    22 Arrive in Chile, Puerto Arenas 07.02.2013 Chile —

    Punta Arenas, Chile

    Beschreibung

    Walking today
    We are in Chile for the first time, and are taking a cable car up into the Patagonia mountains, and then trekking back down.
    Could be worst, could be the other way round.

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  • 08Feb 2013

    23 Amalia Glacier (Cruise) 08.02.2013 Chile —

    Chile

    Beschreibung

    Cruising day at sea, but also amongst the fjords and near the Amalia Glacier

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  • 10Feb 2013

    24 Puerto Montt 10.02.2013 Chile —

    Puerto Montt, Chile

    Beschreibung

    Another stop in Chile
    At the moment we haven't decided what to do here, although there is the chance of some rafting, so maybe.....

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  • 11Feb 2013

    25 Last day at sea 11.02.2013 Chile —

    Chile

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  • 12Feb 2013

    26 Disembarking 12.02.2013 Chile —

    Valparaiso, Chile

    Beschreibung

    Disembark today

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  • 13Feb 2013

    27 Santiago 13.02.2013 Chile —

    Stgo, Chile

    Beschreibung

    Final stop of the trip.
    Travel in land to Santiago for a couple of days before the flight home.

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