Whilst clearly I don't expect much sympathy from those of you having to go to work every day, all this travelling is tiring stuff, so we decided that we would take a break over Christmas and stay in one place for a while. We had already booked ourselves into a nice hotel in Mendoza for three nights over Christmas itself, and we had like the place when we were here before, so we decided to book ourselves into the hostel here for six nights too.
Part of the logic was that the hostel has a fantastic wifi connection, so we were able to use the time to upload all of our photos onto the internet so that we know they are safe should we be robbed or end up in another fire or anything. I also used the time to try to catch up with a few blogs and getting some of the missing photos onto the blogs. I have caught up as far as Raqchi now, so the photos of Machu Picchu are on, but I still have a few more to go, and for some reason that seems to be beyond my technical abilities, I can't get some of them to load onto the embedded slideshow, so I may need to find a workaround for that.
As it turned out it was as well that we stayed put for a while, because on our arrival at the hostel, Nic managed to cut his foot. It wasn't terrible, and I had my little first aid kit ready and able to deal with it, but it was best that he wasn't having to walk on it too much or be carrying a rucksack. He heals fast anyway, so it was fine by the time we left on 27th.
So while the rest of you were running around making all of your last minute Christmas preparations and doing the food shop etc, we were relaxing in Mendoza drinking wine and beer. Not that I'm gloating you understand (as if I would), it's just that it is a very different way of living. We actually found it really strange not to be doing any of the Christmas shopping, writing cards, wrapping presents etc, and in particular to be in a place that was averaging 30 degrees centigrade. It also is the kind of time that you most notice that you don't have your family and friends around you, which is of course the thing that you do miss when away from ´home´ for a long time.
Christmas is celebrated a bit differently here as they focus their effort on Christmas Eve. We booked into the hotels traditional argentinian grill for its Christmas Eve dinner. It was an impressive buffet of starters, an unlimited grill of steaks, pork, chicken etc, and another impressive buffet of desserts, all washed down with as much champagne and wine as you could manage. We had been chilling out in the spa and having a massage during the day, so we arrived fairly early for an Argentinian meal at 9pm and we wew some of the first there. However we were also some of the last to leave a little after midnight, so we managed to empty a few bottles for them in that time!
Santa arrived at midnight, and had a little bottle of sparkling wine for everyone, so we had our photo with him, and then went back to our room to let the food go down before getting to bed late. Happily breakfast was served until 11am, so an early morning was not required.
Christmas Day itself was very laid back, with a late breakfast, champagne cocktails on the sunny terrace, a few phone calls to family and, in keeping with normal Christmas traditions, more food and wine. It was a nice day, and having treated ourselves to the good hotel it did feel good, but it didn't really feel like Christmas. We will have to consider in future whether that matters or not, and if it does, we will perhaps need to find some ways to create our own Christmas wherever we may be.
But all in all, it was nice to stay put for a while, catch up with some of our tasks, and generally just relax before we hit the road again on 27th.
Welcome to our travel blog. We are Tabitha and Nic. In 2011 we 'retired' in our early 40s and set off to travel the world. We spent our first year in South America and have been lucky enough to make two trips to Antarctica.
Our blog is a record of our travels, thoughts and experiences. It is not a guide book, but we do include some tips and information, so we hope that you may find it useful if you are planning to visit somewhere we have been. Or you may just find it interesting as a bit of armchair travel.