01/26/2009 95 °F
January 23 & 24, 2009, Buenos Aires, Argentina. Also a beautiful city, much larger than Montevideo. Sailing into the port was interesting. BA is not a deep water port; our ship was the largest ever to dock there. There is only one small narrow channel which could handle our ship, and our captain announced that often there was no more than 3 feet of water between the haul and the bottom. Ships not a large as us are also forced to use this channel, and its not wide enough for two to pass. So, many ships were stacked up and we waited our turn. We were a couple of hours late getting there. The first day we toured the city in the daytime and we went to a Tango/dinner show in the evening. The city tour took us to an old cathedral, historic places and parks, lunch at a coffee house in the city, and to an arts and crafts section of town, where we could buy souvenirs. We saw much of Buenos Aires and learned much about the culture and history from our guide. The Tango/dinner show at night was tremendous. The venue was the one of the oldest theaters in the city; the food was wonderful (Letty and I had steaks), and the tango show had us mesmerized. Day 1 was a long day, we got back to the ship after midnight, having to get up early for an all day tour the next day. Day 2 was a trip to a working ranch (complete with cowboys - in Argentina called gauchos) about two hours drive from the city. This was a private trip arranged by one of our group. Enroute we stopped in an old historic village to walk around a bit and site see. The ranch was also a bread and breakfast for Argentinians. There were 22 in our group. On arrival, we were greeted with beverages and an appetizer that is best described as a meat pie turnover (and absolutely delicious). Many of us then were taken horseback riding. I did this; Letty opted to take a carriage ride with some others. Our ride took us through cattle grazing territory and lasted about an hour. The cowboys then put on a show, showing off their trained horses and performing horseriding skills events, including some races. Most impressive was a cowboy who had a horse lay on its side,then roll onto its back, having him sit on its stomach, then roll over with the cowboy remaining on the horse, ending up in the correct position. We were then served a meal outdoors in a beautiful setting. It was the best beef we had yet on this trip. With the meal, there was a singer and guitarist entertaining us. We left the ranch, returning to the ship by 5:30 p.m. for sailing away from Buenos Aires. By now, we are tired, and are looking forward to the next several days at sea to relax. Our next port is Ushuaia, Argentina, which is the world's most southerly city, and we'll be there on Thursday the 26th. Before getting there, on the 25th, we will sail around Cape Horn.