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New 2019 Speed

January 7, 2019

What happened…

After a few days exploring Buenos Aires we hopped on another flight to Mendoza to pick up near where we left off last year. This time we plan to not leave the continent until we reach the end of the earth.

Amanda writes: So we had planned in our heads that we would stay at a hotel near the airport and not assemble our bikes. This way we were basically just popping in to see Buenos Aires before flying over to the West coast where we left off. Only challenge was our flight out of Buenos Aires was booked at the wrong airport. Shit. So the difference in airports is significant. For those of you from BC it’s basically like the equivalent of thinking you’re booked out of Vancouver (YVR) but realizing you booked out of Abbotsford. Add to the equation it’s not like we can just call an Uber or a taxi because we have two bikes and all our bags. Andrew worked his magic and we found a driver who would do the trip at 4am with all of our stuff for about $60 CDN. Could have been worse.

So the guy comes to pick us up and our wonderful AirBnB host got up with us. We had hoped to fit everything in the car but ended up having to put the bikes on the roof. They easily went on the roof but apparently then there were some safety concerns. They driver and the AirBnB host talked about it and decided if we just change the route we took on the roads we wouldn’t need a secondary security car. At first I couldn’t understand it but then I clued in. Because the bikes were visible on the roof, we were instantly a target for being robbed. After seeing the mugging the other day I guess I wasn’t that surprised. Anyways off we went with a little tip from our host that next time we hire two cars. One for the stuff and the second as security. Now I know that lots of people warn you about some countries and robbers and bad guys but I just really feel like we’re hearing it more here. Maybe it’s because we witnessed the mugging the other day or maybe we’re just out of practice; but in any event I’m paying more attention.

We made it to the airport and learned our flight was 2 hours delayed which didn’t bug us much. It just gave Andrew some time to get a SIM card for his phone.

Exploring Buenos Aires airport.

We checked in with no problems or questions either. Andrew and I usually book the cheapest flight with the smallest airline even if it has long layovers and many stops. On this occasion maybe we’re getting soft because we paid almost double what a normal ticket is to ensure there were not questions with our luggage, it’s size and weight or the bikes and we got preferential boarding. It was great because the line to board the plane was queued up for what seemed like forever with the 100+ people and we just stood up from our seats and moved to the front of the line. Then during the flight there was some turbulence so they couldn’t do a drink service but they did make a point of coming to Andrew and I and giving us water. It was kind of funny; I almost felt bad but people must know that we paid for that shit.

Preferential treatment means drinks in spite of turbulence.

Anyways as we approached Mendoza we got a glimpse of the beautiful mountains and scenery and suddenly I was very excited to be cycling again. We landed and got our gear, assembled the bikes and headed into town to our AirBnB. Before we arrived we had spoken to our host and when we told him we were cycling from the airport he said “be careful”. Again am I out of practice of hearing it so much, or am I really hearing it more? Anyways, our map said when you leave the airport rather than staying on the main busy road meander through the small communities which is pretty normal cycling and so we did. Within one block of being off the road the first two cars that passed us, slowed beside us to tell us to get out of here and back to the main road. One of the guys was pretty adamant and seemed really concerned. We figured we’d best listen to the locals and so at the next street we went back to the main road. Traffic was pretty courteous so it was okay. After a bit of a detour we arrived at our AirBnB which is not nearly as nice as our last one. Maybe Andrew should pick them … Anyways we’re going to have a little siesta, enjoy a bottle of Argentina wine and then do our final pack and plan to leave early in the morning.

Organizing the gear for the bikes.

Andrew chipped a tooth! We’re somewhere between wondering if the tooth fairy comes and should we visit a dentist?

Andrew writes:I really messed up with the whole airport thing. Had I realized we had flights out of two different airports I think I would have insisted that we just go into BA proper upon arrival. Oh well, Martin, the taxi driver was really nice to talk to and patient with me as I try to remember and relearn Spanish. It’s not easy at 4am though!

Once again, having everyone warn us about security upon arrival and as we travelled through Mendoza is really getting on my nerves and makes me not want to ride here. I don’t feel unsafe, and Mendoza as a city actually seems really nice. I prefer to to Buenos Aires..but the locals make me feel like we’re wandering around blindfolded in a mine field. Amanda is fired from picking AirBNB’s now. While the host is friendly, and the air conditioning works, the bed is shaped like a banana. S’gonna be a long night.

Back on the Road
New 2019 Speed