Lynn & David travelling in South America travel blog

Lynn in courtyard at Pink Palace, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Lynn with guard at Pink Palace, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Room where important visitors are received, Pink Palace, Buenos Aires, Argentina

The New 100 Peso Note (with Evita on it)

Courtyard, Pink Palace, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Inner Courtyard, Pink Palace, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Lynn and the inner courtyard, Pink Palace, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Lynn and David, looking out from Pink Palace, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Eva Peron's dress, Pink Palace, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Conference Room, Pink Palace, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Saturday 15th February 2014 and Sunday 16th February 2014

Buenos Aires, Argentina to Asuncion, Paraguay

Today, because the truck had broken down and couldn’t be fixed, we had an extra day in Buenos Aires, so after breakfast, we went to the Pink Palace in Plaza de Mayo – Casa Rosada (originally the fortress but now the presidential palace) to do a tour inside. It is only open to the public on Saturdays and Sundays, so our forced delay meant we were able to see it inside. The tour lasted for about 2 hours and the guide spoke about the history of the building, the artwork, the various people in Argentinian history and the current use of the building. We walked through most of the building – which is a working office during the week. We went into the formal room where important visitors are welcomed – it is painted pale blue and white after the flag colours. We visited the large meeting room and also a small room where the president meets with ministers. The walls were covered in art works and there were also several galleries with artwork. There was a beautiful courtyard in the centre of the building complete with palm trees and fountain. We also went out onto the balcony that featured in the movie Evita. We were even allowed in the private office of the president although not allowed to take photos in there due to security. Her office had a large meeting table and various ornate side tables containing photo frames – unfortunately at such an angle we couldn’t see the actual photos. The desk had 2 large piles of textbooks with markers in many pages and also various papers. It was quite fascinating to see that this government has more transparency. Many people from Argentina were on the tour so it appeals to all sorts of people. After we had finished, we walked down to Puerto Madero, a wealthy area near the old port – think Walsh Bay in Sydney – where there were many new apartment buildings, restaurants etc. we had a fancy ice cream, had lunch in the Galleria Pacifica food court and then went back to the hostel.

We left at 6:00pm for the central bus station to catch the overnight bus to Asuncion in Paraguay with our new leader Bethany, who has temporarily replaced Ninka, who unfortunately lost her passport in Buenos Aires. The bus left at 8:00pm and we all sat in reclining seats on the top deck. Once the bus leaves (apart from picking up a few extra passengers) it doesn’t stop until it reaches the border of Argentina and Paraguay about 19 hours later. Surprisingly during the evening we were served a small meal consisting of an empanada, a jam tart, some spaghetti, a bread roll and a small pepsi. But no more food was supplied for the following 17 hours and we only stopped once to refuel in the bus company’s premises somewhere – so no opportunity to buy anything. Fortunately we had our ‘snack bag’ and dined on yoghurt for breakfast, cracker biscuits with peanut butter for morning tea, cracker biscuits with cheese slices for lunch and an apple each, and a few lollies during the afternoon.

Once we arrived at the bus terminal in Asuncion, Paraguay, we waited for about 2 hours for a transfer to our hotel on the other side of the city. When we arrived there, a replacement Tucan truck was waiting with a new driver Martin, who will take us to Foz do Iguacu in Brazil, where the other truck will meet us (all being well and if it is fixed). The hotel is very nice and after we had a shower, we went down for a meeting with the two temporary leaders and they told us what was going to happen for the next few days – a refreshing change to the lack of information we have (mostly) had up until now on the trip. We then went out to dinner with the group to a restaurant and Tucan picked up the total food and drink bill!! Home to bed around 11:00pm.

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