Sunday, August 12, 2007

Certificado Ushuaia

Certificado Ushuaia
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
I can hardly believe it, but this is the last entry from Ushuaia.

Eight months, some great experiences and photos, the whole 8 months on another BLOG in Spanish and tomorrow I'm gone, forever....well who knows? Never say never.

¿What am I going to miss?
My friends from here: Celia, young enough to be my daughter but who has looked after me all the way, helped with everything including the language problems and correcting my translations, shared mate and always been there. Amanda & Exequiel for all their help and friendship and patience.To all those at Finis terrae, Silvina and Adriana, my friend from El Video and all the other great people who have crossed my path.
The views and the mountains that are different every single day.
The colours and the beauty, the sunrises and sunsets. Magnificent.
The life of the streets and the people.
Lots of things.

¿What am I NOT going to miss?

The dogs.....
The dust and the mud, although I love the snow.
The dogs.
The hole in the bathroom roof and the almost warm shower every morning.
The dogs.
The nena running around upstairs at 12.30 at night.
Did I mention the dogs? They are barking now.

And the next adventure? After Buenos Aires and Back to OZ ...Who knows. Guess I'll just keep writing about it here.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

My Addicted Plant

Ushuaia 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
I am very concerned about my plant, a gift from Celia when I arrived to brighten up a white walled rather sterile environment in my depto. The whole 8 1/2 months I have been feeding it a constant supply of Nag Champa and I am worried that Celia won't be able to continue the supply to the levels to which it is accustomed. I use a lot of Nag Champa, and although it is cheap here it is an extravagance, she also works incredibly long hours and just won't be able to feed the addiction as I do.
Maybe I will have to send money to keep it going or she can slowly wean it off it's constant hits?

The Sock Seller

Ushuaia Winter 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
Every day, just like the Telebingo man, the sock seller is outside the Supermarket, rain hail snow and sunshine. He hangs all his wares in convenient gaps and waits patiently. He also has some cardboard to stand on now and helps return trolleys and with shopping, but doesn't smile like the telebingo man. He is Chilean and a little disillusioned with life in Ushuaia. He asked me about Australia and thinks it is the land of milk and honey, with no unemployment, but the grass always is greener...
Sometimes he has some sales, but the supermarket has the same goods so I don't know how well he does.

Friday, August 10, 2007

The Telebingo Seller

Ushuaia Winter 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
Every day, rain, hail snow and sunshine, the happy Telebingo Fueguino ticket seller is to be found standing at the door of my local supermarket. He is one of many around town. Apparently there is a draw from the local hall on tv on Sundays and these are the tickets he sells. As I don't have a telly not a lot of point buying a ticket.
Now, in the colder weather he stand on a collapsed cardboard box to keep the cold out, but always has a smile and is on hand to help with the trolleys, or the shopping if necessary.
The supermarket "guards' also double as trolley finders, unwanted product returners and general handymen, but are dressed officially in their security uniforms.

Botella al mar

Ushuaia Winter 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
Just when I am leaving, everything happens. Lots of work and now a radio interview. This was on the local community station Radio Activa 98.9. Like all community radio the focus of the station is the local community: to form a community, strengthen the local identity and to encourage the participation of the community. They are able to exercise freedom of expression and are the "voice for those that have no voice" and aim to elevate the level of debate in society, but foremost the they are a collective for social change. During the week 36 programs are presented by 64 local citizens. You can read about them, en español here

Saturday, August 04, 2007

Further to An Observation.....

It's not just me, others have noticed it also: here

Friday, August 03, 2007

Reflexiones en español

Ushuaia Winter 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
Si te gustaria leer mis reflexiones de un tiempo breve en Ushuaia en español está aca:

An Observation

I don't know whether it's just me being sensitive, but I have been in a number of shops lately and happily being served when other customers have interrupted with an expectation of being served. What I find interesting is that the sales person has actually attended to them, sometimes leaving me standing waiting. One actually commented later how rude the person was, but attended them all the same. Another came in looking for work and to offer her resume, interesting, she couldn't even wait until my purchases were completed. Great impression! on me, certainly not. But then maybe I'm just old fashioned and expect service.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Día Del Niños

Ushuaia Winter 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
Well, we've had Mother's Day, Father's Day, Friend's Day, Independence Day, Tierra Del Fuego Day, Flag Day, Secretary's Day and probably a lot of other special Days that I missed, but as you can see the next one is the Day of the Kids. I suppose there are Grandma and Grandpa days and probably one for the pets as well!
The people days are usually on a Sunday and like ours I guess they are a great way to make money - this sign was in the Supermarket window after all.
We seem to have had an enormous amount of public holidays since I have been here, and naturally I don't know when they are. Usually the first clue is the lack of traffic noise in the morning, then I check to see if the business opposite is open, they open about 8.00am, and if not I have a pretty good idea it's a holiday. Next step is to check the calendar and find out just what special Day it is.. Just checked the calendar and I'll be gone before the next one - which is when Jose San Martin passed into Immortality. It's coloured but I don't know if it's a public holiday.

El Colectivo

Ushuaia Winter 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
Most of the time, if I am not walking, I travel in the local bus, the colectivo. There are 3 that service pretty much all of Ushuaia, with the imaginative names of A B C. My buses are A and B and to go into the centre the stop is a couple of blocks away and both stop there. Line A takes me along the waterfront route and is best for town, line B goes up the top and this I use to get to the 2 schools, To come home both pass close by, but A stops right at my corner, which is great with a heap of shopping.
One of the first things I noticed about colectivo travel is that everyone offers seats, to we "older" citizens, to pregnant mums and to mothers with children. Very rarely do I stand, even if I say no, they insist.Maybe I am looking really old, or because I am an extranjero.
The other thing I love to watch is the drivers compulsive straightening of the paper money. A trip no matter how far, costs 1.25P about 75c Aus. and having the right change is not always easy, so they tend to get lots of notes and as we are driving along, most of them spend time straightening out the notes and putting them into a billfold.
It's such fun people watching.

Los Taxistas

Ushuaia Winter 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
Some of my best chats here have been with the taxi drivers, on the whole they are a friendly and very informative group. I guess this is true in lots of places, but usually travelling by taxis is one of the last resorts as the prices are so exorbitant. In South America, it is often the only way to travel, the buses are very crowded and one has to be very aware of all their possessions, although that is not true here in Ushuaia and I do travel by Collectivo frequently.
But back to the taxistas, some don't talk, but most are interested in their tourists and like to practice their English, but also happy to chat away to me in español. I have had all sorts of conversations, including a classical music lesson on the way home from one of the concerts. I am sure he would have liked to take the long way home so he could finish my instruction. They are very honest and helpful, generally plentiful and certainly an easy way to get around town.
There is an upgrade version of private taxis, the Remis, and to use these you have to phone, but usually for me it's faster to walk to the corner and the local rank and the service is just as good.

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

El Asado

Ushuaia Winter 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
Every weekend and public holiday, rain, snow or sunshine, the city of Ushuaia is enveloped in a cloud of smoke from the multitude of los Asados and the smell of cooking meat penetrates everything. The local el supermercado and la carniceria are full of shoppers in the morning buying the meats, vegetables and naturally the la cerveza and el vino to accompany el asado and around mid day the plumes of smoke start to rise all over the city. On public holidays there is a very heavy smoke cover as everyone seems to be cooking outdoors and the smell is very strong.
The traditional Asado is Cordero or lamb, but all sorts of meats are used from sausages, offal, cuts of beef and of course the cordero and just like the good ol' Aussie bar-b-que the blokes are outside with the fire, the meat and the los cervezas. The weather isn't as conducive to eating outside as it is in Australia but the cooking is certainly done outside.
The apparatus, called a chulengo, varies greatly from just a simple grate over the fire to more elaborate structures and this is a pretty typical style cooker. I have seen the guys out with the welding gear creating very elaborate structures and have seen cookers on balconies, front yards and back yards - wherever there is a space.
PS One of my English students told me last night that it isn't a Sunday unless they have an Asado, and as he is a fisherman his favourite Asado is fish.

Tenedor Libre

Ushuaia Winter 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
If you aren't lucky enough to have space for an Asado or live in un depto you can enjoy your bar-b-que or asado in any of restaurants in town, where they have a set price, eat all you can "tenedore libre" or literally free fork, lunch. A number of the restaurants put this on every day, particularly those out of town at the tourist stops, but the weekend is the busy time when lots of the locals can be seen enjoying their parrilla. Early morning the truck delivers the cordero (lamb) and the chef starts the fire in the window of the restaurant . When it's ready the cordero starts roasting slowly over the fire and for the next few hours all that end of town smells of the roasting meat. As a vegetarian it's not my thing, much to the disappointment of people here, who tell me it's a MUST, one of the dishes of the region.
The lunch is a buffet style with salads and vegetables to self serve and the roasted meat is served on a drip tray style stand and is refilled as often as required from the kitchen. From what I have seen the cut of meat is very different to what I am accustomed to seeing in Oz and is served with all the fat and appears to be all bone and fat, but everyone seems to love it and comes back for lots more. I know that all the offal is also cooked and served, but I would prefer not to think about that part of it.
Every Sunday most of the "tenedore libre" restaurants are filled with locals in large family groups enjoying their parrilla.

Saturday, July 28, 2007


Ushuaia Winter 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
Yesterday, Thursday 26th July, in heavy snow a small group of people gathered to commemorate the 55th anniversary of the death of Eva Perón, the “spiritual leader of Argentinians, who passed into immortality at the age of 33” Diario Prensa viernes 27 de julio 2007

“Evita continues as valid as in her time"

Living on a Peat Bog

Ushuaia Winter 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
Much of the land around Ushuaia is actually Turbal or peat and therefore a bog and always wet. There are areas where it is cut and processed outside the city, but there is also a large area within the city boundaries that is enclosed by a barb-wire fence.
But family by family squatters have been moving onto the bog and building. At first it was tents and plastic sheeting stretched over a frame, but the structures are becoming more and more permanent in appearance. In summer it was bad enough, as the Turbal is always wet, but can you imagine it now after the rain and the snow? I went by yesterday and took the photos, and discovered that the suburb, it is now called 10 de febrero, has grown and the structures a lot more solid. Originally there were 7 living there, and this has now grown to 35 people, including kids.
An article in the local paper on Wednesday said that the council has signed an agreement with the occupants of 10 de febrero to provide them with essential services, water, and power and chemical toilets in exchange for a promise from the inhabitants that they will control the numbers and not allow any new squatters. The services will be installed outside the squatter area but for their use. Included in the agreement is the promise of re-locating those on the present register to another suburb at a later date.

The signing of the accord… does not generate any rights for the occupants over the land they occupy………

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Supermercado especial...

Ushuaia Winter 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
After the first heavy snowfall several weeks ago the local supermarket was very quick off the mark with the snow shovels, and it looks like they sold heaps. There were quite a few of them out there this morning, and I think I will see a lot more of them today as it is snowing very heavily again. Every time the sun appears I get ready to venture out with the camera, but minutes later we are back to the white stuff.
The snow we had several weeks ago was the heaviest they have had in the town since 1995 and they had snow and freezing weather throughout Argentina, including Buenos Aires, which is the equivalent to snow in Sydney. That was the first for almost a century.
It surprised me that they don't have a lot of snow here in the city and that they were so unprepared for it in many ways. The collectivo, the local bus service coped a fine for not providing their "advertised" service, there were some hills they just couldn't get up and services were discontinued for a while in some areas and the council didn't do a particularly job on the road clearing either.
We shall see what this storm brings.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Las Cortinas

Las Cortinas
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
And speaking of curtains...... they seem to have a slightly different use here, usually only as a frothy sort of window dressing. Most are so thin you could shoot peas through them, as my mum used to say. They don't keep out the light or form any sort of insulation. As there is a street light directly outside my window, I have improvised a little in the bedroom, as you can see. With all that light in the summer I had no hope of sleeping.
It does amaze me though, that everyone looked at me in amazement when I said we use curtains as a form of insulation, I haven't seen any here that are thick or have a reflective backing. Some houses have double glazing, but the majority don't and I would suggest that there are many where the wind whistles through all sorts of gaps. I have used a whole roll of Gaffa tape to block the holes.The curtains don't do a lot to insulate but they help.

El Rito del Mate.....vos sabés de que hablo.....

The Mate Ritual Ushuaia 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
It's a simple infusion, with an unmistakable flavour, that, if one tastes it seriously, you will find that it's not tasty, nor is it's just mate.

To take mate is to share a friendship, with one or with all the people around and is a very serious ritual here

...... the simple mate is nothing more and nothing less than a demonstration of values.....

The preparation and serving of mate is a very important part of the ritual. It's made from a plant the "yerba mate" that is not a tea but is a stimulant. The water mustn't boil, it makes the yerba more bitter, but the kettle goes on and off the heat all the time as the drinking vessel - a hollowed out gourd is traditional, is refilled and handed to the next person. The person who prepares the mate takes the first drink and continues to prepare it for each of the participants. All share the same bombilla or "straw" much to the horror of non Argentinians, and one drinks until you hear the empty straw, usually only several good sips. The mate is then passed back and a new one poured and passed to the next participant.
During the ritual is the time to talk and to listen. If you do not wish to have any more you say "thank you" and you are not handed the mate again. After a while the yerba becomes "washed out", it may be replaced or everyone continues with their day. To be invited to take mate is to be part of the group and is part of the everyday life throughout Argentina and some other South American countries. to share a mate, dear friend, ahora vos sabes,'s not only the mate...

When shall we share mate?

Feeling Safe

Ushuaia is a city in which I have always felt safe and never worried about possessions being stolen, unlike some of the larger South American cities. I had a run in with a bag cutter/purse stealer in Cusco, but retained the purse and lost my camera to a snatcher in Quito, but Ushuaia has never imparted that feeling of unease or concern that others cities do.
People leave their cars open with engines running while they warm up, leave them fully packed and open in the street, I have seen bags, mobile phones and cameras left on tables. The material bag I use here I wouldn't dream of using in a larger city, I would loose the lot in moments. Although there is crime here it certainly isn't as prevalent as in many other cities.
I walk everywhere and have never felt uncomfortable about where I was or what time of the day or night it was. I am not saying that I am not aware and usually pretty careful but I feel safe.
I hope it always stays this way.

The interesting thing about walking is that I have noticed that very few, if any people make eye contact. I am certainly used to eye contact and usually a smile when walking, but very few here look at passers by. I wonder why?

Friday, July 20, 2007

The Daily Clean Up

Ushuaia 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
Every day, very early the team of cleaners are out sweeping and cleaning throughout the city. I have a dumping point opposite and this guy brings his barrow loads and piles them here. Later in the day, depending on the size of the pile, along comes either the garbage truck and collects the pile or for large piles its the front end loader or bobcat and the truck.
It means the city is clean, but it also means lots of people just throw their rubbish down exactly where they are. I have heard mothers telling los niños to drop their rubbish within feet of a rubbish bin, and there are lots of rubbish bins. People also tend to dump their rubbish from cars. Often the dogs get into the heap opposite and every dog always checks the area on the way past.
Rubbish goes out in supermarket bags and often the dogs and birds get into these before they are collected and there are just so many plastic bags everywhere. They are always surprised in the supermarket when I produce my own carry bag.
But for a while every day the city is clean.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Million Dollar Views

Ushuaia Winter 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
Things in my depto might be starting to fall apart - the washing machine, the tiles lifting etc, and los perros still go ballistic with monotonous regularity, but I have Million Dollar Views. Which has made it all worth while.
You just have to look past the ugly buildings and backyards on the one side and the power lines and poles on the other and my vistas are absolutely spectacular. Every day is different and the mountains and colours are just spectacular. I have Mt Olivia and Los 5 Hermanos from the kitchen, and the Glacier Martial and the mountains in Chile on the other side. I can watch the storms coming in from Chile and the snow moving across the mountains, and of course observe life on the ground.
I have become almost obsessive with the camera and every day I am entranced by the changes - both from my windows and out and about. Sunrise and sunset are spectacular.
The flat above me, with the never sleeping nena, has even better views, as the power lines don't intrude,I got to go up and have a look when the tenants changed. But would you believe they never, and I mean never, open the curtains. One is pegged back half way and that's the most I have ever seen it. I don't think the bedroom ever sees the light of day.
Me, estoy enamorado con los colores y las vistas, and I can't get enough of them!


Ushuaia Winter 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
Or maybe I am just getting old....... it's true. I had wanted to do the dog sled bit and finally organised myself to go. Beautiful spot and one of those magic monochromatic days that became even more enchanting when the snow started to fall later in the day.
The ride in the sled...... well, sounds wonderful.....but: great for we tourists I guess. We all took one look at the dogs and commented on how skinny they were, and totally disinterested! I guess we expected the big fluffy Huskies and most of these are cross bred of all varieties - more like wolves actually, but they don't have them here. The disinterest lasted for most of the trip, until we hit the home stretch when finally the speed increased. The route we followed is actually the dog's toilet, and the first thing I did when I got home was hit the shower - all I could smell was........
Logically they don't like to leave their mess around their kennels, so the route is littered with messages, and of course they all continually stop to sniff and produce more. I was very glad that the outward journey was pretty slow as it didn't throw up any..thing.
The views were spectacular and I met some interesting travel companions, I did enjoy the day.
Lunch was, naturally, the Cordero, or lamb done over the fire, which my companions thoroughly enjoyed. Me I had the salad. Maybe I have to rethink this vegetarian bit! Just joking, but everyone really enjoyed the lamb and they kept bringing out more. This is of course how they make their money and Tierra Del Fuego is famous for it's Cordero.

I had played with the idea of a night ride en el trineo con los perros, but I think I have got over that one.
But it does sound romantic.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

El Video

Ushuaians 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
When you don't have a tv and you get tired of talking/listening to yourself - where do you head? For me it was the local Video shop, 2 minutes walk away, depending on the weather.
Once it started to get dark and much colder earlier I decided that home was the place to be and although the computer provides plenty of options for listening and watching, once the internet goes down, things go pretty quiet. So videos have become a source of entertainment and education.
I started choosing those in Spanish only and have watched just about all of them I think,( and caught up on all the new releases, with Spanish subtitles of course) and my friend in the video shop, Carlos Alberto, has recommended many excellent Spanish language movies. Recently there have been a number produced that cover the years of the Military Dictatorships here, and I must admit they are very difficult to watch at times, but certainly provide an insight into the history of Argentina.
I have also learned lots about local life and Argentinian life from my amigo del Video. Muchas gracias amigo.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Los Niños

Ushuaia Winter 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
The kids here keep very different hours to we who are of good old British stock.
For one thing, school is either morning or afternoon in the public system. The morning classes starting at around 8.00 and going through till 12.00 or 12.30, then the afternoon session starting around 1.00 until 5.00 or 5.30 - all depending on the school. So there are always kids around, in shops and in the streets.
Then we get to bed times!!!! The kids are around all the time and seem to keep the same times as their parents. I guess if you don't eat till 9.00 or 10.00 at night you don't go to bed for another hour or two.
There is a nena upstairs who is probably 8ish, and I would say there are very few nights that she is in bed before me. Most nights she is still running around at 11.30. Often she and her mother are not home until 11.00.
Now I know why I never wanted to live in a flat, it was much quieter when my upstairs neighbour was a mostly single male. Enough said!

Anyone for Rugby?

Ushuaia Winter 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
The competition was fierce and the games very serious with a trophy awaiting the winners. Didn't get to see the final game, but there were a few teams and apparently this is a regular event up on the snow fields. Some of the guys looked like they belonged on an Aussie field in summer, not on the snow in winter - no gloves, no leggings......... crazy!

The Humble Aussie Peeler????

Ushuaia Winter 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
Unfortunately,like just about everything else these days, the label said "Made in China", but to me it will always be an Aussie peeler.
Thanks Chris and Lynne and it proved that someone out there actually reads my ramblings.
But now I have my peeler and life is just that much simpler. My Argentinian friends just couldn't believe that anyone would actually post me an implement to peel veggies. Until I demonstrated just how good they are that is. That's why there are only 2 - the 3rd was snaffled instantly by a local. One went straight into my case for future travels and the 3rd is in use and I just might have to raffle it when I leave.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Working Hours

The working hours here in Ushuaia fascinate me, as they reflect those of Spain or countries with hot climates where people take a "siesta" during the hottest part of the day. And Ushuaia, certainly does not have a hot climate.
Work commences in the morning anything between 8.00am, for businesses and Government Offices and 10.00am for retail shops and banks, post office, dentists etc. The shops close again anytime between 12.30 and 1.30, depending on the season and the shop. The banks stay open until 3.00 and many Government offices close at 12.00. The post office stays open, but the Customs man, who inspects every parcel is only available for a few hours, and now in winter only between 10am and 12.30. Outside these hours it is impossible to send parcels or collect those that require Customs inspection.
Then everyone disappears for a few hours, one of my neighbours comes home every day. Then later shops and businesses re-open anywhere between 3.00 and 5.00pm and remain open until 9.00 or 10.00pm, depending on the business, shop or service.
It seems so crazy in a city where in winter the daylight hours are quite short and the climate certainly not conducive to night life outside of a warm home. Who wants to buy clothes at 9.00pm when it's freezing outside? I know where I would rather be.

Sunday, June 03, 2007

The Wonders of Water

Ushuaia Autumn 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
Water is such a wonderful thing and has so many forms. A walk on a very frosty Autumn morning produced some fascinating sights, not the least of which were the puddles, usually noticed but not observed. This particular morning many of them were glorious in their diversity and structure.
I have learned to walk watching the path these days, not only for the ever present dog messages, the mud puddles and now the very dangerous ice, so I get to see things on the path. We have had some serious frost and after the rain the footpaths become skating rinks, and being a warm climate person I am totally unprepared. But just loved these puddles and their unique designs.

Monday, May 21, 2007

An Interesting Statistic.

For the first time in the history of humanity, at some time in the next 10 years, there will be more people over 65 than children younger than 5.............and while in undeveloped countries between now and 2030, the population over 65 will increase by 50%, it is expected that in developed countries the increase will be by 140%

La Nacion. Argentina 20/05/07

Lots of Baby Boomers out there.

Speaking of Cars.......

Ushuaia Autumn 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
......and road rules. I sometimes wonder if there are any/many. If you want to stop, it seems you just put on your hazard lights and stop. It could be double parked, on the corner like this delivery truck, or even in the middle of the road as taxis frequently do to pick up or drop off passengers. The hazard lights seem to be the trick. Occasionally there is a frantic blowing of horns, especially in peak hour, but most of the time everyone just drives around.

Even more fascinating, for me, is that after putting on the hazard lights and stopping, many drivers then get out and do what they need to do, leaving the car running, often with children in the car.... use an ATM, pay a bill, buy cigarettes, whatever. I often pass cars early in the day, left running outside houses, presumably to warm up, but with absloutely no-one in sight. Interesting.

I have yet to see an automatic car here, in fact in all my travels in South America I don't think I have seen one. They are apparently very expensive to buy and so the local industry produces only manual cars. On some of the hills in this town an automatic would certainly be of assistance, but they are all pretty good at handbrake starts - you would have to be! I also look at parking on the hills and hope they have good handbrakes.

Ushuaia Autumn/Winter Inevitability

Ushuaia Autumn 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
All the cars now look like this. One drive after my neighbour cleaned his car, not just the top half as usual, but the whole car, it took on the local appearance once again.
Now the streets are either covered in mud or covered in dust. On the dry days the mud dries to dust and the dust is everywhere. I couldn't believe that for a few days I had hayfever, but there was so much dust in the air I was sneezing. After the rain we have the mud, and that also is everywhere.
Standing too close to a corner is a clean clothes hazard, as the puddles are deceptively deep, and the drivers good at cutting corners. Even walking is a clean clothes hazard as the mud seems to migrate upwards, particurlarly up the back of the jeans.
Coming from what used to be a fanatically clean car country, now they can't afford to be, it's been a bit of a culture shock to see cars totally covered in mud. By the time I get back to OZ I will be prepared for the sight of dirty cars.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Flying High

Ushuaia Autumn 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
Today I went flying and it was just magic.

The last few days have been very mild and so still, that it seemed like a good idea at the time, and so I went. There is an Aero Club here and they take flights over the city and the mountains.The decision was galvanised this morning when I saw the smoke from all the Asados( bar-b-ques) over the city, and more importantly from the downstairs neighbour, where los perros live. That signalled that the family would be sitting in the drive for most of the pm. enjoying a "peaceful" asado, with 2 1/2 dogs going ballistic a full 3 feet away. The 3rd dog is still pretty sick, so I don't think he can bark at the moment. So, decided that I had to go for my walk, so why not walk to the Aero Club and ask?

What a great decision! Decided to hang the expense and go for an hour. The day was just perfect, no wind, lots of sunshine and blue skies with just a few clouds. The flight took us up past Mt Olivia along the valley of Route 3 past Cero Castor - the ski fields and over the mountains to Lago Fagnano, the large inland lake. Inland is a lot more snow covered, with many of the rivers frozen already. With the mild weather a lot of the snow around the city has disappeared. It was very beautiful, and there are lots of high close to the summits. We flew back over the mountains, and along the coast to Harberton Estacion, where I went by road a few weeks ago, and the back up the Beagle Channel past Puerto Williams, which is the southernmost "town" - the Argentinians argue that it's not a city and therefore they still claim the southernmost city for Ushuaia - just more of the not so friendly rivalry that exists between Argentina and Chile.

As we came back up the centre of the Beagle the pilot asked if I wanted to fly the plane- ¡ What a question,! did I ever! So I flew the little plane back up the middle of the Beagle Channel. What a BUZZ!!!

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Patient Posting

Ushuaia 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
I have become an expert in posting parcels from all over the world. That's because someone keeps adding rocks to my suitcase and I have to send them on to Oz, as on every weigh in my luggage is heavier, no matter how much I get rid of or post back.
Anyway, here in Ushuaia, it is a whole new experience. I would prefer to buy my box first, bring it home and pack it and then post it. Logical I would have thought, but here no, it's a little more complicated, as every parcel sent has to be inspected by the Aduana - Customs. So everyone arrives at the Correo with all their goodies to post, buys their box, or with their own in hand and waits for the lovely man to come and inspect. He flips through everything, books, the DVDs, inside shoes, clothing, etc whatever is being sent. It's a pretty cursory inspection and I'm not quite sure what he is looking for, but it's the same for everyone for parcels big and small. Then he leaves you to wrap, and for me supplies the papers to fill in to send OS. Those sending presents come armed with gift wrap, ribbon etc, and everyone has the obligatory brown paper, unless you buy a box, and the sticky tape. The post office resounds to the sound of tape being torn off the roll and stuck to boxes. At this stage it would be possible to include anything in the parcel as it's not checked again.
Then it's into the line to post your parcel, and this takes a while. There is only one man on the desk and he sort of fuddles around a lot of the time. Every parcel is weighed and measured, not exactly measured as he only has a small ruler, which he sort of quickly moves from place to place, except of course for mine, they are calculated to the last centimeter. I can't quite understand this bit because I buy my boxes from him, and I would have thought they were a standard size, but who am I to question?
I have actually managed to convince them to sell me boxes in advance in the promise that I will return in a day or two to post them. I bought two the other day, then walked over to the packing tables and, much to the horror of all, disassembled them. They are much easier to carry home flat. "Tourists" do strange things! But I know better than some of the locals who arrive with their boxes wrapped, sealed and ready to go and then have to pull them all apart for the inspection. Even had to lend my scissors to a guy today to get through the tape on his box.
But, in favour of the Argentinian Correo, two boxes I posted recently arrived on the doorstep in Oz almost before they left here. They only took a week, and that was with Anzac Day holiday, and the day lost travelling West. So there you go, the trip to Oz is almost quicker than my trip to the Post Office.

Sunday, May 06, 2007

El Almacen: Tienda Generales Ushuaia

The Grocer Shop: brings back great memories for me, my dad was a grocer and had a little shop containing lots of the same things. It's now a café, but when the new owners opened the door they found all the stock still in place. There are lots of things you may recognise, I certainly do: the advertisements, the biscuit tins which used to contain loose biscuits you bought by the pound, the scales, the old cash register, the ladder that narrows at the top. Lots of wonderful nostalgia and also includes also a collection of old musical instruments, a gramophone, children's toys, tools, sewing machines, kerosene heaters and flat irons. It even includes the family photos that were left behind. Just wonderful.

Saturday, May 05, 2007

Oh For a Humble Plastic Aussie Veggie Peeler!

Just finished preparing my warming, nourishing soup as it tries very hard to snow out there, and once again wishing I had remembered to pack a packet of veggie peelers. You know the ones? usually come in packets of 3, with brightly coloured handles so you can find them in the crowded cutlery drawer, found in supermarkets and are very cheap.
Every time I am travelling I remember my promise to myself on the last trip to pack some, but then you just forget all about it until it comes to veggie peeling time. I have tried all sorts of peelers in lots of countries, including the fancy, expensive types in Australia, but have never found one to match them.
The Argentinian one I have now only works when you peel away from yourself and only peels small bits at a time so usually I end up with tiny pieces of peel all over the kitchen. The Aussie ones work well both way, and I like to peel towards myself. Using an Aussie plastic peeler, if you are very talented you can peel a whole potato or an apple in one long strip. Absolutely no chance with this peeler. Sometimes I resort to a knife, but they are pretty hopeless also, and half the potato or carrot ends up in the rubbish, or with I end up with serrated fingers where I miss.
I always pack the coffee plunger, just can't find good coffee here to put in it. Believe it all not, ALL the ground coffee has added sugar. I bought some back from Ecuador but am rationing that.
I will have to put a couple of packets of peelers in my case, you just never know when you will need a good peeler

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Festival Internaciónal de Ushuaia

The 3rd International Classical Music Festival en Del Fin Del Mundo, and what a delight it has been. The 3 concerts I attended were glorious and the setting magnificent. The crowning achievement of the Festival was the presence of the Berlin Symphony Orchestra with it's director, an Argentinian, who brought the audience to their feet at every performance. It was also wonderful to see the people of Ushuaia in another light, many in the best gear and "beautiful", although the concerts weren't cheap and out of range for many. There were free concerts for Fueguinos, which were packed out. I had a lesson on all aspects of Classical music on a return taxi ride. My taxista gave me a complete rundown on composers, orchestras and musicians in a 15 minute journey home. Not sure my Spanish was really up to it, but it didn't matter.
Combined with the 1st Bienal, a Contemporary Art Festival,(click on the photo to check the Bienal set) the town has been pretty lively for the last few weeks. All culminates tonight with a fireworks spectacular, weather permitting! It's been snowing out there.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

A Good Airline Story

This one amazed me, and after having a go at Aerolineas, just have to add this one. This time with TAME, an Ecuadorian airline.
One the trip from Quito to the Galapagos, a trip of several hours ish!, after the flurry of providing the in-flight refreshment, the staff asked a passenger to press the call button. Turned out to be a very tall American jazz pianist sitting just in front of me. Several minutes later all the flight attendants came up from the rear of the plane with - believe it or not- a birthday cake, with which they duly presented him and then sang Happy Birthday. He was in total shock, as were the majority of the passengers and had no idea just how it all happened as he was travelling solo. I can't imagine just where they produced the cake from - they did cut it, I think, but as far as I know no-one had any. But it certainly was a personal touch!

Friday, April 20, 2007

Out in the Cold

Odd One Out
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
Those that have read Perrocide in Ushuaia and my emails, will wonder at this post, but I actually feel very sorry for this guy. All morning it has rained and intermittently snowed - so it's not very warm out there. Three dogs live in this backyard???? and the other two are occupying the only places of shelter, one kennel and the shed. Neither will let this guy anywhere near them and he has wandered hopelessly back and forth trying to get in. He is actually not all that steady on his feet, I don't know if it's the weight of the sodden coat or he's not well and much as these animals drive me crazy, I hate to see an animal suffer. This one is only a follower of the top dog, who is the one occupying the shed - naturally. May have to talk to the owner again.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Bienal Ushuaia 2007

Bienal Ushuaia 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
This is art; the recorded message inside the car wasn't playing very well, so I am not sure just what it explained, but I am sure there is an explanation. Ushuaia is having it's first Bienal, a Contemporary Art Festival and there are some fascinating works of art which I have been enjoying. Won't say I understand them all, maybe it's a language thing? But then contemporary art has never really been my thing. Check out some of the other works of art, just click on the picture.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

The Ambush

The Ambush
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
I saw it coming, as the newcomer strutted into the middle of the road and the challengers came from all sides. Unfortunately I was a little slow with the camera and only got the 2 shots as the attack came and went and they all headed in my direction. I forgot about the photos and headed for safety, but it was all over except for the licking of the wounds and the crowing or barking of the victors`

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Casa del Lago

Galápagos March 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
If you are looking for something different, and the Galápagos Islands are certainly that, then a stay at Casa del Lago will complete the experience. Such a change from hotels, Elena and Enrique provide a quirky, comfortable place from which to enjoy Puerto Ayora. They have constructed their home, the Cafe Cultural and 2 apartments from re-cycled materials providing a charming refuge. My apartment had it's own terrace overlooking the garden, and the other apartment had access to a lovely garden setting. All types of materials have been used in the construction giving it a charm all of it's own.
As hosts they are most accommodating and Elena's experience as a travel guide, and her wonderful English ensure a her guests information and assistance to enjoy this amazing paradise.
They are also talented musicians and organise many cultural and musical events for Puerto Ayora. The Cafe has great vegetarian food and the best home made ice cream and the only REAL coffee I found on the island. If you can't stay there, at least visit for the coffee and ice-cream and the welcome.
For more photos just click on the photo.
You can find them at:

Ripped Off In Quito

Quito March 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
A beautiful old city, bustling with people, life and constant activity and unfortunately the ever present thieves. Not that this isn't true of just about every city in the world, it's just that I have never been the recipient before! Been a couple of attempts, but this was the only successful one and my lovely new camera, capable of those underwater shots in the Galapagos went to the local market for re-sale. The frustrating thing about it all, is that the 1GB card had lots of great shots after a very busy morning people watching, and I guess some one local was tourist watching waiting for just the right moment. As I raised the camera for another shot it was snatched from my hands and both the guy and camera disappeared off down the street, right past the lovely young policeman that I reported it to. He could even describe the thief and tell me he had something in his hand!
Later in the day I wandered around the local market - floors and floors of goods of questionable origin and it makes you wonder what one does with a camera, phone, computer etc that comes box less, without instructions, charger, cables etc, etc. I didn't see my camera, a bit early for that , but I am sure it was there within hours if not days. I wonder if I would have bought it back? Now what do I do with all the cables, spare battery, chargers etc etc? as you have probably noticed, absolutely none of them are interchangeable, even within the same brand and it seems criminal to throw them into yet more landfill. Maybe I should have sold them at the market.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

La Lucha No Termino The Falklands/Malvinas

Ushuaia Autumn 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
It is fact that this forlorn archipelago was the last of the great discoveries in the West to be settled by Europeans, although it is uncertain who first saw the islands. The French colonized them, but the Spanish asserted territorial proximity rights from mainland south America. The British were there after the French moved out and the Argentinians did have a garrison there which the British displaced in 1833 and that was that as far as the Brits were concerned. The islanders consider themselves British to the core even though the Argentines have continued to claim the rights to the Islands since the Brtish moved in. "Las Malvinas fueron, son y serán Argentinas"- the Malvinas were, are and will be Argentinian is the catch cry that all Argentinians are raised with and that nationalism, pride and honour are still very strong in the claim and as the posters that appeared all over town proclaim - "la lucha no termino" -the struggle has not finished.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

The Joys of Aerolineas Argentinas

Airline travel can provide a test of patience and involve long waits, but I think that Aerolineas Argentina must hold the record for flight delays, strikes and challenges in general . After returning to Ushuaia with Aerolineas I remember why I choose to fly with other airlines whenever it is possible!
The trip started in Quito, when LAN informed me there was no way my luggage could be sent through to Buenos Aires and would go to Santiago, from where I would have to collect it and recheck it. Fair enough, except that one’s luggage is outside, through immigration and I am inside in the Transit area. To exit and collect it means immigration, a reciprocal tax of $56 and an exit tax of $16 – not an option! Easy they say, go to the Aerolineas counter and get them to collect the luggage, except there is no Aerolineas desk and in the early hours of the morning it’s not easy to find anyone to help. Bless the lovely young lady in the Diners Club lounge, she spent some time on the telephone chasing down the luggage through Aerolineas. I wasn’t the only one, there was a couple from Guatemala with the same challenge. Finally, about 30 minutes before the flight departure we were handed our boarding passes with, we hoped, appropriate luggage collection tags. We were all very pleased to see our luggage on the carousel in Buenos Aires.
That was followed by an expensive Remis journey across Buenos Aires to the Domestic Terminal for the scheduled departure of my flight to Ushuaia. Might as well have walked! 8 hours later the flight departed Buenos Aires with a plane full of rather disgruntled travellers. All the flights on Saturday afternoon displayed the red Demorado – delayed notice, on the board and during the course of the day several were cancelled with no explanation. Several flights scheduled for later than mine departed for Ushuaia and still no explanation. Finally when we boarded they told us that seating was free – as the plane had been changed, which, as you can imagine caused even more problems as it was literally a case of first on best seats! I was lucky I was on early, after being squashed onto the bus last and so amongst the first off – so I had a front seat with all that lovely leg room. But couples were separated and there were lots of unhappy people.
We arrived in Uhuaia at 2.30 am, my luggage was almost last off and so I had a long wait for a taxi – in the cold, and after Galapagos it was cold! Finally made it back to my flat at 3.30 after 2 nights with little sleep.
Don’t think I will travel Aerolineas again in a hurry! I have to return to Buenos Aires with Aerolineas, but think I will ditch the flight to Santiago to connect for the return to Oz and buy a single with LAN – they are much more reliable!

Monday, April 02, 2007

The Dance of the Boobies

Galápagos March 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
What a wonderful spectacle and so very comical, with the large blue feet being an integral part of the performance. The feet are lifted one at a time in a solemn ritualised dance and resemble a clown with those extra large shoes. The pair then “skypoint”, which involves pointing their tails and beaks upwards and half opening their wings and honking or whistling. Honking for the female and whistling for the male. The whole performance can continue for quite a while and is wonderful to watch..
Watching them fishing is yet another fantastic spectacle. They cruise quite high above the sea and often commence their dive from as high as 10 – 15 metres. As they dive to accelerate they fold their wings and hit the water like an arrow or a kamikaze pilot

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Ushuaia Summer 2007????

Ushuaia Summer 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
It's only March and already we have had a full day of snow in the town. The temperature didn't get above 1C and the snowflakes were seriously big! I am still new enough to a cold and snow environment to find it enchanting. I wonder how long that will last?
The surrounding mountains were covered with a layer of snow reaching down into town. But 2 days later the temperature was back in the teens and the snow has all but disappeared.
Summer in Ushuaia!

Extra Terrestrials?

Ushuaia Summer 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
Just loved these clouds? as they hovered over the town for what seemed like a very long time. Were they landing, photographing or just checking?

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

! Un Desastre !

A total disaster, I am distraught, devastated, gutted and every other disaster word you can think of. My iPod, the original trusted one with ALL my music has crashed and I can't restore it. Here in Ushuaia at least. Whether it is possible eventually with the dock, I don't know, but here no, ¡ and I have another 7 months ! The computer recognises it on the USB cable, but won't restore it without using the Firewire cable and of course using the firewire cable the computer doesn't recognise it. I think I am going to cry - seriously cry. It is my constant companion on my walks to the school. I am blessed and thank all there is that I still have most of the music on my computer - the rest is scattered all over OZ - will be tracking down those CD's when I get back. Technology is great until it fails. I have just bought some DVDs to back up all the photos and the music I have on the computer, as it has been chucking some pretty interesting turns lately.
I am going to go off and cry now, excuse me.

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

¡Un Beso!

Everyone, yes absolutely everyone here in Argentina greets each other with un beso o un besito, such a lovely custom, but not one we westerners are always all that comfortable with. Today I went to the dentist with a serious crown problem and the first thing the dentist does is darme un beso, a kiss on the cheek. Now my dentist in Oz and I are on cheek kissing terms, but we have known each other for years, but here in Argentina, perfect strangers, on introduction exchange , besos, right cheek to right cheek. And then again on every meeting and departure. And that includes guy to guy. I have seen a few western guys a little spooked by that one! It's lovely, it means you get to actually have contact with other people on a very regular basis, so different to our "no touch society", that is getting worse not better.
And if you are not in actual physical contact other forms of contact also include un beso: via the telephone, email or mail. ¡Just delightful!

Un beso Barb

Thursday, February 22, 2007

¿A New Business?

Ushuaia 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
I have decided I am not going to earn a fortune, or even pay my way with English Conversation classes, there seems to be a slight problem with commitment, and I am not surprised with the hours everyone works. But that's ok I can live with that. So have started a new business - las bufandas or scarves. They only take me about an hour or so and don't need needles - just my hands - very easy, and all the great yarns are coming into the shops now and even better, are cheap- so work has commenced. Don't expect to make my fortune at this either, but it will keep me out of trouble.

Monday, February 19, 2007

Estoy en el Cielo (in heaven)

Finally it's all in place and not only can I buy take away vegetarian delights, but also Tofu to cook at home. I am in heaven. The vegetarian food is wonderful, but I don't have a microwave and it doesn't reheat well. so now I have the best of both worlds. Who would have thought it in Ushuaia? Gracias a dios. Again I am Blessed.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Las Mujeres de Las Fotos

Isla Chiloé
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
Just loved these two. We first made acquaintance while waiting in the Travel Agent. Both were beautifully, if not a little oddly, dressed. That is compared to we in jeans and t-shirts, and were excitedly planning and booking their trips. Sure enough the next day we stopped outside their hotel and onto the bus they came, and off we all went to Isla Chiloé. They were from very north of Chile in the desert regions and were so excited with the tree, flowers and greenery, but what entertained me most were the "photo opportunities" The cameras or the video were certainly kept busy. I think before the bus even moved off at least a dozen photos were taken. Each posed in front of every possible item of interest - on the bus, on the ferry, in front of houses, churches, shops, trees, flowers, and they weren't just casual shots, they were all carefully posed, with the hair and make up just right. I had to wonder just how much they actually saw, as most time was spent photographing or assessing the photos just taken. And when they weren't photographing, one was on her mobile telling all her friends where they were or they were sleeping.
Loved 'em!

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Tren del Sur

Puerto Montt Chile 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
If you are ever travelling through Puerto Montt Chile, this is a great place to stay. A Boutique Hostal, beautifully constructed and containing many of the old materials from the railway and station. Being a lover of wood, it was great to see it so extensively used throughout. El dueno, Mario, is delightful and welcomes all his guest with a great deal of enthusiasm. Not too large, it offers a range of accommodations, with breakfast and many other services, including WIFI for we computer tragics. Give it a go.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

The Blessings of an Arco Iris

Summer Ushuaia 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
To see a rainbow, you first have to have rain, and that we have had plenty of. Then momentarily, comes the sun and a glorious arco iris, and those we have had lots of lately also. But the blessing of the rainbow is that when the rain comes down, los perros remain under cover, and the silence is as golden as the rainbow is brilliant.

I love rainbows.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

¡Posibilidad de Perrocide! ¡Muy Pronto!

Los Perros Ushuaia 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
There is really only one draw back to living in mi departamento. I can live with the hole in the bathroom roof, covered for now with cardboard, as my neighbour is on holidays, so no drips or cold air. I can live within the small space and with the multitude of power lines and ugly backyards spoiling magnificent views of the surrounding mountains, but I am having trouble living with this lot. And right on cue, they have started yet again. Not only are there these 3, but in the last week at least 5 cachorros have emerged to join the group. So far they have not learnt to bark, just whimper all night, but I am sure it won't take long.
Now if you look through the pictures, you will see what an attractive backyard it is,- not! And I can just imagine just how full of nasties it is - thank goodness it never gets that hot here. I imagine the smell could be horrendous.
Then there are the photos of the front of the house - where the small children play and the family entertains in view of all in the street. Last weekend, el dueno of the property was watching los niños playing out in the street, after having let one of the dogs out to join him. Naturally enough, the two remaining maniacs were going absolutely crazy, as they all do when there are family in the front of the house. So as I walked past I asked el dueno if there was any possibility of keeping them quiet. He seemed to think that was a totally unreasonable question, and told that they didn't bark at night, so what was my problem? other than the fact that one can't think, concentrate, hear any talking or my music - I really couldn't answer that one. Didn't matter what I said - in my best polite Spanish, he just shrugged his shoulders and said he wasn't going to fight about it or even discuss it.
So where do I go from here? Not all that sure on that one but I will certainly be weighing the options, especially if los cachorros join in the cacophony. Perrocide or suicide? Maybe I will just have to search for another place to live. Any suggestions???????

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Politics del fin del mundo

Had a laugh this morning reading the reports on the Nordkapp, the cruise ship that ran aground or hit an iceberg, not quite sure which yet, that have been in the local papers. Firstly, the Sydney Morning Herald seemed to be the first to have the story, all the local papers quoted the story yesterday. Now it seems that El comandante del Área Naval Austral, called a press conference to tell all that everything was in hand, but that was only after he read all about it in the local Diario. Apparently the Norwegians had not notified the local boys or asked for help, and as Argentina claims the Antarctic Peninsula as part of their territory, I think there are a few noses out of joint. And probably just to make matters worse he has had to notify the Chilean navy as they have a boat in the area in the event that the boat needs help getting back to Ushuaia. ¡The Argentinians and Chileans don't exactly get on! The passengers have all been offloaded onto a sister ship, which must be horrendously crowded and are heading back here. I wish them luck as it is absolutely blowing a gale today, and by the reports they will be fare and square in the middle of the Drake. I can't imagine anything worse! There will be some stories to come out of this one.

¿Verdaderamente Pobre? A City of Contrasts

Ushuaia 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
Situated in one of 35 barrios, or suburbs, this is just one example of the squatter housing that exists in the city. This is situated quite centrally and like all the other barrios of illegal housing, is supplied with power, water and gas by the local authorities!
I visited one of the squatter barrios just before new year with a Dutch photographer doing an article on migration from the very bottom of the Americas to the very top in Alaska. He believed that Barrio Escondido was populated by mainly Bolivians and Peruvians and wanted to find out just what brought them to Ushuaia.
It turned out to be a very interesting visit, but we met no Bolivians or Peruvians. The barrio was mainly populated by Argentines and the housing ranged from shacks constructed of anything salvageable, most of which is packing materials supplied by the big companies, to beautifully constructed homes. There were no roads or services, particularly sanitary services, but there was power, gas and some water supplied by the authorities.
The only problem with this scenario is that the majority of the people squatting there, and you have to remember that to do this they were cutting down native trees on the outskirts of the National Park and just setting up, were fully employed, and, ironically many in the local government. The homes contained televisions, computers and most of the mod cons. Unfortunately I didn't have my camera with me that day, so missed photos.
As you might imagine these barrios create some very interesting discussions! With those who work, pay taxes and save to buy a house and land a little miffed by the squatters. The squatters argue that the tourist trade has pushed up the rental costs and that they can't possibly pay the prices, but if I can find an apartment and pay local prices I am sure they can. Though I agree that apartments are few and far between it certainly seems easy enough to just go out chop down a few trees and start building.

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

It Finally Happened

A cruise ship ran aground in Antarctica. It was just a matter of time, as bigger boats are heading down every year, although this was a regular visitor. It is one of the big ones with 300 people on board, luckily there were no injuries and they managed move safely into refuge, but???

Monday, January 29, 2007

La Verdulería: Ushuaia 2007

La Verdulería :Ushuaia 2007
Originally uploaded by agypsy.
To my great delight, just before Christmas a new shop opened opposite mi casa, and best of all it was una Verdulería - a veggie shop. Being a vegetarian you can imagine my delight in a town of Asados - the local version of our barbie, the most popular being local lamb.Every weekend the suburbs disappear under a haze of smoke and the smell of cooking meat permeates all. Next door to La Verdulería está La Carnicería or butcher shop and on the other side is the La Quesería or cheese shop - so I have it all very close, not that I have visited the Carnicería! There are also 2 supermercados within 2 blocks. Don't need a car at all.
Today is fresh produce day, so all looks beautiful. Veggies here are usually pretty tired - a little like me. But with summer here there is some great fresh fruit and veggies, so, so far I am doin' ok