Tomrrow will be a 'flying' holiday for me. I will be heading out to Buenos Aires, Argentina with Carlos Fontes, who has a Fulbright appointment at the Catholic University there.
My general plan is to connect with my daughter Mariel, relax, heal, learn and dance more Tango, and learn and speak more Spanish. (Trying to work the aging body and brain!). Mariel is a UMass Junior in Commonwealth College and College of Natural Sciences, on the Deans List, and on an API semester abroad program there until June 25th, her 21st birthday!
This is the first time in MANY, many years that I will be away from a home base for more than a month. I am grateful to have wonderful people in and around my home to care for it and enjoy the springtime here, while we head into fall down there.
The basic plan:
Friday: Arrive in Buenos Aires and meet up with my daughter Mariel and do the business of settling in. If we are not too exhausted, Mariel has already invited us to attend a tango event that evening at the Confiteria Ideal, a vintage ballroom.
Saturday, sleep in, and perhaps join my daughter at a monthly Lindy Hop Swing dance event. This is an American dance that has grown in popularity around the world. There is a large community of mostly young dancers in Argentina. I introduced my daughter to this dance when she was 13 and she has shot up to become one of the most advanced and creative dancers on the scene and is able to find community many places world-wide. She has demonstrated and taught vintage social dance moves to the Amherst and UMass community. I have not quite retired to the sidelines, and will get up to boogie and Charleston when the 'spirit moves', albeit usually to the slower, more bluesy music.
A Bollywood Festival Sunday? Apparently there is a large Indian population in BA.
We leave for Patagonia on Tuesday, which is in the Southern part of Argentina. It is windy and wintry there, and we hope to climb glaciers, take in mountain vistas (parts of the Andes), encounter lots of wildlife, perhaps penguins, and visit Tierra del Fuego - the End of the World ( as close as you can get to Antarctica). We also plan to explore the Lake district of Bariloche which is considered to be like Switzerland (It has lots of Germans and European influences).
Patagonia is also known for lamb, beef, beer, and chocolate!
I have long been curious about this part of the world since buying my first Patagonia fleece, although with all the ice and 'roof glaciers we had this winter, you might wonder why we head for more and not someplace tropical :). That will come later.
Between April and May, I will study and explore around Buenos Aires and take mini trips to places like Colonia, Uruguay, Tigre (a delta north of BA), and some ranches - 'Estancias'.
In May we plan to go see Iguazu Falls on the border of Brazil and Paraguay. This spectacular network of 275 falls is depicted in the film 'The Mission, and you can see some images here.