Aug. 8, 2018

Buses on strike

Aug 8- We checked in to La Casa de Arriba hostel. Not realizing it is located on a major busy city street, we were a bit overwhelmed with noise. The smell of marijuana smoke hung heavy in the air as we signed the house rules, one of which stated, "it is forbidden to smoke inside the hostel." Hmmm, somebody is committing a forbidden act here...

It was late, our broke down bus and extended ride put us into Rosario in the evening. To late to find a new hostel now. So we heated up some water and had rehydrated chicken and rice for dinner with two beers. Not bad, but we were tired. We fell asleep listening to an audible book on hiking the Appalachian Trail.

There's got to be a cat housed in this hostel. I awoke with a swollen right eye. I'm very allergic to cats and marijuana smoke. So between the two, I wasn't feeling so hot this morning. We walked to the bus station and the wind was whipping thru the streets. The fresh air helped clear up my allergic reaction. That was good.

We got to the bus station and went to Empreza bus ticket office. A sign posted said they were closed. Several other bus ticket offices said the same. Odd. Then we saw a channel 3 news crew interviewing people in front of the closed offices. Well, Empreza is the only bus that goes from Rosario to San Antonio de Areca.

Off to the information booth we went. Thru a phone translator held up against the information office window by the agent, we read "Empreza bus is on strike. Indefinitely."

Great. No other bus goes there. We went back to the tv reporter. I spoke to him and said, Hi, we're from Alaska and we're stuck in Rosario because of this strike. He handed his mike to the cameraman and said, " come with me. " So we followed the news reporter around the bus terminal as he spoke with several bus companies to plead our plight. No luck. We went to the information office again and he spoke with them.

Once done, he turned and said, "sorry, no buses. Come back tomorrow. "

Sigh.... Okay. On our way back to the hippie hostel, we saw a McDonalds. Interested in whether or not a cheeseburger tastes the same here as it does in the States, we ventured in to a scene of pandemonic chaos. Crowds of people pushing and moving to order food. The loudspeaker played loud Argentinean music to add to the surreal chaotic atmosphere. We persisted and got a few burgers. They taste the same...