Saturday, February 11, 2006

El Calafate still!

"Downtown" El Calafate

7:30 p.m.

A forced rest today, my body still in a very delicate state. Went to the pharmacy for some lozenges to reduce the coughing. Worked on the internet for four hours, then took a break for lunch at “Casablanca”: a hamburgesa completo (topped with ham and hard-boiled egg) and fries.

The perception of a place is so much a function of my inner state, more than a reflection of any reality. Today, (with the help of a hearty meal) I found the town less repulsive and was even inspired to return to the hotel for my camera.

Walking up the hill to the hotel, I was greeted with the spectacle of an enormous tour bus parked out front. A group of seniors had arrived. (I don’t use the term in a derogatorily any more, since I’m practically there!)

At the hotel, I found this HUGE tour bus parked out front

Heavy-duty protection against Ruta 40's flying stones

Outside "Casablanca" restaurant in El Calafate, where I had stopped for lunch. Proper trekking fashion is essential.

"Cordero al asador", the traditional roasting of lamb "a la cruz", on a cross, over an open wood fire

Part of my important research, sampling chocolates throughout Argentina. Typically, the chocolates are produced on a marble slab, the components layered, then the sheet of chocolate is cut into portions.

More in-depth research, probing behind the scenes at "Dulce Lugar" artisan chocolate shop

This evening, I’m waiting to use the only internet connection for laptops that I know of in this town. In the mean time, I'm standing and have my computer set up on a curio shelf. They have fifteen stations at this internet café and the place is jammed. It will be interesting to see what market solution develops for travelers. It can’t continue this way for long.


Tim Spires said...

I bet these gourmet chocolates could easily take a hefty chunk from your daily budget. The bad thing is, I could almost justify it.

timtraveler said...

Prices in Argentina are refreshingly low! This enabled me to do extensive research!

Anonymous said...

4 comments (moved here due to post consolidation):

Dicky Neely said...

That is such a beautiful town! It reminds of somewhere in Northern Cal years ago.

timtraveler said...

Some of the cars look like California years ago!

Dicky Neely said...

Hmmmm! Me gusta mucho chocolate!

timtraveler said...

Yo tom bien!