March 2 – 3
After a busy weekend, we spend most of Monday relaxing. In the evening, we meet our cruise friends Debra and Gene and their friends, who are passing through BA on their way back to the States, for dinner at El Marisol, a parilla; i.e. a steakhouse. David claims that they served him the best "lomo" (Argentinian version of filet mignon) he has had in Argentina to date! We also enjoyed a couple of bottles of a great Malbac and caught up on Gene & Debs trekking travels at El Chaltan and Fitz Roy. Two places we really want to go to next year and try some more glacier trekking!
Next morning, we are still full from last night’s dinner, so at we go to the Melody Café with the intention of getting a light breakfast. We think we are ordering the usual…tostadas, which is probably yesterday’s baguette sliced and toasted. But what they hear is tostados, which are crust-less ham and cheese sandwiches. So we each end up with 4 of these sandwiches. Our light breakfast turns into the equivalent of a very full lunch. But more importantly, this reinforces our experience that even a slight nuance in pronunciation can affect an outcome. Attention to detail is a must!
Later in the day, we buy colorful cotton throw rugs (actually, they are horse blankets – new, not used!! – that are typically used under saddles) to cheer up the apartment. We also go to Disco, our local supermarket, because we’re having our first “dinner party”.
As we are shopping, we realize that in the last 2 weeks, prices in general have increased by from 10-20%. You can actually see prices rising weekly. So, while the dollar is getting stronger here the price increases are only partially mitigated by the dollars strength against the peso.
In anticipation of our dinner guest, we break out the good (oh, I mean only) dishes, heat up barbequed chicken, serve it with onion and pumpkin tortes, fresh tomatoes, repollitos de Bruselas (Brussels sprouts), bread and, of course, a bottle of Malbec. Finally, a home-cooked meal!
And, believe it or not, we regret not having brought saran wrap with us from home! That’s because saran wrap here is just awful. It is very thin and there is no serrated edge on the box, so every time you want to use it, you have to find the end and peel it away from the roll. I can’t tell you how frustrating this is. It takes at least two people to wrap things in order to not lose the end of the roll!
We decide to keep it out and balanced on the toaster, slightly unrolled, so we won’t have to deal with finding the edge and peeling it back every time we use it…but the maid, who comes on Tuesdays and Fridays, rolls it back up and puts it in the box. Oh well – it sounded like a good plan at the tiime.