Saturday, January 28, 2006

Fall On Me

Igaucu Falls, Argentina

Her Majesty Miss Karen,

The OC cut out of Buenos Aires by overnight bus the day after wishing a fond farewell to the Briceno clan. We made straight for the city of Iguacu with the intention of viewing the frickin' huge waterfalls nearby and then crossing the border into Brazil. We spent our first day in town relaxing over an extended lunch with a young Scot by the name of Claire. She lost a bet over the nationality of birth of one Mr. Tony Blair (Scottish) and agreed to join us the next day at the falls. We also made friends with our waitress who recommended a little salsa joint for evening entertainment. It was a jumping place with some serious dancers. I was personally too scared to set foot on the dancefloor for fear of serious embarrassment. We turned in around one to get an early start on the falls.

The OC was out of bed and at the bus station at 08:00, but no Claire. The Scot had welshed. Undeterred by this treachery, we jumped the next shuttle and were at the park for about 09:00. We were not the only ones. It being a weekend during peak travel season, the place was crawling with other foreign tourists and Argentine families. The facilities were first rate and everything very well organized, though, so the crowds were not that much of a bother. Following the advice of a ticket vendor at the bus station, we hopped immediately on a little train up the river then followed a series of steel catwalks over the water. The path ended in a large platform with a stunning view over the edge of the falls. The noise drowned out conversation and the mist sometimes drowned out vision. It was quite a site. The falls straddle the border, so this was also our first glimpse of Brazil.

After a quick lunch, we started the "adventure tour" part of the program. This came in two parts. The first bit was a jungle safari on the back of a truck. We did not see any animals of note, but we did get a first look at the high density of plant life and plant diversity in the jungle. The growth on either side of the road was in places like a green wall of competing trees and bushes, each growing on top of another. At the terminus of the safari, we walked down some steps to a little dock and boarded a speedy little boat. It took us up river and directly into the spray, noise, and churn at the base of the smaller falls. It was good, wet fun.

The speed boat dropped us off near another little dock where we caught a free shuttle to an island strategically located in the middle of the river. We spent some time on a little beach swimming (Jason) and drying out (Mike) before climbing up steep stairs to check out the views from higher up. At the main vantage point, we ran into some folks that had been on the same Navimag ferry as The OC in Chile. This is the second time in so many weeks. There is a lot of itinerary inbreeding among the Patagonian backpacker set it seems. The rest of the afternoon was spent exploring more catwalks and walking paths providing views of the falls from every conceivable angle. We finally gave up and headed back when my resistance to the heat and mosquitoes failed. It is hot in the jungle.

The next day, we crossed into Brazil as planned. There is another park on that side of the falls, but we decided to give it a miss. There is such a thing as too much waterfall.

2 Comments:

Blogger Juan C Nuno said...

Assuming this is Eric.

Dude. I am the biggest gutless yellow turd. If *I* can get on the dance floor, anyone can.

And I ain't talking about East Coast that I've been doing for about a year now. Christina (from dance class) told me about Lindy Groove two blocks from my house. This gem of swing two blocks from my house that I might have to leave soon.

Anyhoo, took the Lindy crash course, and was able to show Christina and Isable what I learned!

So yeah, it's never about embarrassment or skill. It's about having fun.

2/10/2006 5:14 PM gmt

 
Blogger jason said...

Not Erik. All non-necesary staff have left the building.
The OC is back down to its fighting weight.

2/10/2006 8:04 PM gmt

 

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