Sunrise from the 10th floor.
Quite the spread!
I ventured to get some of the thinly sliced meat and a strawberry yogurt, but there was an impressive array of pastries to choose from, along with cereal. I tried the meat (which I later identified as Prosciutto), but...I won't be doing that again. I was probably supposed to eat it on a croissant or something of that nature. It was very strongly flavored... I ate my yogurt and headed back upstairs after a bit.
Jen was awake and she told me about the folks that decided to go out last night for dinner. They got to the restaurant around 9:30 and didn't get back until a little after midnight. I usually eat an early dinner back home, so that might be one thing that I can't get used to here...dinner at 9 pm. It makes sense given the long commutes for most Argentines, but I don't know when they have time to sleep...
We're off to Estancia Santa Susana, an Argentine ranch, for what our tour guide calls a "country day" :) The plan is to have a traditional Argentine asado (barbecue/grill/cookout) in the country, watch some gauchos perform a show, and get to do a little riding ourselves. It's been a couple of years since I've been riding so it may be a bit painful to sit a horse. We'll have to see! I went a little crazy with the sunscreen since, though it's getting into fall here, the sun has been quite bright and goodness knows I have a bad habit of soaking in a bit too much of it...
I went back downstairs with Jen for breakfast and then we went on a quick wall around the block so that Jen could find a Diet Pepsi. We found a little shop and I found some cute postcards to send back home. They even had one of the brightly colored Caminita neighborhood that we visited yesterday.
We loaded onto the bus around 10 and started the drive to Las Cardeles in the Argentine Pampas, about an hour and a half away.
The first thing that put a damper on things was the overcast sky and light drizzle that had started. As we drove it started to rain so that by the time we arrived the ground was pretty well soaked. We were greeted with wine and empanadas (best so far!) and went inside to see the house and get directions to the various things to do. Estancia Santa Susana was founded by an Irish family that moved to Argentina in the early 1900s. The ranch has several buildings and the old family home has been converted into a museum. We toured the home and the chapel then went out back to the horses. It was raining so I decided not to go for the horseback riding or cart ride. Instead we sat inside and talked in our group whil Prof. Sicina worked on his book.
Lunch was served around 1 pm and we were offered every type of meat from the traditional chorizo (sausage), to beef tenderloin, chicken, and several other meats that I was too full to try. Heather used dinner as an opportunity to learn some new phrases in Spanish. Jared used dinner as an opportunity to teach Heather some hilarious new phrases like: "Necessito un gaucho grande". I have some great video on my Glass of the hilarity that ensued when Heather tried out some of her new phrases.
After dinner we got to see a show where some dancers performed some traditional Argentine dances from the region including one where the dancer used the gaucho bolas (traditional hunting/snaring tool with three leather-covered rocks on ropes) to keep time as he danced. I got some great pictures.
Later the gauchos asked several of the ladies to dance and Heather's new friend pulled her out on the dance floor. We had a lot of fun. Since the weather was still pretty bad we decided not to stay for the horsemanship demonstration and headed back to town.
When we got back Jennifer and I went on a walk down the block to the supermarcado to pick up some fruit, which was necessary after the lunch of red meat we just had... We picked up some fruit, snacks, and some Alfajores, a chocolate covered cookie filled with dulce de leche that is very popular in Argentina. We headed back to the hotel and had some snacks before heading to the gym to run off some of the calories from today.
Alfajors. 200 calories worth of awesome.
After my run I felt a little better about pigging out at the estancia and eating an alfajor after our trip to the supermarcado. Jen headed out to eat dinner (I just can't get used to eating in the middle of the night) while I relaxed and got ready for a long day tomorrow. We're going to be going to three meetings and then a tango dinner and show until midnight. Safe bet that I'll fall asleep in my dinner tomorrow.