Small Things

On a long bus ride you will receive boxed food. I mentioned already the hot meal on the overnight trip from Buenos Aires to Mendoza. In the morning, we received a breakfast box. On both legs of our ida y veuleta Santiago-Mendoza  trip, and on the overnight trip Mendoza to Cordoba we also received breakfast boxes. Here is what they consist of: an alfajor (that sandwich cookie I wrote about before); a package of what are called biscocho de grasa, which are tasty and savory, not sweet; 2 packages of sugar, a napkin, and either instant coffee or a coffee bag (you know, like a tea bag, but with coffee – it’s terrible); a tea bag; a plastic stirrer.

Our bus at Argentina aduana.


Lunch on a long leg consists of either a ham and cheese sandwich or a chicken paste sandwich, also accompanied by an alfajor. Hey, it’s the national cookie. The box also contains everything else that’s in the breakfast box, minus the biscocho de grasa.

Movies are provided during the day or leaving earlier in the evening. I’ve noticed that they fall into 2 camps: a comedy chic flic and an action packed, shoot-em-up flic. One for the gals and one for the guys, I guess. I’ve watched two of them, both silly, but as they are in Spanish, I appreciate the practice.

Waiting for a bus can be a little harrowing. You purchase your ticket and are then told a range of platforms in which the bus might park. So you watch for your bus company, keeping an eye on platforms 10-20, say and reading the bus signs for destination and departure time. Actually, it was only a little nervous making the first few times. I have no qualms about asking the bus driver for clarification.

Santiago is about 1/3 the size of Buenos Aires and it feels it. Really. 10 million people make a big difference.

I got attacked by the bogus “bird poo” scam again in the Mendoza bus station. I felt a spray on the back of my head. A woman sidled up and with a sympathetic smile said, “Birds.” I looked her in the eye and said, “No son los pájaraos, es una persona,” with derision in my tone, eyeing her suspiciously. She took off at quite a clip.

Leaving Argentina for Chile and leaving Chile for Argentina, we did not go through passport control – no exit stamps.

In Argentina, they will add the “servicio” to the bill, but you can’t include it on the credit card. You must leave cash. In Chile and Uruguay, the “propina” is added and you can pay it via credit card. In both countries, they ask if you’d like to add it. It’s a standard 10%.

I am so behind that I won’t attempt to write about our last day or two in Chile. Charlie has that covered. And as these last days in Colanchanga I have not had adequate or prolonged access to internet, I’m off on that count. But I will write a bit about Colanchanga in the next post. We are in Rio Ceballos, having brunch at a cafe with good wifi, so here I come.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s