Ruta 40 - Day 2
El Bolson Travel Blog› entry 37 of 71 › view all entries
Despite the saggy mattress and the bathroom-like odor in our room, I slept ok at Hotel Belgrano.
I woke up at 6:30am to make sure I had time to shower and eat before our 7:45am bus departure. Of course, at 7:35am I decided that maybe I needed a bit more cash. So despite my tired legs (still tired from "H" hike), I made another dash - this time literally - up the street to the ATM. Then raced back to catch the bus just in time. That would really suck if I got stuck in Perito Moreno... it should NOT be on anyone´s destination list. =)
Today we had another 130km of unpaved Ruta 40 (yesterday was something like 700km of unpaved road), and then the rest of the way would be paved.
We had new drivers today, btw, Eduardo and Javier. Monica was still with us. And I had a different seat. Yesterday I was in the middle of the bus. Today I was in the front row! Seat numer 2, the aisle seat right behind the driver. The good news was this afforded me a great view of Ruta 40 and surrounding landscape. The bad news is that I sat next to a gentleman who was very nice, but who had very bad breath. Now this might have been tolerable, except for the fadt that he insisted on talking to me.
Ok, I´m being a bit cruel. He WAS nice enough to slug me in the leg and holler "Armadillo! Armadillo!" (I had complained to him that yesterday I missed the armadillo sighting as one of the little creatures scrambled across the road in front of the bus. So today, when another one crossed the road, Mr. Bad Breath tried to point it out to me - but I still missed it. Damn.)
I can´t think of much else about this bus ride...Oh, wait. We did get to watch Bourne Ultimatum on the video monitors - so that was cool! It took us a while to figure out how to get English language audio without the director´s commentary, and Spanish subtitles. But a skinny geeky video game junkie from silicon valley saved the day.
We arrived in El Bolson at 5pm. The Dutch girls and I hopped off and headed to the tourist information station to get the low down on hostels. After getting a town map and touring a couple of different hostels, we settled on El Molinito. The most interesting thing about this place is it had a shared bathroom. And when I say shared, I mean shared. Two toilets, two sinks, two showers - in a 10x15 room - boys and girls all together. Fun.
After checking in, the three of us headed out to dinner at Jauja - a nearby restaurant, but also somehow linked to the locally famous ice cream maker Jauja. In fact, the heladeria (ice cream shop) was adjacent to the restaurant.
We then toured the bars of El Bolson, starting with a place called the Boulevard.
On our way home, we stopped in the park at the town center and befriended the cutest street dog (puppy) I´ve ever seen. Now I was careful not to pet this little guy, but the girls could just not resist. Fortunately - so far - no ill effects ... no biting, no fleas, etc. The dog followed us to the next bar, El Sol. We had a drink there, but lost energy quickly and headed home. As we left, we noticed the cute little dog was curled up outside the bar waiting for us. Some of us gave it a final petting, then we headed back to the hostel. Without the dog.
This reminds me - when I get home I have to get a dog.