A week in Mendoza has been well spent - about three days of letting my body recover, a few days of having the apartment to myself, and another three packing and getting ready for the next expedition.
I went running a bunch, including one three-hour day in the HOT sun - boy was I thirsty, but the run (OK, I walked up the hills) was good. Into the desert
on tilted plains above Mendoza, mountains on one side, city down below. Cooked real vegetarian food in the apartment kitchen, wandered around town a bit, and managed not to spend any money. Places to go with that dinero...
Things I love about Mendoza (I won't presume to all of Argentina):
- People will randomly help you bring groceries in from a taxi, etc, just to be nice!
- I can go running without offending anyone, unlike many foreign cities (Delhi, Mexico City).
- Taxis and fresh summer fruit are cheap!
Things I hate about Mendoza:
- The checkers at the grocery store might be the slowest moving service people I have seen. Ever.
- Absolutely everything involves meat. Even Oreos - in the States, vegan. Here, they have beef fat in them. Seriously!
- And, yes, it was 103 degrees today (39 C).
But at least it is a dry heat (aside from the occasional thunderstorm), and the huge shade trees the city was built around make things bearable if you're near a ceiling fan. The pace of life is slow, which makes burning a week here pretty manageable. And the wine is good.
So really a good week all around, and it will be good to head back to the mountain. A small group this time, one of whom I've climbed with before - should be good. We're off to the mountain on Sunday, back in a couple weeks! Track us - Team 10 - at http://www.alpineascents.com/aconcagua-cybercast.asp