An early morning call at 6.30am – Paul was so pleased. It didn’t take long to get our things together and check out of the hotel. Only seems like yesterday we arrived!! No prebooked transfer on the way back, so the doorman hailed a yellow taxi from the street. There are different colour taxis for difference parts of the city – yellow will take you out to the airport. The sun was beating down this early in the morning – it was a beautiful day! Sunglasses out, and we set off for the aiport. And the driver was right from last night – the traffic is now going a different way to what it was when we arrived. We passed most of the places again in daylight this morning – Christ was still keeping an eye on the city from his perch. He has apparently now had his thumb glued back on after it fell off after being struck by lightening a few weeks ago. The shanty towns didn’t look so bad in daylight – the driver last night had said you could get a tour round there. I quite fancied that – but then I got “the look” from Paul who obviously didn’t. That is another three and a bit weeks away – might have lost him by then!! We got to the airport in half an hour – we were warned that it would take about an hour in rush hour traffic, but most of the traffic was going the other way. We hardly got held up at all. And the bill was under 60 Brazilian Reals – well under £20. The check in was really slow – perhaps it had been a good move to get here early.
The international airport is not exactly what I had envisioned. It is very basic, and we struggled to get a coffee and something to eat. Economy and no lounges all the way until our homeward flight – oh dear! We bought what we thought were latte’s and muffin’s – neither being exactly that. The coffee tasted as though it was made of condensed milk, and the muffins certainly were not muffins. No idea what they were, but won’t be buying something that looks like that again! One choice of coffee shop – take it or leave it. The international airport certainly isn’t one that will be sticking in my mind as state of the art.
Paul decided to take a picture of our plane when we went to the gate – I thought it was a bit odd, the writing on the side looked very much like Alitalia. We were flying Aerolineas Argentinas. Nobody seemed to speak any English, but this was the gate that was on the departures board. Then I noticed that the next flight down from ours was an Alitalia to
– don’t think we are
going to be on that plane, but we have a nice picture of it! The queue started moving, so like proper
English folk we joined on the end – not really knowing where we were
going. We showed our boarding cards, but
no-one really wanted to look. Oh well –
just have to see if anyone else is sitting in our seats, and then we will know
that we are on the wrong flight! No –
our seats were empty so we must be on the right one. I had booked a window and Paul an aisle – and
luckily, even though the plane seemed packed, no-one sat in between us so we
had plenty of room. It wasn’t so bad –
it could (and probably will be by the end of the trip) have been a whole lot
The three hour trip to Buenes Aires went fairly quickly – and we actually had what looked like a ham and cheese roll, and it was a ham and cheese roll. The international airport at Buenes Aires competes well with that in
Rio. We were off the plane quite quickly, and onto
a bus for a twenty yard trip. We were
through passport control – the form here was only one per family, so as the
head Paul filled it in (!) This one actually wanted the make, model and number
of your mobile phone as well as the normal information. When we got through the other side we
realised we still had the form – not quite sure when and where that should have
gone. The carousel for the luggage here
was something else. It couldn’t have
gone any slower if someone was winding it up from outside. But, our bags duly arrived, and off we went
to meet our prebooked transfer – or not.
No-one there with our name on a board.
We waited half an hour – called all the very useful local numbers and
got a recorded message in Spanish on each one.
After scouting round for one last time, Paul changed some dollars into
Argentinian Pesos and we headed out for a taxi.
Not a problem at all – apart from the driver didn’t speak much English
and the luggage was piled on the front seat as there wasn’t much room in the
boot. I had the address of the hotel
written down, and he put it into his sat nav – oh no, not another one that is
still learning! He dropped us off
somewhere close to the hotel – he wasn’t sure where it was – and it turns out
it was just across the road. Near
enough! 280 pesos later – around £30 –
we were wheeling our cases up the ramp.
The doorman came running down to help – obviously doesn’t see “walk
in’s” at the Plaza Hotel that often.
After successfully checking in, I asked the chap behind the desk to phone the transfer company to let them know we had arrived, and that they hadn’t! The woman on the end of the phone insisted there had been someone there and we missed them. She said she would get the rep to phone, which she dutifully did fifteen minutes later. She then insisted she was there – although the times she arrived and left seemed to differ whenever she repeated them. I knew she wasn’t there – and it was making me cross when she kept insisting she was. In the end, I found out that she had been at the wrong airport – which she found quite funny, then suggested that the pilot must have decided to land at the wrong airport. I know transport is renowned to be hit and miss in
including flights, but I can now put some of that down to stupidity. Don’t these people look at the flight number
and check it has landed and where?? I
soon had enough of her, and hoped we wouldn’t bump into each other during our