May 222012

Montevideo, Uruguay.

Uruguay. The last stamp in my passport (well, if I’m lucky I’ll get another one when going back to Argentina). The last country to visit on this trip.

Mom and dad left today. Or better, they went to Buenos Aires to get their flight tomorrow, while Vivi and me went to Montevideo. It was really cool to travel with them, show them how to backpack and to share the beauty of South America. Looking forward to your their visit!
It feels like I’m already almost home. The countryside looks almost Dutch (slightly more rolling, so perhaps German (but since we’re all in the same European Union (and coin, whether we want to or not) and the Germans haven’t invaded us for quite some time and we haven’t played any really important football matches against them (and lost) for quite some time, it’s almost the same)). Green pastures with lots of cows. Grey skies from which a drizzle is falling (it’s autumn here. Beautifully colored trees!)

Buildings don’t look very different from Europe either. The only thing to notice is that all the streets are straight and in a grid pattern (in the cities, that is). Very handy for finding your way actually. I prefer the more natural feel of our Dutch cities I think.

The people are slightly darker than in the Netherlands, but they could be from Spain, Italy or even France.

One thing that is very different though: Mate. It seems you cannot be Uruguayan without sipping from the bitter tasting tea-like-substance. Continuously.

It’s a charming ritual. Everybody (and I do mean EVERYBODY!) is walking around with a bulb in their hand, filled to the brim with the yellowish yerba mate (a locally grown herb), from which a metal straw is sticking. Underneath their arm they clench a thermos of hot water, which they use to constantly fill up the bulb. And then suck it dry again. All day long. On a bus. When going to the toilet. When shopping. When driving a car…

So I guess this is a good in-between place. From exotic Peru and Bolivia to Europe in one go might be a bit too much of a (reverse) culture shock. Nice to get a bit of feeling for the old continent again.

3 more weeks… And then I’ll be home. Don’t really know how I feel about that. Looking forward to seeing everybody? A bit lost as I won’t be traveling anymore (though I’ll be visiting a lot of places in Holanda)? Looking forward as it’s the next step to the next big adventure?

I’ll take it the same as I’ve been doing here. One day at a time…

  2 Responses to “The last leg”

  1. Bastiaan what happened?! You are voluntarily talking about football!

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