07.02.17 Gaiman, Argentina to Las Grutas, Argentina
The wonderful lady at the tea rooms made us a great breakfast this morning. She made us some eggs! Wow, after such an egg absence that was amazing. Although what was more amazing was that when she was asking what we would like yesterday and Paul said ‘eggs’, she said ‘oh, how do you like them?’. When we told her fried or scrambled, she didn’t know how to cook them. She runs a tea room, and has only ever made boiled eggs before! No wonder last week when Paul was trying to get fried eggs in Ushuaia they kept bringing scrambled eggs. It seems totally astounding to us, but no, really the Argentinians eat cake, bread, cheese and mystery meat for breakfast.
Boy oh boy, we have been eating mystery meat since the beginning of October. Throughout Central and South America whenever you ask for ham they will bring you what can only be described as Spam, at best.
In fact, last week, I had finally managed to get my hands on some Gluten Free Bread, and when Paul ordered a sandwich from the hotel bar, I decided to join him in asking for the ingredients and making my own up. Now, Gluten Free is something that is provided for in the supermarket, but does not seem to be understood or tolerated in restaurants or hotels. I have been consistently met with a blank face, or just told no when asking for alternatives to bread. Anyway, Paul asked for me if it was possible to have the ingredients to make a Club Sandwich, and was told no, the sandwiches were pre-made. Ok, fair enough I think, and Paul tries to ask for the ‘special ham and cheese’. This gave the impression of being a good cut of ham and some nice cheese- what came for me to fill my sandwiches was enough cheese cubes to fill two cheese and pineapple hedgehogs at a children's party, and enough Spam to feed us for a week (if we had been so inclined). A similar thing had happened to Patrick in another hotel where he wanted a plate of speciality meats, asked to check there was ham, and of course when the plate came there was not a speck of ham, or Spam to be seen!
Now anyone who knows Paul will know how difficult this ham shortage has been for him, he is now becoming desperate…………
Anyway, enough Spam chatter. We had a smooth and easy ride, apart from the last 45 minutes today where the wind made it’s very violent return, despite us having left Patagonia now. We have stopped for the night at a tiny seaside place, called Las Grutas, which appears to be full of apartment homes for the summer. It is peak season here at present and so is very full.
Along the way today we had the pleasure of meeting a Canadian guy Marc. He stopped to say hello, and it turned out we’d been chatting via Horizons Unlimited, an adventure motorcycling network. Marc had just reached Ushuaia last Saturday (one week later than us), and has already caught us up and overtaken us on the road. He is making his way swiftly up to Buenos Aires, as he has rented an apartment for a month. He invited us to join him for dinner, when we reach there, so we can swap stories of the road. That will be fun, and we’ll look forward to it.