Saturday, December 25, 2004


Christmas Eve and Day were passed in San Carlos de Bariloche, a town that really takes the biscuit for Alpine-ness. Of course it has the obligatory chalet-esque architecture, but it also has fondue restaurants, chocolate shops aplenty and even saint Bernard dogs with casks of brandy round their necks. I decided to break with tradition and had a steak for my Christmas meal, seeing as I'm in Argentina, the land of the steak, and I wasn't at all disappointed; it must have been the tastiest steak I have ever eaten (and I'm looking forward to trying some more).

Christmas Day was surprisingly traditional (especially given the absence of TV) in that most of the day was spent doing very little, and what little activity there was usually centred around food. Instead of a bird though we opted for another spit-roast, and although we started at 7am (and when I say we, I mean other people from the group, as I was sound asleep until way past 10 o'clock) the meat wasn't ready until half past four in the afternoon.

After dinner we all got together to get our presents. We had organised a secret santa, whereby people pick a name out of a hat and have to buy a Christmas present for that person. I ended up being given a big bucket of random snacks from Lorna as I have acquired a reputation within the group for being a consummate glutton.

P.S. It is now a few days after Christmas (I didn't get to finish writing the post in Bariloche) and we have penetrated deep into Patagonia, but I'll recount what has happened there in my next diary post (as I've still got my rant to finish).

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