Sunday, January 29, 2006

Scaling Aconcagua….OK, Maybe not Scaling, but Viewing

These past two weeks have been a whirlwind of activity. We’ve found a house, moved in and begun setting up (thus far, Vince hasn’t purchase a single poof—so much for his “I’m running the house now” bravado), made a lot of new friends—including Guillermo at the little deli down the street, who, when he learned we would be here for a year, gave us his number and told us to call him if we needed ANYTHING—and begun working and touring the city.

Our arrival in Mendoza was timed perfectly. A number of new Vines of Mendoza (Vinotourism’s new name) interns arrived just before us, and Michael’s parents Polly and Jo arrived just a few days after we did. In order to acquaint everyone with just a taste of what Mendoza has to offer, Michael and his business partner, Dave, charted a van and took us all to the base of Aconcagua.

What an amazing experience – Aconcagua is breathtaking – literally, at over 20,000 feet, it’s the highest mountain in the Americas. Vince and I grew up in the North American West, but neither of us had ever seen anything quite like Aconcagua up close and personal. When we arrived, the clouds were just beginning to move in. We were able to see the entire mountain for about 10 minutes before it was obscured by cloud cover. After a brief hike, we returned to a hostel just a little further down the mountain where Dave and his girlfriend Gabi had prepared an asado for us, a perfect end to a perfect day.

This is high season for climbing, so there are hikers in town from all over the world. One night we went to dinner and met a hiker leaving for base camp the next day; then later during dinner, we met a group of hikers (including a woman from Colorado) who had just finished their climb. Who knows, maybe next year at this time we’ll attempt it!



At 9:07 PM , Anonymous The Laras said...

That sounds wonderful. Looks like you are having a great time there. We are looking forward to seeing you here soon. Regards from Jose, Rosa and Nataly


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