My Brazilean visa will possibly be available Tuesday at the earliest so I am making good use of the time by exploring Buenos Aires. I have met a German motorcycle rider, staying at the same hotel as me. Arno Baumer flew into Boston, MA, USA in August and since that time made the adventure ride to Ushuaia and then here to Buenos Aires. He is shipping his Honda Transalp and himself back to Europe later this week. Since Arno has been here for two weeks, awaiting a ship departure, he has learned the city and has acted as my guide.
Saturday and today, we walked literally miles seeing the sights. Plaza after Plaza, beautiful architecural structure after structure and of course the local artisans booths. Among the beautiful buildings that we have visited is the famous Casa Rosada, from the balcony of which Juan and Eva Peron made numerous speeches to their adoring masses. And of course from which Madonna crooned in the famous movie, Evita.
The Casa Rosada, a beautiful dark red actually seems to glow. Rumor has it that it was originally painted with bovine blood. This very European looking city has amazing structures. It is a great strolling city.
Monday will find me at the Venezuelan Embassy making certain that I will be able to obtain a visa is I show up unexpectedly on the border between Venezuela and Brazil. I am getting mixed reports on the answer to that.
Actually, I am a bit unsure of my route from here back to Panama and Central America. If one studies the roads of northern Brazil, you will see that it is difficult if not impossible to get from Buenos Aires to Venezuela by road. Perhaps a boat down the Amazon from Belem to Manaus is the answer. But I have some concerns about the road and ride from Manaus to Venezuela and then ultimately to Columbia. Remember, I still have to contend with the Darien Gap before I get to Panama.
My two unwitting mentors for this trip, Bo Griffin and Greg Frazier, both flew their bikes back to the U.S. from Buenos Aires. That is something I do not want to do. While my primary goal was to ride from Texas to Ushuaia, I had always meant to ride back to Texas through Central America and Mexico., After all, I have great friends in both Costa Rica and Mexico who are expecting to see me in March.
Thinking of Costa Rica. As you may know there was a major earthquake near San Jose a couple of days ago with a significant number of people injured or killed. I was concerned about Art and Gary and their families and my other friends in Costa Rica. Today I received an e-mail from Art letting me know that as far as he knew everyone was O.K. As you might expect, Art and Gary were not even in Costa Rica. They had taken a ride to Panama but had been in contact with their families so all is well.
Back to my concern about how to return to Panama from Buenos Aires, if any reader has a thought, I would love to have you suggestions.