Bob the blog made it .....
Buenos Aires 13102011
Having spent the night in a nearby hotel I arrived bright-ish and bushy tailed, to present myself and my ticket to Madrid and then Buenos Aires to the booking clerk at Gatwick Airport.
I knew the day was not going well when he enquired about a return ticket. “Don’t have one” says I “as I’m leaving the country by boat”. “Can you prove that”..er um. And things when a bit downhill from there.
Being a nice sort of bloke, “Don’t worry” said he “I know a man who can” and I was dispatched off to another desk to get an outward ticket to of any description to any destination to show the good Argentinian people I would not be a burden on their State and they could bundle me off should I become burdensome.
This did not quite go to plan and £1,250 later I had a return ticket to UK from BA plus a one way ticket to Montevideo .. Don’t ask, but the Clerk was happy which is more than can be said for my credit card account or Lars whom I rang to explain my predicament with little care for international time differences. I can confirm he’s not at his best at 4 in the morning.
Off to Madrid and 10 hour wait for my connection. It was beautiful weather 28C so I sunned myself and read the last bits of the Telegraph which I now new by heart, drank a few beers and stretched out a Croc Messeuer until it was time to go.
On arrival at Buenos Aires at 0530 the nice lady at immigration smiled nicely and stamped my passport caring not to enquire about my exit tickets or how long I stayed !!
Having been assured by the Taxi driver he could get me to the Yacht Club de Argentina we ended up visiting all the ports in BA from Ferry to Container. Eventually with a few calls to Lars (Who sounded a bit better at 0730) and my best Spanish we were met at the entrance by Lars and I’d arrived.
I met our new crew member Peter, a Canadian and far to young and fit to be travelling with this lot of seasoned geriatrics. Eventually Thomas appeared (having got in at 4am and looked it) and the first beer of the day did wonders for him.
A trip into town to get phone cards and sort out problems with Thomas’s phone and lunch took all day, with Thomas deciding that as they seemed incapable of fixing his problem he would have a refund, oh dear another can of worms.
That evening we decamped to the Yacht Club, with its wonderful old Colonial air of panelled libraries, bars and dining rooms as well as excellent services and Wi-Fi facilities. Having sorted out our E-mails etc we ordered dinner and retired back to the yacht for night caps.