Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Fat Freddy Mercury

The Morning After
Next day after waking up horribly early in my tent because of a bird singing at full volume close by (how lovely you must be thinking), and later in the morning because of the stifling heat in my tent from the glorious sun (I can imagine those stuck in Beaufort appreciating my moaning about birds singing and sunshine!), we follow the same marvellous format of day - food, river, rodeo, beers, and concert!

First I wander out past the lake to the furthest hotel where according to my book I may be able to arrange a tour to the Cave of the Hands. Nope, failed again. Well it may be 10,000 years old, but screw it!! I noticed the rack rates for the room in this very nice hotel - Argentine $260 per night for single room! Time for me to head back to my $5 hotel. Worth the walk for the lake though:


Spot of fishing?


The boys and I head out together looking for food. We find a makeshift place in someone's drive where they are grilling chicken. We wait about 15 minutes for the whole chicken, which is good. Nice alternative to sausages too. We sit on the roadside under the shade of a tree and chomp through the meat, with only a small concern on my part that my sandled-feet are going to be squashed!

The Rodeo
My Argentine friends are off this evening, so I go to the rodeo and concert with my campsite boss and his girlfriend, who are very nice, and engage me in a gift war - he buys ice-cream, so I buy drinks, then he buys food and a drink for me, then I do the same, then he trumps me by giving me a heavy wooden armadillo! Damn him, why didn't I see the armadillo coming! Very nice thought though, and will definitely help me shed a few pounds when I have to carry it on my treks!

Made him take his sunglasses off as punishment

I told you silly hats were the norm

The build up

And she's off!

One determined horse!

But he stays on! What a guy!

Horse hasn't given up yet though

Remarkably this guy survived this too

The Concert
After the rodeo, we head back to the "hotel", and some fun is had with the family! These two girls are cousins of boss man, are very cute, and are polar opposites - one wanders about yelling and getting into trouble, enjoying climbing up on my head then strangling me, the other quiet but intelligent, works out my camera almost straight away (more than I've managed after 6 months of owning it!)

Crazy photographers at work

Camera swapped between them

Ominous clouds but no rain

The concert isn't as busy as Saturday - not surprising really as despite me being on permanent holiday, I guess most people have to work. The locals are looking forward to tomorrow when all the hippies clear off and the town returns to normal peace and quiet.

Hey hey we're the Monkeys!

During some of the acts there were dances in costume on the stage, dancing a traditional dance, which comprises couples paired up, arms in the air, and spin as they pass back and forth. Then the girl swirls more, whilst the bloke does a morris-dancing type jig on the spot. Later, when some of the bands were playing, couples from the audience would dance in front of the stage, and if they were good, would be invited up to dance. I don't think my efforts impressed - I certainly didn't get called up.

The beautiful traditional dance

Next up was my favourite act - three guys who do a musical groovy rock thing mixed up with a bit of slapstick comedy. They played yesterday too. The crowd gets grooving! They did a comedy act about a guy breaking up with his Korean girlfriend. Hmmm. I do get the impression that there's a bit of a "redneck" attitude to race here - when wandering the markets, boss man points out to me some black guys as if it's really strange and interesting! Also in Sao Paulo, anyone with the slightest bit of oriental race in them is regarded as Japanese - even when I couldn't even tell they were anything but Brazilian.

These guys were good, especially Fat Freddy Mercury

Was starting to feel a bit tired by this stage. Early start plus impossibility of afternoon snoozes because my tent is so damn hot!

Cher returns to the stage

Light fantastic

There may be no one under the hat

The beauty contest again, and seems to be the same girls as yesterday. The one I tipped wins!

Someone else had too much beer earlier too

Surely there's a place in there for me?

To be honest, I find the contest rather tedious. I'm as red-blooded as the next guy, but it just seems like a strange out-dated thing to do. Surely there should be one for the girls' benefit too, a Chippendale contest? It drags on for ages too, with some transferring of the crown ceremony, before finally we get back to music, with a band called Memphis Blue, who are quite famous I think, and good! Wakes me up!

Back to the business of serious rhythm and blues!

Memphis Blue belting out classics

Good night Los Antiguos

A perfect way to end a festival that I've been so lucky to enjoy. See you next year Los Antiguos, and Viva Patagonia!!


Anonymous said...

shave the beard

Anonymous said...

Sam loves to take it up the shiter

Anonymous said...

I saw Sam in Tesco's last week, I dont really thik hes in Patagonia, I think hes in Clapham