Since we’ve become a group of six instead of a team of two it’s given us the opportunity to rent cabanas rather than to book hostels. Apart from working out cheaper, it’s a really nice way to live. At our first lakeside cabin in Trufal (near Bariloche), we cooked parilla outside using local wood and kept warm in the evening with the log burner. Its remote location and green forestry was reminiscent of the farm and made me feel as though I could live in a similar surroundings again one day.
After scaring the girls at the window whilst getting firewood in the dark, the boys found themselves locked out long enough to smoke a cigar and drunkenly cover topics including the Ottoman empire and possible ways of breaking back into the cabana.
The place we have here in San Martin, although still lakeside, is in a much bigger place. Even so, San Martin is a perfectly kept town which like Barilohe seems to have a very Swiss influence. The cabin itself is the size of a toy house and the entire thing squeaks when we walk upstairs, but it’s fun and is still less expensive than the cheapest hostel we’ve found. Last night we had a homemade empanada bake-off which made for an unforgettable evening as well as some recipes we’ll definitely bring back home with us.
Argentinians will happily ask where we’re from and strike up a conversation in shops, cafes or on the street. Here in San Martin if they tell us they are from this part of the world then they’re happy to admit that they’re very lucky. As I’m writing this I’m lying next to Tul on the beach of the lake, watching random dogs play with random beach-goers, listening to a group of locals playing the guitar and singing Spanish songs who are responding well to our claps and cheers. The sun is beating down and it has to be said that today feels as though a standard of living doesn’t get much better than this.
Parillas (Argentina’s equivalent to barbecues) are everywhere here, so tonight the boys will cook while the girls take care of sides and drinks :)