My posts of Argentina have been pretty bad, I know. I have written just to put something every day and I have not enjoyed the process of it, I copied from my travel notebook and not from my head and the result is like I was writing a stupid diary of what I did step by step in Argentina, without feeling or emotion. Well, I still have two posts of Argentina and this time I will write with the memories that are in my head and not with what is written in a notebook. Yes or yes.
I heard that expression a lot during the time I was in Argentina. Yes or yes, a very popular expression. I like the intonation that they put and how serious they are when they say it. Yes or yes. I like it. And more with the Argentine accent, that makes everything sound more interesting and sophisticated.
When I was in Korea I shared a room with Ju, an Uruguayan girl, who told me that the Mexican Spanish was very bad and we had broken the Spanish language (the Uruguayan Spanish and Argentine Spanish are very similar). I didn’t had to go to Argentina to realize that she was right. Not to criticize the Spanish I speak, but I must say that there is a big difference, I mean really, it is not the same “No Mames ” to ” Dejate de Joder” or ” Wey ” to ” Che ” What sounds best? (Sorry, I cannot translate that).
Ok… I think I’ve strayed from the topic… and Bariloche. I’ll return.
It was my sister’s birthday and she wanted to do paraglide. I, of course, signed up and with 900 Argentine pesos we could do it from El Bolsón, another attraction in the area. The road to get there is beautiful, is small (only two lanes) but there are not many cars driving it and you are surrounded by water and hills. We went on a 4×4 to Piltriquitrón hill and got to have a view of the village. We were very high up and we could see everything but we were about to see a lot more.
It was time, my sister was the first one, and she did it pretty well. She flew very high, so high that for a moment we lost sight of her. While she was flying I went to pee in the woods and I had to implement again the technique of “Squat pee” I perfected in Africa. Minutes passed and then she landed. Now it was my turn.
I was excited, I wanted to do it, to feel nothing below my feet, to not have any ground support and head towards the clouds. I wore the suit that made me look like a girl with a level three of obesity, I adjusted the harnesses and the instructor, Ernesto, explained me how I had to do it. I was ready. He indicated me when I had to pull forward hard so the wind would not win us and then he told me to run, of course I couldn’t ran, I half stumbled over a stone and then boom! I was in the air. And every second that passed I walked away more from the land and I approached the sky. And it was magnificent.
I wanted to see everything, I looked down, to the right, to the left, and Ernesto, the instructor, told me not to do it, it would make me dizzy. And, of course, after hearing that the nauseous started. He asked me “Is everything okay?” And I said “yes”. I had not been even ten minutes on the air so either I vomited there or I vomited there. Yes or yes, because I was not going to go down. Not yet. I relaxed a bit, I stopped thinking about dizziness and stuff… At the end it was all in my mind (Every time someone says something about a pain or stuff like that and I immediately feel it).
My hands were cold, very cold. I tried to rubber them together to get some heat but I couldn’t. The air whipped straight to my face, but that did not bother me, on the contrary. I only felt the cold hands and that was in my head for a while. Relax, I thought. Then Ernesto took the camera and started taking pictures. I posed for them with a smile. One, two, three photos and he was taking more photos to the point where I no longer knew what to do. I felt like when it’s your birthday and you are in front of the cake and you just want to grab that chocolate cake and eat it but you must wait for everyone to finish singing Happy birthday and you do not know whether to sing with them, laugh or mourn for how uncomfortable the situation is. I felt like that for a moment, until he said he was going to take a video and I felt even more uncomfortable… Should I look at the camera or look to the horizon? Like those poses where you’re seeing the landscape but it is so obvious that it is a super actuated photo (I hate them!) I’d rather look to the camera and smile or raise my fist up Freddie Mercury’s style (well, an intent of the style). But no, I don’t like to be staring at nothing and try to look interesting while thinking something like “This picture will be so cool.” No, that’s not my thing. But at the same time I could not stay looking at the camera and smiling like an idiot for three minutes while all of that beauty was in front and below me. Anyway, while he took the video he gave me the helm… or those strings that control the glider (don’t really know the actual name), and he was explaining me how to turn, to go faster or slower and that kind of stuff. That was really cool, but in the video I look very uncomfortable. But, I mean, whatever! No one will actually watch it (Here’s the link). He finished to record the video, I return the strings of the glider to him, and we now try to land. Ok, perfect, I said, but even if you have the best team or if you are the best instructor it all depends on the wind. It’s like surfing, you have to find a good wave, well here, you have to find the right breeze. We tried to land and we couldn’t, then we had to try again, for this we needed to pick up the hight we had lost, so he began to spin to the left (He said that the technique of spinning like that was called thermal bubble “Burbuja térmica”), and that’s when the real dizziness came. We recovered the height and tried again. Second attempt that failed. It seemed that the wind wanted us to continue flying. We again had to make the thermal bubble and I had and expression that was saying “Hell, I want to land NOW! ” I was really dizzy, and I felt I was already green, I could not wait to be on the floor. Third attempt, here we go, I could see the landing point but suddenly we change direction, we lost height and boom! We didn’t fall on the right track instead of it, we land in the thickets of the hill. I stamped my face on a dry plant but nothing happened, I didn’t hurt myself, I was happy to have arrived. I wish I hadn’t felt dizzy at the end so I could enjoy it completely from start to finish, but still with the dizziness, Paragliding was a great experience for me, my sister and my dad who went after me.
Unfortunately, I didn’t film the moment when my dad ran to start flying as it was very funny to see him fighting with the wind; he looked like a fat kid trying to run and then he was quickly raised and he continued with the kicking (“running”) in the air. Damn! I didn’t recorded it!
But overall, it was a great experience and for me paragliding in Bariloche is a yes or yes.