We got here after a lovely 11 hour bus ride with the heater on full blast and then the plan to get a hotel room didn´t work out as all the decent ones were booked up. So, a bit fed up and very, very hot, we booked an ensuite room at a place called Hostel Lao. Our room was amazing, really large, clean and with a decent bathroom so, after a quick wander up to the local language school and a rather intimidating entrance exam, we signed up for 10 days at the hostel and booked ourselves in for a week long Spanish course (Sians idea).
The next day we went on the obligatory wine tour and saw 3 wineries; small, medium and large. After sampling a few of the local wines we got to a restaurant and had a feast laid on for us. Then it was back to the hostel, a quick sleep, and a bbq (with more wine) organised by the owners Mike and Celeste. An English and Argentinian couple who, after travelling themselves, decided to open their own hostel.
Next day was a bit wasted (damn hangovers), but the day after we went off horseriding in a valley just below the Andes. I managed to get into second gear (trot?) on the horse without falling off. The picture of us on the horses is just after we´d rounded up all the other horses into the pen. Well Sian and our guide did anyway. I was hanging on for dear life about half a mile behind.
After all this fun it was back to school for a week. I can now count higher than two (I got to eight last time I tried) but Sian got placed in a higher group and seems to be a lot more confident asking for things. A normal conversation with a Spanish person is a bit out of reach but with a bit more practice…
After a final bbq with the owners tomorrow (7th June) we´re off to Salta which is nearish to the border with Bolivia. We are going to stay there a week and hopefully watch the England v Argentina rugby match before going into Bolivia.
David (and Sian) xx