Well, here we are in Cordoba. Nice.
Arrived last night after a 6 hour bus journey - not as comfortable as the other ones - to our hostel in a dark and dodgy part of town. To be told that, unfortunately, due to a Women´s Convention being held in the town, it being the Argentine bank holiday (Columbus Day), and Oktoberfest happening in the vicinity, not only was there no room in THIS hostel, but no room in CORDOBA!! Talk about feeling Mary and Joseph´s pain........(is that blasphemous??)
So, we felt slightly panicked at the thought of either a night on the streets (which, in this part of town, looked none too appealing), or heading back to the bus station to wait it out till morning and try change our tickets to Iguazu for Sunday rather than Monday. But, luckily, the hippie spirit lives on in Argentina more than anywhere else in the world! Viktor, our wonderful hostel owner, told us we could sleep on the roof! Yes, the roof.
So, we dragged ourselves inside with backpacks on backs, then proceeded to follow him up a very rickity step-ladder (let me remind you that my bag is very bloody heavy!!) onto the flat room four floors up. There, we discovered some French fellow travellers who had also found no room at the preverbial inn. We stood around for a while, wondering how much colder the night would get and if it would rain, when Viktor arrived back up to the roof with a tent! Albeit a small, old and fairly un-waterproof tent - but a tent nonetheless! So, we ´pitched´it - as close as you could get to ´pitching´on a flat concrete roof! It was a three man tent, but they must have been midgets who designed it....
Next thing, Viktor arrives back up with a load of sleeping bags - but we said we already had some, so it was cool. Then Viktor and the Frenchies set up a barbeque on corner of the roof - basically a pile of coals with an old bed-springs thingy over it. Some wine and beer was brought up, and for 15 pesos we were given all the cherizo we could eat, with bread and salads galore, and all the wine we could drink (which, in Bones and McMunn´s case, turned out to be a lot!). We met some great lads from France, a few Cordobians, and even some Canadians - what a party! Great fun. Then came the sleeping....myself and Alan hit the sack (roof?) at about 1, but Bones and McMunn tripped the light fandango at some Cordobian nightclubs with the Frenchies. We were comfortably enough ensconsed - apart from the cold, stoney, uneven ground beneath us - when McMunn returned, full of vino, and talking Spanish to us.....wooo. McMunn decided to sleep outside with his sleeping bag wrapped around his head. Nice. Bones arrived back a couple of hours later, and squashed himself in beside us, draping his hands ever so gently around Alan. And so we slept, cozy as......well....COZY! This morning, Viktor woke us with news of tea, coffee and bread downstairs for us!! What a gent!!
When we got down, the heaters were on, cozy little set up, and we chatted over breakfast, learning even more ´everyday´Spanish for our troubles! Then Viktor showed us a matress and bed in the utility room, where myself and Alan will spend tonight, so the two lads will be more comfortable in the tent......McMunn might even sleep INSIDE tonight!! And still he won´t take a penny from us for the sleeping arrangements......!
Nothing but respect and admiration for the people of Argentina! We´ve met with nothing but hospitality and friendship in this country.....and even had the adventure of sleeping on a roof for the night.
We´re calling it ´urban camping´. We think it´ll catch on........