Sunday, June 24, 2018

February 19, 2018 – Buenos Aires, Argentina – Rain – 80sF

The room was quiet again and I got up at the same time – around 7 AM. The room seemed dark and that was due to the torrential rain coming down. We are hoping that this will stop.

Another tasty breakfast – I like the simplicity of the buffet – I also really like the preserves.

Our flight is not until 8:55 PM and our pre-arranged ride is not coming until 6 PM so we had the whole day. The rain did stop so our goal today is to locate an Argentine Spa and get some massages. Using Google Maps, we went right to where the spa was supposed to be in Recoleta. Alas, it was not there – another wild Google Chase.

We went back to the hotel and then to Patio Bullrich for lunch. This time, I ordered some spinach quiche with coleslaw and potato salad – we shared the lunch. We bought some Coke Zeros at the deli – my meal came with a Coke but I also drank some of the store bought stuff. A very interesting meal but not nearly as good as those from the gourmand café.

We took a little walk around the neighbor hood – around the corner from our place is the Hyatt Hotel – there were some interesting equine sculptures on the hotel lawn.

IMG_20180219_horses Hyatt Hotel

Horses at the Hyatt

hung around the lobby and other public areas of the hotel until our ride showed up right on time.

On our way out of the city – along the Avenida 9 Julio, we noted a skyscraper with a neon “installation” of Evita Peron.  She is still a legend in Argentina.

IMG_20180219_Evita Avenida 9 Julio

Evita, Evita…

I had no idea how far the airport was from our hotel (even though we have flown out of here before) but the ride was in traffic and slow.  Our driver was very good at negotiating the traffic but it was still a good hour or so to EZE.  Even though the hotel told us that charge cards were OK, the driver did not accept them.  We scrapped together dollars and ARS to make the fare. 

EZE was a zoo.  We found out check in area and joined a huge line that seemed to inch along.  Some people were complaining that they were likely to miss their flights.  We did have plenty of time but the line was really slow.  Even though we technically had no status on United (we had cancelled our credit card before the trip), my ticket still had Premier on it.  I jumped into the Premier Line, which cut off a significant chunk of waiting time. 

We checked in and checked our bags to Chicago even though we were connecting in Newark.  Our flights were UA978 – EZE to EWR – 9:00 PM – 6:10 AM connecting with UA977 – EWR to ORD – 7:45 AM to 9:21 AM.  There were be no rechecking of luggage between these two tight flights.  A positive thing.

We tried to get into the Star Alliance Club at EZE with out United Passes but they would buy it.  A lot of passengers were trying to do the same thing.  You would think that this would be a nice perk since United might be the biggest Star Alliance member.

We still had plenty of time before boarding so we decided to have dinner in one of the restaurants in the food area.  We ordered a pizza and salad plus a beer and a diet coke.  The price was very reasonable for an airport venue and the pizza and salad were both good. 

UA978 is on a 767-400 (ER) – it’s a long flight from Buenos Aires to Newark.  Our plan was at the gate when we got there.

IMG_20180219_UA978 B767-400ER


The flight took off on time – our Kosher meals were pretty much what they always are (we were hoping that leaving from BA would mean a different vendor for the meals).  They were OK (except for the predictably inedible cole slaw).

The flight was long but relatively smooth and I watched a lot of movies (e.g. Wonder Woman again).  As usual, I didn’t sleep on the way home (maybe a momentary doze off). 

We made our connection in Newark OK and the flight to ORD was a snap compared to the long haul we were just on. Our bags arrived with us and soon a taxi took us home.

In spite of the fact that there was so much up front work (e.g. visas, shots, and other requirements), the trip itself was very enjoyable.  We probably wouldn’t do Rio again during Carnival but our stay in Buenos Aires was very nice (in spite of the problem with getting cash).

A long trip and were glad to be home.

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