Nov 18:  Iguassu Falls

I was up at 8am.  Haven't hit the wall yet.

My three words to describe the falls yesterday:  ridiculous, sick and wicked.

Our driver Eduardo took us into Argentina again to see the other side of the falls.  Roberto stayed home today.

Eduardo holding a cup of mate.  This stuff tasted like beer that someone dropped a cigarette into.

Random guinea pigs on the way to the falls.  Wow.  I should have deleted this one because it adds nothing to the travelogue.

Here are some uncaptioned photos from the catwalk overlooking Devil's Throat:

If you can't read it, the sign says "catwalk destroyed by a flood in 1992".  Same year as Right Said Fred's immortal single.  Too sexy by far.

Uncaptioned photos from other points along the Argentine trail:

This photo is not uncaptioned, and yet it needs no caption.

Next we took a boat ride that went right up to the falls and drenched us.  We were given bags to hide our stuff in, and the mist made photography difficult, but I got a few:

We were about to go between the rocks and to the left right under the falls.

Approaching the falls.  The boat took us up to the base then circled around and did it again.

At the conclusion of the boat ride (near this spot) we had the option of taking another small boat over to Isla San Martin (see photos from yesterday for perspective).  We all did this, and then most of the group stayed on the beach while John, Eli and I climbed up to a lookout point.

Eli near the lookout point.

This lookout point was crazy.  Eli literally blew her mind here.

We stared at the falls in wonderment for a while.  I pulled out my watch and discovered that we would have to rush to make it make to Eduardo in time.  I think there was confusion because we were working on Brazil time but the Argentina side of the falls is an hour behind, and the guy at the end of the boat ride gave us Argentina time.  So we quickly went back down to the beach, assembled the rest of the group (swimming in the river) and took the next ferry back across to where the boat dropped us off.  Lance left his shoes on the island and did not retrieve them.  Then we started the hike back up to the park entrance.

Decent shot from the trail leading up from the boat dock.

It was a bit tricky getting back to the park entrance because all the signs said how to get down to the dock, not how to get back.  But Eli and I figured it out.  I don't know what happened to the others but they fell far behind.  We reached the train that took us to the boat earlier in the day but it was faster to walk, so we footed it all the way to the entrance.  Eduardo appeared soon afterward (we got there a few minutes after the prearranged time) and said he was going to start the AC in the van where some of the group was waiting.  (I lost track...what were they doing in the van at that point?)  Eli assured him that the rest of the group was close behind.  I'd wanted to tell him a better tale, like maybe condors took them away, and Eli and I were hesitant to fight the condors because they're endangered.  In any case, Eli and I drank some beers while waiting for our imperiled tour mates.  They showed up 10-15 minutes later and joined us for beers.  Brid encountered some friends there who happened to be visiting Iguassu the same day.  As they spoke in brogues I instinctively whistled "The Irish Washerwoman", Team Ireland's theme at the past two Wiffleball events.  I'm getting better at those Paul Shaffer-style musical reactions.

For dinner we went to the dance show/buffet.  Eli and I each consumed our first oyster.  During the show they brought a random Asian girl up on stage, made her stand with arms outstretched and called her Christ the Redeemer, then recognized her ass as Sugar Loaf.  Rio-themed ribaldry!

After dinner we went back to the hotel.  Eli and I were on the Internet till almost 1am.  I IMed Christle and Ken at work just to rub it in.  During that time Shaneela and Radha went to bed because nothing was going on.  Minutes later, Lance and John came down and hopped in a taxi for a night on the town.  Those demons. 

My favorite thing about the Hotel del Rey was the motion detectors in the hallways that turned on the lights as you walked by.  I did a full Ultimate Warrior run down the length of the second-floor hallway and my path was lit as I did so.  Awesome.