Thursday, March 05, 2009
I woke up the next morning and decided it was time to set an end date to my travels. I crunched some important numbers and figured out where I could go, how much it would cost and if I would be able to continue to eat three meals a day. I started to get travel stress. A weird kind of stress that only exists for people traveling for months at a time. I was starting to get aggravated with my planning my trip and figuring out where I should go. Then I remembered that I am getting upset about where to vacation for the next month and that I could not lose with any of my options.
I finally got out of the hostel and headed to the airplane ticket office to buy a ticket from Ushaia, the southern most town in the world, back to Buenos Aires. I was making a commitment for once on my trip and I was nervous.
I switched out of my sweatpants, I'm not sure why but it helped me feel better about myself, and walked to the office. Then after all the build up. Cerrado. Closed. Of course, this is Argentina who would want to make travel plans on a weekend? I went with plan B: exploring the very touristy town of Bariloche and then going over to the hostel where Carlos, my friend from the mountain refuge, worked with hopes of getting high. Like I said it had been a stressful morning and I needed a way to relax. Because sitting in the park and looking at this view on a perfect day just wasn't enough for me.
After trying out a slew of chocolate samples from the tourist-catching stores I made it to the hostel where Carlos told me he worked. I had no intentions of staying there, I just wanted to kick it with Carlos. He was there and invited me in the hostel backyard to play a futbol game with his friends. We played the game for half an hour until Carlos, like I anticipated, decided we should all take a smoke break. God bless him. We talked about Argentine sports and politics for an hour and drank a lot of soda pop before the group disbanded.
I sat in the park next to the lake for a while longer just wondering if life could get any better. I then went home and checked my e-mail and learned it was about to get frighteningly better.
I received an e-mail a few days earlier from a guy named Marquitos, telling me he found my blog and that I should come to Bahía Blanca (a city in the southwest of the province of Buenos Aires) to check out some basketball. I knew nothing of Bahía Blanca other than the fact that it was the hometown of NBA star Manu Ginobili. I thanked Marquitos for reading the site, but told him Bahía Blanca was not in my travel itinerary.
Then in perhaps the most important e-mail of my life Marquitos told me one Paul McPherson was just traded to a team which plays in Bahía Blanca. Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ. I raced through a bunch of online news articles as fast as my 56.6 kilobyte-per-second connection would allow and confirmed that P-Mac himself had magically landed in the same country I had been living in for the past four months. Marquitos was my new favorite person ever.
It was all too much too handle. I ran over to my fake parents hotel to tell them the great news and celebrate over a bottle of cheap red wine. After dinner and two more bottles of wine I still had trouble sleeping. I woke up at 4 in the morning and couldn't fall back asleep. My favorite player ever was now within reach. I was finally close to finding Paul McPherson. This must be what it feels like for foster kids who are finally going to meet their biological parents. Will he like me? Will he know about my blog? What kind of guy will he be? I hope he's cool.
I couldn't fall asleep. I was way too excited. Plus I was pretty sure the guy who drunkenly returned to the room at 4:30 in the morning was masturbating.