Dear Family & Friends,

Another two days of our South American adventure…
Yesterday we spent the day exploring Montevideo, the Capital of Uruguay. I never realized what a small and peaceful country Uruguay is.. The population is only about 3 million and there is no national or widespread religion here. Even Easter and Christmas go by different non-religious names down here and are celebrated with no religious connotation. Definitely the biggest celebration of the year is Carnival. A 30 day celebration of dance, colorful dress, drums , and heavy duty partying! 

First we toured Montevideo, the capital of Uruguay. It is an amazingly big city for a country of only 3 million. 90% of the countries population must live in the city. The country must also be very prosperous to have such an elaborate capital. The city was beautiful with the the customary churches, government buildings, and various statues.. We walked around a bit and as I watched my brother in law Steve get so excited about seeing the local Opera Theater it reminded me of my Odd Couple theory.. Steve is a cultured Opera fan…. I am more an Elvis fan… Go figure???
After the city tour we ended up at the national Carnival Museum.. A giant display featuring displays of various masks, costumes, and drums featured during Carnival.. After touring the museum we had a one hour lesson in Carnival drumming and dancing.. My brother in law Steve and I were called up for lessons in front the entire group. How humiliating!! Steve definitely has musical talent and rhythm and I have nothing….. I lost all my rhythm as a child when my mother dropped me on my head. 🙁
First they tried to teach me to play the Carnival drums. The instructor was enthusiastic and charming but no amount of effort on her part imparted the slightest bit of rhythm in me.. I could have trip and fallen on the drums and made about the same amount of rhythmic sound… After failing at that she decided to add to my humiliation by assigning to me the part of playing the Medicine Doctor in a mock Carnival dance… I did my best but it was to no avail… when it comes to musical talent I missed that cue.
After the Carnival Museum we went to a huge old building by the docks.. It was full of bars and Uruguay BBQ stands.. pure heaven. I could have spent the rest of the trip in there sampling booze and bbq all day long.. The sample beef and sausage I had were some of the best I have ever tasted and believe me that is my area of expertise!
After that I waddled back to the ship.  As the ship left the labor that evening we passed numerous sunken ships in the harbor. The guide explained to us that if you dock in the harbor here and don’t pay the proper fees they just sink your ship as you attempt to leave.. Swift and affective justice….
That evening we gathered in the forward observation deck and enjoyed the drinks of the day… some potent rum concoctions and we all had a very relaxing evening..
Now we have two days of ocean sailing. Our next stop are the Falkland Islands. I always wanted to see what all the fuss was about between Argentina and England back in the early 1980s so by Friday I should be able to send you a detailed report.

Jason

Notice the second story supports? They are nothing but small tree trunks.. See they don’t need no stinking’ building regulations!! 

Whats left of the original entrance to the city Citadel ..

The aprons and bow ties are the official school uniforms.. I love the expression on the young man looking at me.. it is like he is say ” Ya’ I know I look ridiculous but I have to wear this… “

Cute.. 🙂

My brother in law, Steve getting excited to see the local Opera House… I’m asking “Wheres Elvis??”
The Odd Couple… 🙂

This is the national horses ass

Some local “Culture”…

The “Shoot Out” in downtown Montevideo.

I love this photo… the pattern of AC units everywhere….

Parliament.

My Queen of Uruguay …. 🙂

The Royal Wave….

A large indoor shopping center.

Another local BBQ restaurant..

I like this BBQ!!

Did I mention they like beef here??

This is quite legal here, if you are citizen.. Tourist are not allowed to buy it..

Had to telephoto this picture.. Notice someone’s wallet is stollen and then the thief threw it up on this ledge!

A monument to the original settlers.. Uruguay is 99% European decent.. Virtually no idigineous people still here.

There is no on line bill paying here yet so all utilities have to be paid for in person at these facilities so as you can see security is extensive… The local machine gun welcoming committee.

My new outfit.. I hope the guys at the Blackhorse will let me back into the group with this one..

I bought this little out fit for Bonnie. I can hardly wait for her to wear it next time we go out in SLO.

Lunch being prepared for us at the Carnival Museum..

Our drum and dance instructor..

Steve showing me hows its done..

BBQ Paradise!! 🙂

BOOZE AND BBQ EVERYWHERE!!

Now here is a motorcycle name every young man dreams of.. The YUMBO DREAM!

It is legal here, but only for citizens.

“You don’t pay your docking fees??? No problem, we sink you.”

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