Behind the Lens
Argentina, Part One: Quebrada de Humahuaca
Milborne Port to Buenos Aires: home, car, traffic, airport, then 13 hours being kneed in the back by the world’s tallest man while watching vacuous films (Bridget Jones’ Baby – why did I do it? Two hours staring at the headrest in front would have been preferable), another airport, taxi, hotel… And now I’m here, sitting in a café off Plaza Mayor, reminding myself of the pathetically few morsels of Spanish I know, while people watching. Back in South America again!
I first came to Argentina on a refrigerated cargo ship in 1978, and so began my fascination with this continent. After joining the MV Port Alfred at anchor in the aptly named Shat al-Arab off Khorramshahr in Iran, we sailed for South America where we loaded frozen meat at ports all down the east coast of the continent. Two years later I returned on another reefer boat, the MV Alsatia. Of course, we crew’s priorities when let loose ashore were the same as they have been for seamen over the centuries: art galleries, cultural tours, diplomatic exchanges, church services, sight-seeing; you get the picture… South America was very welcoming to a 20 year-old navigator.
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