Argentina - May 8

Going our way?

May 8 by Ashton Hansen

So the bad news is... we didn't walk away with a victory tonight. The good news is... it had nothing to do with us not playing well. In fact, we didn't play at all. That's actually the really bad news. One of the teams just didn't show up for our match. Oh yeah, that would be us! You know, I've been to a place one might call "The Middle of Nowhere" a few times in my life, and I'd say that the cozy little spot on the side of the road that we got to share with a large herd of bovines for about six hours today strangely resembled it.

Today was intended to be a travel day from Iguazu to the destination of our next match seven hours away. We made a little pit stop when we were about halfway there where we enjoyed the luxury of indoor plumbing (soap and toilet paper included!) and a fruit stand nearby. Shortly after we were on our way again, we were stopped at a government check-point (you know, at that cozy little spot I told you about earlier) where we sat for about an hour and a half before anyone really knew anything that was going on. Let's be honest though, most of us still don't really know what went on, but I think it had something to do with the improper registration of our bus or something like that which caused the "policia" to not let us pass. All we could really see was Pichu (a way awesome guy who works with Tim and has traveled with us all along) going back and forth from the top of a nearby mound of dirt and the road trying to get reception on his cell phone. We all love Pichu. He is seriously the man!

So, we turned on the movie "The Illusionist" and found other ways of entertainment to pass the time. One of my favorite team bonding activities that we experienced would have to be the "iPod Idol" that was enjoyed by all participants and listeners alike. Goody (Chelsea Goodman) and Jonny (Janvier Beaumont) mostly headed it up with Bryn (Porter) as our opening act. This game was where a song would be chosen for someone to sing, and the volume was so loud that the person singing could not hear anything but the music playing. Honestly, you could not hear yourself singing (or the others laughing) at all. It was quite entertaining I must admit. Even Gaye (Merrill) joined in with a superb performance to top it all off. I thought that Rachel (Dyer) was stellar with her sunglasses and actions, (Melissa) Lake did a great job being "initiated" by belting out a little "Spice Girls", Marisa (Vandersteen) did fabulous singing one of her wedding music songs (the countdown is officially NINE DAYS until she gets married!!!), Kiana's (Rogers) song and Goody and Jonny's duet were also most enjoyable. I got to sing a little Shania Twain. Fun fun!

A new and apparently properly registered bus came to pick us up where we were eventually able to resume our journey. We stopped and had dinner at a place where you dish up whatever you want and they charge you by the weight of your food. It was good. It's always nice when there is a selection other than the usual steak and bread. Dinner is always really late here. It's almost midnight!

Well we are back on the road and we are grateful so we can get off of it sooner. So yeah, I think we'll have a grand total of like 15 hours on or very near to a bus today. But hey, at least it was a way cool bus. The individual chairs recline almost to the full out laying down position with foot rests, and pillows and blankets were provided like we're on an airplane or something. We sure do travel in style! Or I guess sit by the road at times in style. I am grateful for the day of rest that we were able to enjoy together. It sure made my assignment to write the blog for today more simple! I am however excited to get into the gym again and play tomorrow! We are happy and well, and grateful to be here despite our little pit stops. Chua for now!!!

Editor's Note

The team left Iguazu at 8:30 a.m. and finally reached our destination at 2:30 a.m., a total of 18 hours on the road!

Loaded up and ready to go ... when we were still happy to be on the road!

The government checkpoint where we got stopped.

Making friends by the side of the road.

Tim and Pichu, our tour guides, try to get cell phone reception on a nearby hill and get us on our way.

Going our way?

Stephanie Lau is determined to rescue us ... Hello, Mr. President?

A beautiful Argentinian sunset.