This is the tractor that is coming to pull the car I am riding in, through six kilometers of deep mud and water, to get to my last destination, and most memorable stay of the trip, La Bamba de Areco Estancia.
About two hours outside of Buenos Aires, I was dropped off at the end of a previously dirt, currently mud, road that led to the estancia where I would be spending the night.
This would be my fourth, and final, hotel of the eight day trip.
It had been raining for several days, so the road had become almost impassable, as it had turned into foot deep thick sludge.
Eduardo, my driver, was calm, cool, and collected, and I had nowhere else to be, so I sat back and enjoyed the ride . . . and what a ride it was. (I just hoped I wouldn’t have to get out in my suede boots.)
It turns out that driving through a foot of mud is a lot like driving through a foot of snow . . . sliding back and forth, and up and down, fishtailing precariously towards the edge of the road and then regaining control until a few seconds later when it happens all over again.
Normally this distance would take about ten minutes . . . today, it took almost an hour.
Just as I was getting used to the pace of the roller coaster ride through the mud, I saw this up ahead.
The road had become a river.
Time to call in the calvary, aka, the tractor.
We pulled over to the side of the road until the tractor could reach us.
We weren’t the only car on the side of the road waiting to be rescued.
There was a dog frolicking around in and out of the murky water as if it were a day at the beach.
The tractor driver barreled through confidently, looking like this was something he did every day (was it?)
I watched from inside the car (suede boots . . . not getting out) as they hooked it up to the tractor.
When Eduardo hopped back into the car, I looked out his door and saw how deep the water was.
Was this little tractor really going to be able to pull our SUV through this?
I couldn’t wait to find out.
S-L-O-W-L-Y, we started moving.
This is the view out my window. The car was actually creating a wake in the water, as a boat would.
This horse was ankle deep but was, curiously, eating? drinking? out of the puddle.
When the road got better (and by that I mean as good as it was going to get under the circumstances), the tractor unhooked us and we started driving again.
It seemed like we were never going to get there, and then I spotted a gate.
Not, however, the gate to La Bamba.
THIS is the gate to La Bamba.
I have arrived.
(You’ll have to wait until the next post to see what it was like . . . but I’ll give you a hint: it’s glorious.)