We’ve just accidentally found ourselves participating in a classic car race! Our car is a VW Gol (no, not a Golf, very much cheaper and tackier than that, certainly no classic).
There’s a circular road round the beautiful peninsula where we’re staying. We drove out and on to the loop road, and a few minutes later I was surprised to notice a couple of classic cars seemed to have appeared from nowhere behind me. They backed off, but then there was a cone in the middle of the road and a car waiting, before starting off again. We wound down our window to speak to a guy who’d been talking to the other car – no idea what he said, so I just asked if we were allowed to drive on, and he said , “si, adalante!” (which kind of means off you go). So we did, but there were more cones occasionally with what I assume were timing strips on the road. After a while we stopped at a view point over the lake to watch what was happening – every minute or two a Merc or MG or old Porsche would go by (though not all that fast). A couple of cyclists also stopped at the view point and explained they don’t bother to close the roads, they just do time trials on the roads anyway, and that the cars don’t go too fast as they have such narrow wheels and it was raining. We carried on at a decent speed so as not to hold them up, but found ourselves again behind a car waiting at a checkpoint, a couple more came up behind us and signalled for us to use the other side of the road, i.e. don’t cross their timing strip, now I get it! But too late, we’ve driven through a few…
We’ve since found out that we have unintentionally taken part in the 1000 Millas race ( ref http://www.1000millas.com.ar) in which former Le Mans and Dakar winners compete. This year Sean Connery’s stepson is taking part as well as us!
We had a nice relaxed day yesterday. We took a chairlift up a small mountain, a great vista of literally dozens of snowy Andean peaks. And we had a walk to a tiny beach by the lake. There was a school party, they must have been about 7 years old; when they realised we were English, they asked us endless questions about what the English for different words were, how old we were, Val was really enjoying it! One of them brought us biscuits. The chorus of “goodbye” seemed endless when their teachers decided it was time to go.
It’s rained pretty much all da today, but to be fair, it’s the first time we’ve had such a wet day all trip (yes, cold with plenty of gales, but not rain). Fortunately, the hotel has a DVD library, we watched Argo earlier and it brightened a little for our drive too. Tomorrow is supposed to be very sunny, so we’ll just have to pack two days sightseeing into one. We fly to Buenos Aires early on Saturday.