Disclaimer: The photos in this post have nothing to do with the post itself. I just thought you might want to see more pretty pictures of Mendoza.
Can I tell you a secret? I got to really speak English last night for the first time since I arrived in South America (aside from daily phone calls to Marc) and it felt so good! No, I wasn't cheating on my Spanish tutor. I just met some American friends for dinner. I had been waiting to hear if Los Chocos were able to get enough reservations for a dinner that night, but unfortunately they didn't. It wasn't entirely a misfortune as it turned out. Yes, I am dying to dine with Martin and Martin and I'm sad I won't have the chance on this trip, but I received an email from Taushiana, my row-mate. Tash and I were both on the flight that was cancelled and we both had the fortune to make it onto the next flight. She was only coming down for a week to meet friends and they planned to be in Mendoza while I was there. I haven't met any other travelers, or people for that matter, outside of my tutor and her boyfriend, so when Tash emailed me with an invite to dinner I jumped at the chance.
I met Tash and her friends, Alex and Sam back at Anna Bistro. It was one of the only restaurants serving early enough, as they all had to catch a bus that evening for Santiago. I had about ten years on these ladies, but that didn't matter. They seemed genuinely happy to have me join them and even invited me to meet up with them in Chile. It was so nice to have a meal, not only where I was able to speak my native tongue with other people, but finally the waiters weren't questioning why I was dining alone. And these women were intelligent, wonderful, entertaining people. It made me realize how nice it can be to have company sometimes. I have been so solitary on this trip, and that's okay. I've never had a problem being alone. Sometimes I need a little solitude. Solitude allows me to observe and soak in the world around me in a way I can't when I am surrounded by friends.
That said, I do find myself constantly wishing Marc was here with me. I constantly see things that remind me of him or I know would make him laugh. He's my lifeline to the outside world and even though our calls are infrequent, he's the one I'm constantly sharing my experience with, if only in my own head sometimes.