Tag Archives: sketching

Last day in BA

11th January.

Darn, it’s time to leave already! I had until 8pm though before my transfer from the hotel so could spend all day out and about again. I set out for the Museo Nacional de Belles Artes intending to spend a couple of hours there then go sketching in the Recoleta Cemetery afterwards. Well, that plan went astray, before I knew it, it was one o’clock, I was famished and had only just finished looking around the ground floor. I found a nice restaurant not far away for lunch then returned for another couple of hours. I’m blaming the heat for the awful angles on todays pics……….

By then it was too hot to sketch in the cemetery, actually too hot to be outside, so I took a quick look inside the cloisters of the church next door, browsed shops and tried Starbucks for the very first time, before settling at an outdoor bar in the shade for a last quick sketch.

Good thing I headed back to the hotel a little earlier than planned as Diego arrived not long later for my transfer to the airport. Wow, it was so crowded inside and out. The traffic wardens were blowing their whistles non-stop! The driving continued to amaze me, so many drivers don’t seem to take any notice of lane markings or use their indicators – although Diego wasn’t in this category. Yet the traffic seems to flow just fine! I can’t imagine what would happen in Australia if you drove in the middle of two lanes – there would be lots of road rage!

At the airport I ordered a glass of wine with my baguette and thought it was expensive; not sure if they didn’t sell by the glass, but I got a half bottle!! Bit more than I bargained for, but why leave any when I’d paid for it, hehehe.

So, that’s the end of another adventure, I’ve had a wonderful few weeks. Already planning my next one to Chicago for the Urban Sketchers symposium and a couple of weeks in either northern US or Canada in July/August. Hopefully that will keep the wanderlust at bay for a while.


Filed under Argentina, Mid-life travel, Solo female travel, Travel

Last day in Antactica, Half Moon Is & Robert Pt

5th January 2017

Oh no, last day in Antarctica before we head back across the Drake Passage to Ushuaia in Argentine, where did the time go?

The expedition staff were over the moon this morning to see “proper Antarctic weather’, overcast and -1 degree, and windy, for our last day. They didn’t want us to go away thinking it was always sunny, calm, and clear skies.

The fitness gurus in the group set off for a 10km run, the mountaineers started their trek and the other brave souls landed for more penguins and a walk. Me, I stayed on board and sketched, chatted and took photos from the bridge deck of snow falling! I spotted one of the zodiacs stopping and starting on the way back, eventually being towed back to Plancius by another. I took a couple of pics and decided to make a sketch. When Marijke looked through by sketchbook later she was so excited to see it there, as that was her zodiac that had been towed. The German friends were also super excited to take a pic as they were among the passengers! Again, the lost SD card has reared it’s ugliness – the pics of Marijke’s zodiac under tow were obviously on that camera, grrrrrr……….

After lunch we headed to Robert Island for our last landing but the surf was too high for a landing, the bravest endured another zodiac cruise. Again, I was happy to stay on board to start another sketch, this time one I’d taken when kayaking.

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Filed under Antarctica, Mid-life travel, Solo female travel, Travel

Ushuaia – last town in Argentina!

27th December 2016

The Hosteria Patagonia Jarke is set on the hillside with a view overlooking the town and port of Ushuaia and is a lovely place to stay with plenty of spaces to sit, relax and take in the surroundings. They have a couple of gorgeous rooms with glass roof and walls with big comfy sofas and chairs, I was wishing I had more time to enjoy them.

Hosteria Patagonia Jarke, Ushuaia, Argentina

Hosteria Patagonia Jarke, Ushuaia, Argentina

I took off down town to find the clothing hire place I had contacted about renting an outer jacket for the cruise but found a sign on the door “Out for a Ride”. Oops, that was unexpected, I didn’t realize Argentina celebrated the art of the siesta!

Not to worry, I wandered around the shops and had lunch at Tante Sara’s where I took out my sketching gear again and drew a cute little place across the road while having lunch.

First sketch for a while, pretty rusty!

First sketch for a while, pretty rusty!

Back to the hotel for a nanna nap, I’m still blaming jetlag, as I woke again 4 hours later!!! Wow, quick rush back downtown to Ushuaia Extremo who were now open, thank goodness, and a lovely girl quickly helped me with renting my jacket for the next 12 days. I thought it was pretty good value at US$65 for the entire trip and think it turned out to be the most used piece of gear I had.

Trusty jacket hired for my trip from Ushuaia Extremo

Trusty jacket hired for my trip from Ushuaia Extremo

Another walk around then back to Tante Sara for another sketch and more food before heading back up the hill where I spent a couple of hours drawing with a glass of wine beside me in the lovely glass room before heading off to bed around 11pm with the sun still shining. What a place.

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Filed under Argentina, Mid-life travel, Solo female travel, Travel

Around Baracoa

28th December 2015

First up this morning was a visit to the Baracoa Museum – so interesting and so very different to most of our museums at home. Set almost on the waterfront and surrounded by stone walls with old cannon pointing out to sea it was originally part of the town fortifications, it’s in a stunning location and full of Cuban and more specifically Baracoan history. I was chuffed to find an opportunity to take the first of many Che Guevara related pics.

We headed out of town to the Tey River for a boat ride and the highlight seemed to be the guy rowing had 6 fingers and toes on each hand and foot! He was an absolute hoot, lots of stories and oh so happy to pose for us. I felt sorry for him rowing the 5 of us along in the boiling sun but it didn’t seem to worry him, I’m guessing our tips make up for that.

Our lunch spot on the banks was just gorgeous, open sided buildings surrounded by the trees on a river bank, what more could you ask for. Oh, maybe a drink made in a coconut or grapefruit!!! I’ve not seen a bartender lop the top from a coconut with a machete before, but this one was very well practiced. He then emptied some of the coconut water, added white rum and juice and a straw made from thin bamboo and voila, I was set – could become very addictive. Buffet lunch with pork, rice and what I’m discovering is the normal salad of cucumber, tomato and cabbage along with the musicians all made for a nice although touristy outing.

Back in Baracoa most of the group went back to the hotel but I stayed down with a few others for a wander. We talked our way into a ride round to a lovely beach in one of the taxis, a wagon with plank seats on each side pulled by a donkey and then back to the malecon. We joined the locals around a beer truck and bought a bottle to taste – one of the guys lent us his bottle, a plastic soft drink bottle cut down! Wendy also joined in the dancing with much egging on by us and the locals. What an absolutely wonderful experience, everywhere you go there is music playing and people just being together talking, laughing, singing and dancing.

After lots more wandering we found a lovely place on the malecon with enough adirondack chairs out the front for all of us where we had a few drinks, chatted and watched the world go by. We met a German guy there with a beautiful big dog who splits his time between Munich and Baracoa – I don’t think you’d get 2 more different places in the world.

It was getting on by the time we made our way back up the hill where I sat in the garden and attempted a sketch before going to dinner. This was another private home with rooftop restaurant. This one was much slicker than last nights place, it was lovely, the food (lobster again) and service was great but I much preferred the more laid back quality of the first night. Tonight also reminded me of one of the joys of solo travel – not feeling stressed because of other people’s issues impacting the whole group. Things between one of the couples were tense to say the least!!!

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Filed under Cuba, Mid-life travel, Travel