Saturday, January 19, 2008

Day 16 part 2

     The day began bright and warm with sunny skies and we took a long walk past dozens of small shop keepers, sweeping their portion of sidewalks and getting ready for a busy Saturday. San Rafael  was fresh and beautiful, the thunderstorm and heavy rain last night washed the strees and the air smelled beautiful. At 1pm we left for the airport and what a surprise.
     First when we arrived it was a small but brand new airport building.  We walked into the ticket area and the young woman ticket agent asked my name.  As soon as I said "Foreman" she smiled and said, in perfect English, "Yes, we have your reservation.  I only need your payment."  I asked how much it was and she said:  "The Groupo Alvarez office called and booked you in Business Class.  Are you paying with credit card or cash?"  I asked again, how much were the tickets.  She hesitated and said, well if you pay by credit card I have to call and get clearance.  It would be simpler if you just paid cash.  Well, I may not have enough pesos, (so for the third time I asked) How much is it? 
     She said, well it will be $280 if you pay cash.  The Business Class tickets are much more than that for foreigners, but because Groupo Alvarez booked the ticket I am charging you as a local person.  If you use your credit card, I will have to charge the regular fare. 
     I handed her $300 in American cash.  She gave me back the change in pesos and printed out the tickets.  Then we saw Gail's name was wrong, it said "Kate Foreman."  I pointed that out to the agent and asked if they would let her on the plane with the wrong name.  "Oh, no problem. The people from Groupo Alvarez forgot her name, but we all know she is Senora Foreman, so there will be no problem."  It just proves, its not what you know, but who you know.
     We were treated like royalty, whisked through a minimal security and onto the plane.  A delightful 90 minute flight over the vast Pampas and we were in Buenos Aires.  We took a cab into the center of town and checked into the Marriott Plaza on the main square San Martin Plaza. 
     This is a magnificent hotel in a great location.  We walked again, for an hour, all around the pedestrian only Calle Florida.  We tried to photograph the Tango dancing demonstration but the dancer was spinning so fast she blurred my photo. It was a great day, and from now on I will be refering to my wife as:  Kate, or Gail, or whatever her name is.

No comments: