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Argentina Planning Update: Almost Ready to Go!

It is now just a few weeks before we leave for our two week journey to Argentina, with stops in Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay. Our passports have been making the rounds the past few weeks, getting the needed visas for the trip. First, two in-person visits had to be made to the Brazil consulate in Los Angeles; one to leave the passports and application and the other to pick them up 10 days later. My preference is to overnight the materials, but in this case, Brazil only does this in-person.

Once the passports were back, they were sent to the Paraguay consulate the next day. This took a little longer than Brazilian process, not only due to the mail back-and-forth but because I had asked for single entry visas and was contacted because only multiple ones were being issued. This necessitated sending another money order to cover the incremental amount. But those passports are now back and, after verifying the Argentina and Uruguay entry requirements once more, we are now all set on this front. Even though these visas are pricey ($130 each for Brazil and $65 each for Paraguay, plus a $131 each entry fee when we arrive in Argentina), they are all good for five to 10 years, which means we will not have to go through this again next time we visit.

So we are now getting things out and beginning to sort though items to determine if there is anything we have to buy before we leave. Just today we decided to buy some different luggage that should be easier to navigate, so it is good not to leave these things to the last moment.

I am also compiling our approximate day-to-day activities lists. In this case we try to have a guide of things to do in each destination for reference, without getting to the point where each hour is literally scheduled. Similarly we also build a list of restaurants that look interesting so I am beginning to compile that list as well. Either way, we always use these lists as guidelines and also rely on conversations with others who we meet while we travel and things we see and experience while in the moment. In the end it usually turns out that we draw from equal amounts of all these inputs while on the road.

Lastly, I am also making a list of all those important things one needs to do before leaving, like stopping mail, adjusting water and heat, as well as tasks to do when we return. It is much easier to have these lists to refer to right before and after trips so that nothing is forgotten.

The next entry should be just before we leave – so stay tuned for that update.