Suitcase on wheels     stuck in the snow   sniffer dog

Monday, November 27, 2006

81. A bit of work (Bariloche, Argentina)

Things were going great last week. I worked 5 days in a row, mostly airport transfers in my van but a couple of half day trips (Circuito Chico) and a full day trip to Villa La Angostura, just across the lake from Bariloche. The weather was great, sunny and clear, and I really enjoyed it. Listening to the guide I worked with I learnt a lot about the area (and helped him with his English). It felt good to finally be doing what I'd been trying to do for so long. The customers, a nice American family, had me and the guide to themselves for their three day stay, and tipped handsomely when we dropped them off at the airport.

I found a new apartment too, well, a small one room monoambiene (studio), which is out of the centro but cheap, only $500 pesos a month with everything included.

It's taken a while to get going as I'm still the new guy in town, and only one tourism agency is actually calling me at the moment. But most of my work hasn't come from them but from another transport guy who's giving me his leftover jobs. So in the case of the American family above, they booked their trip with a travel agency in the States, who contracted an agency in Buenos Aires, who contracted an agency in Bariloche, who contracted the other transport guy, who contracted me and the guide. You can imagine everyone's taking a cut, and I don't want to know how many US dollars the Americans paid their agency compared with what the guys who did the actual work, (me and the guide) receive. But such is the travel industry.

So things were going nicely until my van broke down in the middle of an airport transfer. Another guy was driving it and apparently it just died on him. It was then out of action for 3 days while a mechanic diagnosed the problem (a loose cable on the engine shutoff valve), and convinced me to get a couple of other overdue jobs done on it - new front suspension and a CV joint, both of which I'd known about for months. That was expensive - $1300 pesos, and being out of action for 3 days has hurt, as the work has dried up since. But I can say I've made a start now, and the days I worked I really enjoyed. And, my girlfriend's coming back to Bariloche in a week!

2 Comments:

  • Sweet as .. good to hear. Sounds like there'll be shitloads o work before too long.

    By Anonymous Reginaldo, at 10:43 AM  

  • To live or to visit?
    I know it's none of my business but I can't help it. I am so interested!!

    By Blogger Erin, at 11:37 AM  

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