Hola! Friday we decided to buy bus tickets and head to Uruguay for a spontaneous less than 24 hour trip! We bought the tickets in the morning and went to grab some empanadas for lunch quickly before everyone had to get back to class. After class we all went home to take a nap and have dinner. We went out to the bar to grab a drink and then headed off to the train station at midnight. Our bus was supposed to leave at 1am but it ended up leaving at 2. Busses are always late here! We all got into our seats and fell asleep. I set my alarm for 630am because that was around the time we were supposed to arrive. We got to Colon, Argentina at 7am, got off the bus and got coffee and some breakfast. We had to wait until 8 to call the taxi company to take us across the border. We called the taxis and were on our way across the border into Uruguay! When we got there, we met our professor's friend. She lives in the city we visited so she volunteered to show us around. We got to see the basilica and go on a city tour. Paysandu is a very small city but still has a lot of Uruguay pride. We happened to be there right before Uruguay's first World Cup game so everyone was crazy! After a few hours of exploring it was time to head back to the border. To get into Uruguay we didn't have to pay. When we came to Argentina we had to pay an entry fee. When I studied here in 2012 they put the entry fee receipt in my passport as a sticker and it is valid for 10 years so I have it until 2022. This year, they changed their regulations so everyone had to pay online and then print out the receipt and carry it with them. Three of the six people who crossed with us didn't bring their Argentina entry fee's with them to Uruguay!!!! Thank goodness our professor's friend was still with us at that point because I was trying so hard to stay calm but had a bad feeling that they were going to have to stay in Uruguay. Eventually, after many supervisors visits, they decided to let them back into Argentina and stamp their passports. I'm not really sure why they weren't just able to check the computer because all of our passports were stamped with Argentina when we arrived May 28 and said we were allowed to stay in the country for 90 days, clearly they weren't illegal or sneaking in! We made it back to Colon and across the border with 30 minutes to spare before our bus was supposed to leave. We got a pizza and just as we were finishing eating our bus showed up! 5 and a half hours later we arrived safely back in Rosario. My host mom made milanesa for dinner again and we had bananas with dulce de leche (a caramel type of spread) for dessert. It was a very stressful day but it all worked out in the end!
Me at the Uruguay border!! Another country checked off my bucket list and a new stamp in my passport! :)