Lifestyle, Trips

How we feel leaving Argentina

Hello friends of Sin Rumbo. We are now two weeks away from our return to Canada. We have been living in Mendoza, Argentina, for about ten years. We started coming to Argentina in 2010, a short trip back then, then staying longer and longer until we established ourselves as permanent residents. At the begining Mendoza felt like paradise. We enjoyed the laid back pace of the locals, with a lot of time spent in cafés, under an almost permanent clear blue sky. Even the winter months are pleasant with temperatures rarely dropping to freezing.

Mendoza is the heart of wine production in Argentina, with well over 1200 wineries in the province. During the day one can hike in the mountains to the west, the Andes, and at night have a gourmet dinner in a winery.

Amazing views along route 94
Bodega La Abeja

After three years dealing with immigration we finally obtained our residency and that’s when we started to realize the frustration of life in Argentina. That subject alone could easily fill a number of blog posts. We pushed forward and I obtained my Argentine driver’s licence. Then in 2016 we purchased our Ford Ranger. That was another opportunity for more frustration, this time dealing with licencing and vehicle registries. Building the camper in the truck was a challenge as well. Argentina has many restritive laws that make it difficult for the country to import goods and just as difficult for argentine companies to export their products. As of this writing Argentina has 25 different exchange rates between the US dollar and the argentine peso. Sometimes just finding a few screws can take a whole morning. Many products easily available elsewhere are unavailable here. Electronics is particularly expensive at 2 to 3 times what you’d pay elsewhere. That is when you can get the product. Some of the important electronic items for the truck we bought while visiting Canada and brought back with us to Mendoza. There will be many things we will miss about Mendoza and Argentina, and also many we will be glad to leave behind. No country is perfect. While in Argentina we have been priviledged to visit some destinations that many might dream about but will never get to see. Our first extended trip with the Ford Ranger took us all the way down to Tierra Del Fuego and the southernmost city in the world: Ushuaia.

The other memorable trip was our expedition to Chile, Bolivia and Peru. We drove the truck to the city of Cusco, Peru. That was a stressful adventure. I thought argentine drivers are crazy but peruvian drivers are suicidal. Still it was worth the experience as we got to drive the remote Bolivian altiplano at almost 5000 m of altitude. For 3 days we met only a handful of vehicles and experienced raw solitude in one of the harshest environment on the planet.

Thanks to our Ford Ranger we were able to explore Argentina, the amazing provinces north of Mendoza, the Atlantic coast, and escape regularly to the Andes for a few days of remote camping.

We are moving back to Canada with many unforgetable memories of unique places and exciting experiences. During our time in Mendoza we also met some incredibly nice people with whom we became friends and on who we know we could rely if need be. It is time to turn another page of our life, but we intend the next few years to be a continuation of our adventures. Between Canada and the US many more trips and wild camps are calling us. We still do not have a date for our Ford vehicle ordered in October 2022. It is difficult to keep waiting without at least an idea of when it will be available. We just have to be patient as there are not really any good alternatives. All we know is that we on our side are ready for it, and can start the build as soon as I can drive it off the dealer lot. Wish us luck and stay tuned!

In the meantime I encourage you to watch the videos of our trips on the Sin Rumbo youtube channel.

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