Have you ever gone to a really nice restaurant, one that is touted by friends and critics alike, and just not enjoyed your meal? Is the restaurant really not that great or did you just order the wrong dish? That's how I feel about Montevideo, Uruguay. In fact, that's how I feel about South America in general so far. Since we left our friends in Chillan, Chile, I haven't been that thrilled with South America. Is it that South America is not my cup of tea? Or is it just that we ordered the wrong dish from the menu i.e. we didn't pick the right cities/countries to go to on this continent. Maybe Peru, Brazil or Boliva would have been more to my liking. Someplace where there is an indiginous population versus a population of European descendants.
Of course, there is another factor to take into consideration...timing. Here we are in the last month of our trip. We have been there and done that all across the globe. Would anyplace really be new and exciting at this point? Would Montevideo, Uruguay be one of the highlights of my year had it been one of our first stops vs. one of our last? I'm thinking not, but I can't say for sure.
I can still remember my mental state one year ago in May of 2008. I was physically still in Cincinnati, still in the US, but emotionally, I was already going around the world. There was still some planning left to do, still loose ends to tie up at home, but I didn't want to be making plans for the trip any longer, I just wanted to be ON IT!
Now, here it is, one year later. There are lots of mixed feelings about coming home but either way, we will be home in just over a month. Our daily "To Do" lists include not only things like buy more leche, see Presidential Home and buy tickets for the Brazilian Ballet. It includes things like, sign up the kids for summer camp, contact school regarding enrollment for next year and find out date our renters will be moving out. Aspects of home have fully infiltrated our lives here in South America and like it or not, had a impact on our emotional state.
So we pass our time here in Montevideo checking out the Carnaval Museum, looking at historical monuments, browsing the market and planning for our return home.
It will be interesting to see what Ecuador brings. I hope we can go out with a bang and not a bust.