March 2016

Our light-headed trip back from the Juanico vineyard was not by steam train but by coach which wasn’t quite as grand a style of transport but did allow for stops that aren’t directly adjacent to the trainline. The first of these as we were completing our day’s excursion in Uruguay was a very short photo stop at Parque Batlle (not battle), a public park in Montevideo with an important monument called La Carreta.

La Carreta is a national monument made from bronze and takes the form of oxen pulling a wagon. Its location is atop a small hill behind a pond. A path runs up behind the monument so you can get pretty close but the monument itself has plenty of signs around in numerous languages indicating that it is out of bounds to visitors. In addition a guard of sorts (possibly a volunteer) stands nearby to make sure that nobody gets close to the monument. We’d also been told by our guide as we got close to Parque Batlle that we could take pictures from in front and from the path but that we couldn’t get close to the monument. Why am I telling you that the monument is out of bounds and that people are not allowed near the monument and that this information is clearly posted around and that the guide had told us not to get near the monument and that a local Uruguayan person was close by making sure nobody got near the monument? Because some people who go on cruises seem to believe that rules are for other people and that they’re entitled to do whatever they want when they’re abroad. Suffice it to say that some shouting from the monument’s guardian in the direction of a handful of our fellow passengers on two occasions took place while I grabbed some photos of it.

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