Hey, I'm Frank. I've just finished a 5 month journey through South America! Hope you enjoy these ten blogs documenting my time there...

Europe » Romania » Transilvania » Brasov » Bran June 30th 2012

We landed to a rapturous applause by passangers as the shifty-looking Wizzair plane bounced off the runway at Targu-Mures municipal airfield. Emblazoned proudly on the side of the terminal are the words 'Transilvania Airport'. I feel rather cheated, having believed there is a 'y' involved. Bram Stoker, the Irish gothic writer, envisioned a medieval wild-west, inhabited by the vampire Dracula, Van Helsing, and all kinds of ludicrous creatures. Transylvania looks vast, dark and overpowering in much the same way today, except with more car dealerships. Many more. With a group of six other teachers, we wait for another who hasn't come through arrivals. We later learn that he missed his flight entirely. Our driver from the airport only speaks when pointing out the odd prostitute (alleged) walking by the side of the road. That, and likening ... read more
Bridges to residences
The view from our hostel
The Romanians are generally very proud of their recent accession to EU membership

South America » Peru » Lima » Lima » Miraflores August 4th 2011

On the morning of my intended travel to Aguas Calientes, in the foothills of Machu Picchu, I awaken with a gloriously bad headache. Being in the land that brought us the ¨Pisco Sour¨, I can hardly blame myself, though I was pleasantly surprised at my own ability to stomach so much egg white in an alcholic beverage. Trudging down to the restaurant, I decided on a light breakfast- less for the altitude issue and more for my distrust of my own stomach. My lift to the train station arrived pretty late. We then had to pick up a couple at another hotel before arriving at the station. On the way, after some small talk chatter with the couple, who asked where I was from, I made the comment that I was from England, ¨Which was an ... read more
We're shown how to dye clothes with natural materials, including an insects blood.
Our train at Aguas Calientes.
Aguas Calientes nestled in the jungle.

South America » Peru » Cusco » Cusco July 31st 2011

This I think will be my final set of blogs, and as Jo has just noted on here, I´ve been enjoying myself far too much to remember that I should be on here telling you guys about it all! My last few days in Argentina were reserved for friends; saying goodbye and promising them that I´ll stay in touch. I´m not usually all that sentimental but I certainly felt more disconnected once I left, and I missed them all after a couple of days. Over the months, I´d been lucky enough to accumulate a number of great friends and contacts, and I´ll always be thankful for that. I was assured by Celeste and Mikaela that the kids would miss me, and my last couple of lessons I think confirmed that for me- we didn´t study too ... read more
He came pretty close...
Talking politics in Plaza Mejor
Sun mosaic at Parque L´Amor

South America » Argentina » San Luis » San Luis June 12th 2011

Yeah, sorry guys it was radio silence for a while there... When you´re a teacher, time flies by- sometimes because you having fun, and other times because you´ve just blacked out again trying to think of original ideas for classes. Another month has passed in this mad town and I have another month of awesome memories to share. Problem being, so much has happened this month I can´t for the life of me think of how to start this blog entry. Some of the stories are also probably too sensitive to stick up on a public blog I know people here read. So what I´ve decided to do is put tons of photos onto one entry just to give you a brief idea of the stuff I´ve been getting up to. So enjoy, and sorry for ... read more
recieving good old-fashioned zero anesthetic field surgery
These people aren´t great drivers...

South America » Argentina » San Luis » San Luis May 7th 2011

"God is energy" says the woman opposite me. Her eyes widen. I don´t know whether she´s being comically dramatic or whether, if I let out a little puff of chuckle, she´ll break my skull on the fish paste bowl in front of me. Either way, I smile and nod. I am sitting in the dining room of Marcello´s mother´s house. Next to me is Marcello´s brother, who speaks near perfect English. I kind of want to ask him what´s going on, and whether I´m about to be killed and eaten. But he´s listening, straight-faced, to his mother. I slowly and discreetly move my hand towards my fork in case she strikes. Eating with us, we have Luisina (the femaley-half of the dynamic duo who have taken me into their abode), Marcello´s grandmother; a 95-year old wit ... read more
Macello and Luisina
San Luis is... really dusty.
No, thank you guys. Thank YOU.

South America » Argentina » San Luis » San Luis April 27th 2011

The most frustrating thing that can happen to a writer of blogs is most likely an ambiguous black button on your camera that, when lightly pressed, deletes all of your hard work, pausing only to spurt out a provocative little "thank you" before it switches itself off. Regardless of the lack of decent photos, I think it´s been an interesting couple of weeks. A little surreal in places, but all in all, interesting. First of all, a little background; unfortunately, Nahuel is currently going through a custody battle with Tiao´s biological mother, which has resulted in an investigation by social services into how Tiao lives with Nahuel and Silvana. I can atteste to knowing that Tiao lives well, in a loving, secure family environment- but social services obviously doesn´t know this. Before this development, I was ... read more
My new home.
Stop looking so moody!
Con mi amigas!

South America » Argentina » San Luis » San Luis April 7th 2011

"ARGGGHHHH!" I´m running barefooted, as quickly as I can, down a largely deserted street in the provincial border town of La Punta. The sand, grit and little pieces of glass cut into my soles. " OW, GOD!" An obese man observes me whizzing past from his rusty chair outside one of the houses with a huge grin on his face- like Jabba the Hut he wobbles, laughing at the sight of me. I hear little pockets of chuckling residents as I speed back down the road towards Marissio´s English Institute. Twenty seconds ago I was stroking a friendly-looking dog -it looked as though it would be the last one to have any mental illness... What happened? I hear it snarling and nipping at my feet. I lost my sandals about thirty metres back. My feet hurt ... read more
An outpost shrine over the sierras.
If you can´t see it, it says cold=constipado: what the actual hell?!

South America » Argentina » San Luis » San Luis March 31st 2011

Teaching is in essence a peculiar activity; being a teacher in the first place assumes you have some innate knowledge of the subject you´re teaching, along with the authority and confidence to teach it. Yet teachers sometimes have to study harder than the students themselves. I came here thinking that teaching English would be fairly simple, as, you know, I speak it. But when in the first lesson of a ´first certificate group´class, someone asks you about prepositions, and ends their sentence with "presumably", you need to start revising those assumptions... Argentina had a long weekend a couple of days back of four days; a time I thought could be spent asleep and enjoying the sun with my earphones in. Not so. Turns out that Nahuel´s Father (who´s really nice but scares me half to death ... read more
Nature pic- same old; grass, some water, maybe a lizard somewhere...

South America » Argentina » San Luis » San Luis March 22nd 2011

My time in B.A. had it´s ups and downs. An up, perhaps, was talking to a German guy and Dutch girl about whether it was ethical to be attracted to Disney characters. We concluded that when it comes to the little mermaid, anything goes. You all know about my down of course, and my new friend Fernando the locksmith. It´s now time to say goodbye to the other volunteers, and make my own perilously solo journey across Argentina to a little province named San Luis. My co-ordinator Kika finds that I´m the most prone to incident, and so accompanies me herself to the coach that will take me half way over this vast country. The others, obviously, are capable of doing it by themselves. She asks the coach staff to make sure I get off in ... read more
And them with Tiao
And in the beginning, there was food...
...and Elton John...

South America » Argentina » Buenos Aires March 13th 2011

Que? "blah blah blah blah blah (en español) Que? "blah blah blah!" I don´t know what you want! No entiendo! I am sitting in my designated seat on the second leg of my two flights to Argentina. This, unfortunately for me is the flight from Texas to Buenos Aires, and so actually has spanish speaking people on board. The woman next to me evidently wants something, and wants me to get out of my seat, and I, in turn, show her that this is in fact my seat so... GET OFF MY BACK! (saying this would be rude, so I just thought it: passionately). An english speaking Argentine girl, visibly frustrated at the sound of our exchange told me that the woman wanted me to change seats with her friend. This sounded fairly reasonable, so I ... read more
You´ve been tango´d!
B.A. showing off again...
B.A.´s take on the open-air restaurant

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