s/y Nine of Cups
Paraguay
September  2006
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Republica de Paraguay

Capital City:
    Asunción
Land area:         157.048 sq miles..
                     about the size of California
Population:         ~6 million
Languages:         Spanish & Guarani
Currency:           Guarani  (5400G = $1 US)
Political Units:    18 departments

Paraguayans drink lots of mate, too, however they drink it cold and bitter...terrere. We
were not sure what to expect in Paraguay. U. S. citizens need a visa to enter (a
reciprocal thing) and we weren`t sure if we`d be welcome. On the contrary, the people
were hospitable...warm and friendly as we´ve come to expect in South America.

Paraguayan specialties include chipas (similar to an empanada made of manioc flour,
cheese and eggs), mosto (cane juice) and a specialty multi-colored spider web lace
called nanduti (nyan-doo-TEE).

Only the crew visited. Nine of Cups stayed in Uruguay with Jelly. We only stayed four
days...wish that it was more. We took a tour from Asuncion to San Lorenzo and several
small towns in the country to get at least a taste of rural Paraguay.
Asunción
The international bridge across the
Rio Parana from Posadas,
Argentina to Encarnacion,
Paraguay. Crossing the bridge took
minutes. Completing the border
formalities was a long two hours.
A military guard stands watch at the Casa
de la Independencia historical musuem.
We headed by bus directly to the capital city of
Asuncion. We managed to catch a "bottle dance"
presentation while at the cultural center. Below, we
were awakened in the morning by cathedral bells.
A walking tour of the city offered lots to
see. Above Palacio Gobierno at sunset.
Once home to the Jesuits, the Templo
Yaguaron above appears simple and
serene. It served as both church and
fortification. However, the interior design
and decoration was anything but simple.
Check out the altar to the right.
Asuncion street scene...colonial charm mixes
with modern day and McDonalds a block
away.
We couldn´t resist. We had to have a sample of
the
nanduti lace, a specialty of  Itaugua,
Paraguay.
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