Submitted by Matilde Yahni
The fourth gathering of the Argentinian pink paddlers took place in San Ignacio, Misiones, located in northeast Argentina. San Ignacio is a small city nestled in the forest 240 km away from the world famous Iguazú Falls.
Fundación Azaleas del Parana organized the event, hosted 250 pink paddlers from all over Argentina, and made us feel as like very special guests. On the first day we paddled in kayaks on the Parana River (having a dragon boat is a dream to fulfil). Several of us also enjoyed a refreshing swim. Lunch was a selection of local favourites: "sopa paraguaya", "chipá", and guaraní dishes prepared with "mandioca". Zumba class and folk dances, like the "chamamé" and "ranchera", eased our digestion. Ten different bands played for us the first night. Our paddlers danced to local favourites, Argentine pop music, even Beatles and Luis Fonzi with enthusiasm until long after midnight. The whole town embraced the “pink invasion.” So much fun!
Day two brought rain and new friendships! Misiones is the land of YERBA MATE. Mate is usually made from a hollowed gourd. Everyone was sipping our national hot beverage called MATE and its cold version called TERERÉ . In between mates, we danced in a wonderful festive atmosphere of immense celebration of life. REMAR POR LA VIDA (paddling for life) was the spirit of these beautiful ladies from all over the country.
Misiones was a true “fiesta.” Thanks to everyone who participated. Gratitude to FUNDACIÓN AZALEAS DEL PARANA for their warmth and dedication to organize such a fantastic reunion filled with love and companionship. Every minute of this gathering will stay in our minds and hearts forever.
Dr Matilde Yahni
Captain of Rosas del Plata
IBCPC national representative
PS: The economic situation in Argentina prevents many of these teams from fulfilling their dream of purchasing their first dragon boat. Any assistance towards this goal would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance!