Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Home of Tango

Daryll writes:

Our focus for our first week in Buenos Aires was to arrange shipping of our bikes to Johannesburg and were glad that we dedicated all our time to it.  We drop off the bikes on Wed. March 9th and if all goes well with customs, they will fly out on a South African Airways flight on Fri. March 11th and we will follow on Sun. March 13th.  Now that we got the logistics taken care off, we are making more time for sightseeing.

Wall mural in La Boca
We are staying at Kilca Hostel and upon arriving last week, we met a South African couple (David & Ewa) that were awaiting the arrival of their Moto Guzzi from Cape Town  I had also told our friends (Michael, Jing & Sean) about the hostel and they arrived a few days later.  So we ended up being one big biker family at the hostel and thanks to Michael who prepared a lovely pasta dish for us.

Evening dinner
Buenos Aires is a large city with an excellent network of public transport that includes both an underground subway system and efficient bus network and also has one of the widest streets in the world eminating from the Oblisque.  On our way back from La Boca, we missed our stop and ended up at the end of the line and the bus we were on had terminated, so had to get off the bus and get onto another one going back in the direction we had wanted.  It gave us a good sightseeing tour of the city though.  We had heard so many different stories of how dangerous the city is and that pick-pockets are all over the place.  In the short time that we have been here, we have only met friendly people that always offered their help when asked for directions.

It’s Mardi Gras and there where small Carnivals all over the city this past weekend.  It’s the first time that Buenos Aires was having celebrations, so it is still new for the locals; however it didn’t take too long for everyone to get into the spirit of spraying foam on each other.  Our friend David was the worst and the little kids would chase him around as he retaliated.

Angela and I decided to spread out our sightseeing over a few days, so not to get tired in the heat.  Our first stop "Recoletta" to visit the grave of Eva Peron who served as First Lady of Argentina from 1946 until her death in 1952 and became popular for speaking on behalf of labor rights for trade unions.

As we walked around, we came across a few dog walkers and found a few that herded over 18 dogs, simply talented as all the dogs were so well behaved under their control.  Don't know how Echo would have done?  In the La Boca district, where the famous soccer club has it’s stadium, the restaurants on the quaint colorful streets have free tango shows to draw patrons to their restaurants.

We also headed to the old part of town, San Telmo District with cobblestone streets and found Casa Minima, the narrowest building in BA.

Casa Minima
Our German friend Paul had also arrived in BA, so we had arranged to meet for coffee one afternoon.   While we headed south to Ushuaia, he spent some time in Paraguay, Uruguay and Brazil and still has another month in Argentina and Chile before shipping back home.  We had spent Christmas evening with Paul in Quito, Ecuador and it was nice catching up with him and have arranged to see each other again once we get to Europe.

Wall mural in the San Telmo District

National Congress

Old guy in Church

New photos added to the Argentina photo album.
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