March 30, 2004

Donīt Cry For Me Argentina

Not that there is really a reason for Argentina to cry for me at all, but whenever I think of Argentina that song goes through my head. As you may have guessed Sarah and I are in Argentina now. You are probably wondering where the new pictures are that I have been promising once we got to Argentina, well you are going to have to wait a few more days. Click below to read my good excuses for this and what we have been doing since we last wrote.

From Montevideo we took the (expensive) ferry from downtown to downtown Buenos Aires. The ferry is called Buquebus and is a fast cat done right, except for the price of $50 US one way for the 3 hour ride (you don't want to even know how much it costs to take a car). The only problem I had with the ferry is that you couldn't go outside which was pretty dissapointing.

We stayed in Buenos Aires for about a week, mostly at the Milhouse hostel right downtown. I personally think that it should informally be called the Nuthouse or Partyhouse because most of the people there party all night. It seems like clubs in Buenos Aires don't get busy until 2 - 2:30am so most people stay at the hostel drinking, playing cards and smoking profusely until 1 or 2am and then go out until dawn or later. A little side track on smoking. It seems like 90 percent of other travellers smoke. This wouldn't be so bad in Canada because you can't smoke inside in most places but it seems to be the opposite in south america, everyone smokes inside. This is a problem because most places are air conditioned which means that the air is recycled to keep it cool which means the smoke just builds up in a room until I have basically smoked a pack of cigarettes second hand over the course of a night. I am pretty close to getting a pipe or box of cigars and blowing cigar smoke in the general direction of other smokers to see how they like it.

Ok, enough about smoking, what was it about Buenos Aires that kept us there for a week you might ask? Well plenty of things. First of all it is a huge city and is pretty interesting to just walk around the streets such as the main avenue, 9 de Julio, one of the largest avenues in the world (8 lanes each direction). The recently restored Puerto Madero is interesting to walk around as well and is where we had our first sushi since we left vancouver (although they were out of tuna!) and walked around an old navy training vessel that is now a museum. The second night we were in Buenos Aires we went to a soccer game, Boca vs. Deportivo Cali. This game was better attended than the match we saw in Rio. Due to some heavy traffic the group from the hostel we were with got to the match just minutes before kickoff. When we got there we were greated witha huge crowd cheering loudly and jumping up and down all as one. It was an impressive sight from our seats which were pretty high up near midfield. The first half was scoreless but Boca opened up the scoring in the second half and went on to a 3-0 win which pleased the home crowd a lot. At one point the crowd was jumping in our section and you could feel the stands swaying.

The next night we went to a Tango show, Tanguera, which was one of the things that Sarah really wanted to do. I thought it was a well produced and entertaining production although a bit short compared to other theatrical productions I have been to. I did manage to fall asleep briefly during the show since I was up until 5am drinking with an Irish fellow the night before and hadn't had much sleep before going the show. Sarah gave me a sharp jab shortly after I dozed off and I managed to stay awake for the rest of the show.

Another hilight was a tour of the Teatro Colon. The tour was really interesting because it gave a behind the stage view of the inner workings of the theatre. We got to see a box seat, the normal seats, rehersal rooms with dancers practicing, costume storage and creation (separate floors for sets, shoes, dresses and mens outfits) . It was way more interesting than I was expecting.

Other hilights were going to the cemetary in Recolleta where Evita's tomb is. The cemetary is a huge place and the coffins are visible in the tombs. Kind of a creepy place. The museum of art nearby to the cemetary was interesting as well. They have quite the collection including a Picasso, van Gogh, Monet, Pollick and other famous artists.

We met some pretty cool people at the hostel too. Lots of Irish, a unproportionatly large number of people from Portland, some cool Kiwis, a smattering of Norwegians and even a few Canadians (from Edmonton and Calgary this time). One of the guys from Portland is walking from Tierra del Fuego to Alaska. He seemed pretty sane given this expedition. He is over a year into his walk and is just in Northern Argentina, he was in Buenos Aires visting a friend from Portland. I totally forget this guys name but he said that he is writing about his travels online so google might be able to help you find more about him if you are interested (I think, just think, that his name may have been Ian).

It was kind of sad leaving Buenos Aires but we did and we are now in Cordoba on our way to Mendoza where we will stay with our friend Dieter that we met in Salvador. It is here that I hope we will be able to upload our existing pictures (a few hundered). But in the mean time you can look at David Huska's pictures since he just recently finished a similar trip through central and south america. The main difference between his pictures and ours is that sometimes we are in our pictures and he actually took his camera out at night in Salvador during carnival.

Posted by bforsyth at March 30, 2004 01:15 PM

don't cry for me argentina is one of my favorite songs!! madonna is the best!

Posted by: davepop at March 30, 2004 03:20 PM

i didnt post that last comment. whoever did is probably gay.

Posted by: the real davepop at March 30, 2004 08:41 PM

ok got me! yes, i am gay!

Posted by: davepop at March 31, 2004 10:52 AM

i guess i walked into that one, didn't i?

Posted by: the real davepop at March 31, 2004 06:37 PM