Survived the 1st week of Buenos Aires!

Trip Start Jul 28, 2009
Trip End Aug 10, 2010

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Where I stayed
Bulnes 1852, Mirta and Alejandro Frontera

Flag of Argentina  ,
Monday, September 14, 2009

The Lonely Planet guidebook says that the city of Buenos Aires is "sexy and alive and extremely confident". I did not agree with this the first week I was here, but after I got over my culture shock of a big city and actually looked at all the culture, art, and wonderful people, I can agree.

It is definitely alive and the Tango dancers are so sexy.  There is a definite big gap between the rich and the poor.  More so here than in Cusco.  The economy is not good here and I have heard from the locals that the rich keeps getting richer while the poor keeps getting poorer.  You can definitely see the two extremes here with the homeless and the rich driving their expensive cars.  This was not the case in Cusco, where everyone worked real hard for little or nothing and there was very few beggars.  I guess maybe because everyone was poor.

I have seen a single mother nursing her baby and her other 2 children begging for money.  It really angered me that she would allow herself to have another baby when she already had 2 other children begging for money!  I really wanted to give her a piece of my mind!  I really felt for those poor dirty children with no shoes on.  Speaking to some of the locals, they told me that some of the mothers have the children to put them to work, that its a money maker for them. 

The people of Buenos Aires are called “portenos” .  They led a totally different lifestyle than what we are used to; they eat late, party late, are super passionate about futbol (soccer) and they would have a coffee before a beer!  The politicians are corrupt and the economy sucks but they manage well by hanging out late in the restaurants or cafés!

Everywhere we walked there was posters, Tshirts and souvenirs of Ernesto "Che" Guevara and Nik kept asking who was this man!  So our history lesson for the first week in Argentina was about "Che" Guevara.  Nik researched who he was and made up questions for me, then we downloaded a movie from the history channel that discussed his revolutionary mission in life in Cuba, Congo and Bolivia where he was shot and buried by the military.  As I didn't know much about him either, we both found it interesting to study.  We also spent a couple of days quizzing each other on the countries and capitals of South America.  As we were studying the world map, we realized that Asia will probably be the hardest one to study since they have such weird names for both the countries and capitals and there are so many countries to remember.

We took a walk to Puerto Madero, which is the port area as well as a tourist spot, with a long walkway with restaurants along the docks.  We found a beautiful old boat which had been converted into a museum, called Museo Fragata Sarmiento.  This ship has traveled around the world 37 times between 1899 and 1938.  It was built in Birkenhand, England in 1897 for 125,000 British Pounds.  This impeccably maintained ship never did participate in combat.  They did have the Ship pet dog, Lampazo stuffed in a glass box, which was kind of creepy.  They also said that President Theodore Roosevelt has been a distinguished guest aboard the ship.

We also visited Manzana de Luces, which is where the Jesuits had built underground tunnels in the 1800's but they were not discovered until the early 1900's as they were building the subways.
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Alice on

I've really been enjoying your blog but I was disappointed in your comments about the woman and her 3 children. What gives you the right to judge her so harshly? You have no idea how her child was conceived or why.

worldtraveler2 on

I distinctly remember this mother because I asked her if I could buy her children some food and she told me straight "No, no, dinero, dinero!" No, no, money, money! Dont know why I didnt include that in this entry!!! Too much editing, I think.

Thank you for reading our blog, its very much appreciated and we welcome any comments you have.

Emily on

If she were raped, that's one thing; otherwise, I totally agree with you in that it is irresponsible!

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