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Friday, February 10, 2006

people, cars, chaos! this is the place to be!

i love buenos aires! but downtown is crazy! so many cars and lots of bad drivers. there´s a street called avenida florida and it´s just clothing stores and restaurants and it´s about 15 blocks of pedetrian only traffic and there´s so many people that you can´t walk anywhere! worse than london. buenos aires is huge! it feels like a cross between nyc and paris. everything is big: the streets (avenida 9 de julio is the biggest street you´ll ever see!), the stores, the cafes, the portions in restaurants. you eat very well here. thanks to the devalued argentian peso, food and alocohol is practically free! even my dad is shopping and he usually never buys anything because he thinks everything is expensive!
$3 argentinian pesos= $1 usd
lunch for 4 with non alcoholic drinks was $25 pesos
a pair of jeans that i bought today was $35 pesos
yesterday i had a paella which is like a spanish pie with potatos the size of a big plate. i could only eat half! $11 pesos!
a bottle of argentinian wine that would cost $20 in vancouver is $2 pesos!
this isn´t a good place to be a vegetarian. there´s meat in everything! i thought my paella yesterday was vegetarian but it had ham in it. and most restaurants are "pizza, pasta y carne".
buenos aires isn´t scary at all. i feel safer here than in montevideo. the panhandlers are polite too! everyone is so nice and friendly.
i went to cafe tortoni yesterday and it´s really a must see in buenos aires. it´s the oldest cafe founded in 1858 and all the original furniture, wall paper, wooden wall panels are original. this place was so big. it looks even bigger than the picture that i posted a few weeks ago. you can´t just walk in. there´s a lineup and a doorman could only let you in if there´s a free table. there´s almost 100 tables in there and it´s dark with paintings from all the artists that spent any time there.  
i went to a really nice neighborhood today called palermo soho. i didn´t realize it but it´s actually the armenian neighbourhood. lots of great furniture, lighting, vintage clothing and antique stores. it´s more quiet and residential which is what i needed after spending the day downtown yesterday. we´re staying across the street from the obelisko which is a huge monument in the middle of the plaza at avenida 9 de julio. at the plaza there were lots of people drumming until very late last night. they were playing Murga which is traditional uruguayan music.
i just came back from a mall on avenida santa fe. it´s not really a traditional looking mall. it´s called a galleria here and it´s sort of half outdoors. i went there for a record store that i wanted to check out called abraxas. i bought a francoise hardy and an intalian folk beat comp. record. records are the only thing that isn´t a huge bargain. i looked at the rest of the mall and it was only vintage clothing stores. there wasn´t anything great. this isn´t a great city for fashion. i don´t think most people could afford anything that´s imported from anywhere else. everything that i´ve bought so far is made in argentina.
you don´t see people walking down the street drinking mate the way they do in montevide. maybe because it´s a faster paced city. i´ve seen more modern high rises here than in montevideo and the older buildings are in better shape.
the stones are really big here and the rest of south america. they´re playing here next week and everywhere you go, you see someone with a stones shirt. my cousin in montevideo was going to travel to montreal to see them but it was sold out.
have to go now. i miss everyone and i´m thinking about you!
you´re going to see me tanned and maybe 5-10 pds heavier!


Anonymous Anonymous said...

"bought a francoise hardy and an intalian folk beat comp"

Sweet deal! Let's have a listening party when you get back :)

9:13 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh that was me, Ryan @ work who posted the last thing

9:13 AM  

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