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Sunday, March 05, 2006

los boliches (bars)

7 years ago people didn´t go out the way they do now. the only bars around were the ones where you saw older drunk men. things have really changed. it happened 5 years ago when they changed la ciudad vieja (the old city) to a pieatonal (6 blocks for pedetrians only) and it`s mainly boliches and bailes (dances) one after another. the tables go on the sidwalks and people walk down the street drinking. most places are dead before 2am! people really go out late and stay up late. it`s common to stay up until 5am and you can still see people drinking at 6-7am. well i didn`t stay up that late last night but i still had fun. i went with my cousins juan and hagop. hagop gave me a painting he did in water colour and some of his music that he recorded recently. he used to be in a band but now he`s playing solo. just him singing with an acoustic guitar. we went to this place in parque rodo. parque rodo is an amusement park that i used to go to when we still lived here. it´s not an amusement park for older kids, you really have to be under 10 to enjoy it. they have those tea cup rides with the cups going in circles. there`s this bar in that area called el living which was good. they played all kinds of music and they had an upstairs where you can eat. you can have dinner at all the boliches but it´s more expensive than regular restaurants. i had a alcoholic drink you can only have in uruguay. it´s called grappamiel and it´s a mixture of grapes and honey. you can even find it at the grocery stores. they serve it in a cognac glass. it´s extremely strong and sweet but it´s so delicious. after one of those i felt so warm and drunk! then we went to la ciudad vieja to a place called la ronda. it`s a few blocks away from the huge crowds in la pietonal. it´s close to the sea wall. the place inside is tiny and almost completely dark with record covers on the wall. they played old leonard cohen and some lou reed that i really liked. it´s him doing a duet with another woman. then we went around the corner to this boliche called amok. they played the ramones and bikini kill. by then it´s 4am and i`m exhausted and can´t drink anymore so we left. i had fun and was really surprised at how lively everything is. at one point i couldn´t walk with all the crowds. lots of people were out and my cousin said it was a slow night. apparently drinking while you walk down the street is a trend now. it wasn´t something that was popular in the past. you buy a 970 ml bottle of beer from a bar then leave the bar and share it outside with your friends by drinking it from the bottle.

they call music from uruguay. el rock nacional. i wasn´t sure what it meant until hagop explained it to me last night. it makes sense if you use the word national. if you live in argentina, it´s rock nacional from argentina. el rock nacional is bigger than ever here. he told me the basist from his old band are in a well known montevideo metal band now. and he gave me a list of bands that i should listen to that i wrote down but don´t have with me at the moment.

there´s a word in spanish that i really like because i can´t really find a similar word for it in english. it`s "lo siento" and it means i´m sorry. i like the fact that siento means feeling as well. so you´re empathizing with the other person. there´s also the workd pardon for sorry but it´s not as strong as lo siento. pardon is if you bump into someone or if you`re late for an appointment. a sales person used lo siento recently when i was shopping and there wasn´t something in my size. that`s the first time i remember hearing it.

now i have to figure out who stuff for stuff in my suitcase as i received many gifts at the reunion last night. i´m leaving monday night!


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