For our first set of antics in Argentina Maureen and I walked about to see all the “national things.” National Library, National Park, National Cemetery, National Museum etc.
Congress Building; Pretty Argentine Street; Monument to some dude with horses
Our hostel is centrally located to everything, so in the first week we were able to walk everywhere (no need for getting lost on the bus system). We walked to the Recoleta Cemetery past the Congressional House and various coffee shops, restaurants, and, of course, multiple Mc-Starbucks. Like Mendoza, this area of Buenos Aires has gorgeous tree lined boulevards and cobblestone streets. With fast paced people, old ladies in oversized fur coats, wall to wall smokers, little mom-and-pop corner stores, and tall building overcast the city feels a bit like the New York City in my head. But there is something distinctly foreign about the city. Unlike Chile, everyone does not say hello to you in the street (unless they are all too friendly construction workers), and you don’t have to pay to use the bathrooms. When you order a drink for one person, they bring two glasses to the table, but they don’t do free tap water.
On our walk to the Recoleta, we ran into the Engineering Faculty of the University of Buenos Aires, and old Cathedral-looking building under renovations. Inside they had an exhibit of technological advancements over the past 100 or so years.
Banana in the park
We bought some bananas off the street and ate them in a park outside the Recoleta. They didn’t have any tours running in English on the day we visited, so we wandered around the cemetery looking at the decadent tombs and crypts. I eavesdropped on the Spanish tour and learned some interesting things about Eva Peron’s body (also buried at the Recoleta). Apparently during the dictatorship they exhumed her body and shipped her to Italy to prevent her grave site from being a rallying point for opposition.
Recoleta; Eva Peron’s Monument; Recoleta Cat that jumped off a headstone and scared the bejesus out of me
After a Milonesa lunch, (which if you don’t know what that is, you should promptly look it up and find somewhere you can try it) we went to the National Library, an oddly T-shaped building that had no visible books inside. It sits on the National Park, which runs down the main Avenue of the Liberator. We walked through the park to the National Museum. The National Museum had an impressive collection of both Argentine and European Art. There was even an early model of Rodin’s “The Kiss.”
National Library; Auditorium inside the National Library; odd T shapedness of the Library
I can’t stop comparing Argentina to Chile. I find myself thinking that I like Argentina more then my study abroad home. But maybe that’s the difference between living in a place and just visiting. Having Mo here might make all the difference too.
Maureen and I enjoying some flan at a famous Tango Restaurant