The Other Side
We spent a week during the Holidays in Buenos Aires. BA is often called the Paris of South America, which is a pretty hard claim to live up to. In fact, parts of Buenos Aires look just like Paris. The green spaces, the large statues, the grand boulevards, and the cosmopolitan atmosphere is really pretty impressive. Their shoe and leather shops are second to none, and their sense of style in their restaurants and retail shops is quite advanced.
The things that really caught my attention though are these:
One, I don't remember seeing a policeman until about the third day.
Second, I didn't see any army at all...no trucks loaded with pimply faced 17 year olds anywhere. It was the third day before I even heard a siren, and that was an ambulance.
Finally, Buenos Aires is a very sophisticated town, every knob and door is polished as if it was the Four Seasons. The sidewalk may be torn up, but the doorways are immaculate. We had lots of great meals and the service in our hotel was great. There is a highly developed metro and their bus system is pretty ubiquitous. Their grand boulevards are mostly full of cabs and for the most part, the rates are pretty reasonable.
And when I say grand boulevard, I mean grand. Nueve de Julio, the main street through the financial district that goes around their own version of the Washington Monument obelisk, is 28 lanes wide...we counted them. Liberatador, is around 20.
There must be 5000 buildings that are 20 stories or taller, and I counted at least 30 that were 70 stories tall.
We stayed in the swanky part of town called Recoleta, but we walked through the Bario Norte, the Puerto Madera, the Microcenter, and through much of Palermo. Palermo is divided into four districts, and it is absolutely packed with restaurants, shops, bars, and mid level apartment towers.
Buenos Aires is way down there and it took me a while to get used to looking in the north sky for the moon. Since it was summer there, the full moon was skating across the northern horizon the same way the sun skims across the southern sky in London on a winter day. Plus, there is a whole universe of stars down there that we don't see at all.
Come to think of it... It pretty much is a different universe down there, one that we in the North tend to completely disregard. The giant Banyon trees alone are reason enough to go.
Our spaceship is a pretty amazing craft. We were really glad to have the opportunity to meet some of our fellow sailors that live on the other side of it.
Here's my little movie of New Year's Eve.
A larger , clearer version is coming after I've converted it to quick time.