On March 4, a little before noon, I arrived in Buenos Aires EZE airport. Customs was relatively organized, straight forward, and simple. Once I acquired my luggage, I headed out. There stood Gaston waiting for me, the reverse of when he came to live with me a little more than eight years ago and I waited for him at the Amarillo airport. One thing remained the same–hugs. We hailed a cab, loaded my luggage, and headed for the hotel which his dad, Hugo, had arranged. In spite of the fact that neither of us had managed much sleep the night before (mine was sleep on a ten hour red eye flight and his was a night in the bus from Cordoba), we headed out to find some lunch and explore.
After a long walk (I have a Fitbit and we walked 35 miles in 2 1/2 days before we left Buenos Aires), we arrived here at this very modern business district on the right. The tall building in the distance is a Chinese bank.
To the left are many old warehouses which have been converted into apartment buildings, restaurants, and shops. It has become a fashionable place to live. Several of these sailing vessels floated in the water. Some could be boarded for a tour. We just strolled around and enjoyed the views, the weather.
We crossed the bridge and explored a rather exclusive area. Buenos Aries is an old city which combines the old and the new. Many of the sidewalks and streets have not changed in hundreds of years–the original cut stones remain.
We did have to laugh at our first lunch experience. Although the restaurant appeared to be quite traditional and Argentinian on the outside, the menu was mostly Tex-Mex food.
One of the longest streets in the world, this one goes from one end of the city to the other. Note the trees! Every city I visited contained an astonishing amount of trees. Except for the most narrow streets, trees lined them. Later I learned about an Argentinian saying: there are three things you must do in life, plant a tree, write a book, have a child. I feel grateful because I have done all three.
Parks, parks, and more parks–they are everywhere and people use them–children playing, dog walkers, runners exercising, people relaxing on park benches, chatting.
Hugo had given Gaston a list of some places to visit, one of which is an old area with colorful buildings, traditional dancing, e.g. tango, and lots of tourists. Many of the restaurants this time year–end of summer there–are open air, filled with people enjoying summer’s end.
We had a coffee (we drank quite a lot of coffee–for breakfast and after dinner almost every day), watched tango and traditional country dancers. Tango is a Buenos Aires dance tradition. People in other parts of the country dance the traditional dances, not tango. We watched while a woman in her 80s left her table and danced perfectly with a young man dressed in traditional clothes–everyone cheered. People there eat dinner late, 9-10 at night. One day in Buenos Aires we somehow sort of forgot lunch and were hungry so we went to this special restaurant (they have a very unique way of making a potato dish which Gaston likes) about eight. The waiters looked at us as if we were crazy. No one else arrived at the restaurant before nine and most even later. This suited me fine. I much rather eat late than early.