despite the unshakable sense that i was somehow betraying my brazilian allegiance, i loved loved loved buenos aires. you know, that step-off-the-plane-and-feel-at-home kind of love. i know it's supposed to be the paris of latin america, but - at least in ambiance - it reminded me of berlin; a city objectively beautiful and poetically resilient. i decided to take the omnibus public 8 from the airport to get a city tour on the cheap. a friendly airport employee took it upon himself to narrate the first 20 minutes of the bus ride (the outskirts of town): there's [insert species name] trees. there's people barbecuing by the roadside. and there are the mormons. sure enough, there we were, constructing a temple:
i got back on the bus and enlisted some local riders to signal when i should get off the bus. when they pointed me toward the national congress, adjacent to the plaza below, i knew it was pointless to resist loving this place. by the time i reached the hotel, i'd purchased a pair of much-hoped-for ankle boots, passed a series of parks and plazas, and discovered an imposing cemetery (ala new orleans).
among impressive stories and sights i encountered during my visit were the madres de plaza de mayo: a group of women who have been weekly demanding information about the "disappearance" of their children by members of the military dictatorship during the dirty wars since 1977. although there continues to be debate about how many civilians were disappeared by the argentine government between 1976-1983, current estimates are around 30,000; that's approximately 1 in every 1,000 people. at its outset, these women continuously paced in a circle (thus, circumventing anti-protesting regulations about standing in public) and risked their lives in hopes of protecting - or getting justice for - their children.
|photo courtesy of www.neeerd.com|
today, they are honored in la casa rosada's (executive palace) gallery of influential women.
truth be told, i had much more fun than sleep in buenos aires. thus, my ability to form coherent sentences is somewhat impaired right now. so i will try to sum up the rest in photos.
i saw lots of government buildings and talked about lawyer-y stuff:
|la casa rosada (executive palace)|
|the balcony form which juan and eva perón gave public speeches, overlooking plaza de armas|
and filled most of my free time with theater, music, and dance:
|el teatro colón|
|el ataneo: theater-turned-bookstore|
|la bomba de tiempo at el teatro konex|
|señor tango: kitchy, no doubt, but also really good tango|