Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Tuesday, June 9, 2015: Buenos Aires

To begin the day we used a taxi to get to the La Boca area – this is the small area where BsAS was first settled in the location of the port, and where Tango was born.  It is now a tourist trap, artist haven, and hippy area!  This area is known for its colorful buildings.  Tourists were just arriving this morning when we were there and the shops/coffee shops were just opening. There are tango couples in almost every shop, with tango music over the loud speakers.  It was an interesting area, but we did not linger very long. 
La Boca - Multicolored Buildings

We took another taxi to the Park Lezama. This tree-lined park, designed in the 1860’s, is on a small hill – very nice, and we understand that on Sunday’s they have a wonderful outdoor market.  It is a community gathering location for concerts etc.

Russian Orthodox Church near Parque Lezama

Parque Lezama

Monument to Pedro de Mendoza - First Settler to Buenos Aires, 1536

House of the Park Designer - Jose Lezama 

Water Fountain on the edge of the Park
Today there was a continuation of the Union marches and protest from yesterday.  We understand the subway is not running, we saw no buses running, and when we went to the wonderful Colon Theater it was also closed.  We understand they are marching for more wages. Apparently the trash collectors are also on strike as the trash is piling up around the dumpsters. Each block has at least two covered dumpsters where businesses & residents can put their trash. Today these dumpsters are full and running over.  Then too, you can imagine the street dogs and the fun they are having in the trash laying on the street – by midafternoon today it was beginning to look horrible.

We also understand it is affecting air travel today – we hope they are all back at work tomorrow but there may be issues with the right planes in the right locations.  I guess we will see what happens tomorrow as we are planning to fly to Asuncion, Paraguay in the afternoon. 

The Buenos Aires International airport is 45min - 1 hour from our hotel by taxi.  There is no good public transportation to the International airport.  When we arrived in BsAs we were on a domestic flight, thus flew into an airport that is just a 20 minute taxi ride from our hotel – Howard Johnson.

Ornate Building on Florida Street

Door to the Building
This morning after visiting areas in La Boca, we used a taxi to go back to the main downtown area where we began walking again, stopping for coffee and a bite to eat - (always finding a toilet!!).  There are so many cute coffee shops along the way where you can also get pizza or a sandwich. 

There are up-market shops with all sorts of things!  We stopped again at another upmarket 3 level shopping mall, but did not leave any money there!!

Neighborhood Grocier

Bike Lane along the Street
We have been hitting the pavement very hard these last few days and we are becoming exhausted.  A good nap this afternoon was wonderful before we go out tonight. 
Our Mt Pleasant Connection in Buenos Aires
Tonight we had dinner with a gal who was a former student of Cal’s in Mt Pleasant during the early 2000’s.  She met her Argentinian husband while in BsAs during her study abroad semester. She now lives and works here in BsAs.  It was great to catch up with her at a great restaurant she selected.

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