I love Buenos Aires but they can be just a little ‘behind the times’.
Once in awhile, I walk into an office building and I feel like I am in the 80’s or late 90’s. This country doesn’t have enough money to update and they are majorly lacking in the technology department. It is a sad situation for a seemingly 'cosmopolitan' city. This seems to affect other areas too.
One of them is music.
The Argentines love music, especially English music. Thanks to the internet, there are some very well informed music lovers here in Buenos Aires. There isn’t the variety of live music that we are blessed with in Chicago. But you can easily find good live Acoustic Guitar, Jazz or Tango. I am coming to the conclusion that the problem is lack of venue, not musicians and not bands. There is always fantastic music playing on the streets.
What Argentina wins hands down with are the clubs. Going dancing in a club in the best entertainment you can consistently find any day of the week but especially the weekends. It actually reminds me of Vegas.
The Argentines are capable of an extremely impressive night out of dancing. The clubs are open till 6am-8am. When we went to a smaller town, it was 9am-10am. Crazy! But you must like the following songs.
You know you want me, Pitball
Te amo, Makano
Poker face, Lady Gaga
I got a feeling, Black Eye Peas
When love takes over, Kelly Rowland.
If you live here, you are well aware that these songs are everywhere, clubs, stores, restaurants…. Since, I arrived 4 months ago and I don’t know when it will end.
If I am missing one please list it in the comments. Thank you.
at 11:18 AM
If you are looking for a place to go on a Monday night, check out La Bomba de Tiempo (7pm-11pm) at Konex (http://www.ciudadculturalkonex.org/web/index.php) Located on Sarmiento 3131 in the Balvanera neighborhood or what the locals call ‘Once’.
La Bomba de Tiempo is a very energetic drum line with guest singers. http://labombadetiempo.blogspot.com/
When you arrive try to find the end of a long line and start waiting (it goes fast). Outside there are people selling beer and there was someone selling Mexican Burritos. Also, tons of people passing out flyers. It is wild!
For a moment, I felt like I was walking into Bonnaroo Music festival. Then I realized this is kind of a ‘hippie thing’. It felt like a drum circle event that would take place in the West of the States.
After they rush you inside, you pay 20 pesos and it opens up to a huge atrium. They had video screens in different places and I could hear the music. People everywhere.
As we got closer to the musicians, I noticed a huge room jam packed with people and a stage of drummers. On the sides there were groups of people dancing but mostly people were just grooving to the beat.
It got a little hot inside, so after a while; my friends and I went outside to the atrium area and just hung out with people.
Great place to meet travelers and locals too. Overall a great experience.
at 11:09 PM
(Church of Guadalupe: pictured above)
Religion is a funny thing here in Buenos Aires. Many people pass the church and sign the cross. Some people do it very subtlety. All day long, there are people coming in and out the churches. I haven’t been to Spain or Italy but I would think that this would be the same. But I wonder if the general beliefs are similar?
When I ask people about the subject, most of the time, I get a response of overall distrust in church, the Roman Church. They don’t agree with the money that is flowing into the church but they do believe in God. They always say, God can be found in your home, without giving money and without the church.
They are lucky here because they have a very strong sense of family, friends and community. Church isn’t there only means to a community in Argentina. They create their own communities and nurture them. The church influence may be different in smaller towns. I don't know.
There are certainly many people who do not believe in God and still create these strong bonds with friends and family.
In the U.S. the only reason that I would ever go to church would be to have a sense of community.
My personal believes are not affected by a structure and with this, here, I seem to fit in just fine. In Buenos Aires, I have a sense of community that I have always wanted, without church.
at 3:25 PM
In Argentina, for breakfast we have coffee with medialunas or toast. Most restaurants offer a ‘desayuna special’ which turns out to be less money. Many times the ‘special’ also comes with fresh orange juice.
They also have facturas, these are almost like a coffee cake or pastry/streusel category but totally different. They are many times covered with a frosting or nut. They also can come with a fruit topping, apple or strawberry. My favorites are the ones with a custard cream filling.
These are not like donuts or pastries because these are all breads, sweet breads.
You can find medialunas that are not that sweet but you also find some that are glazed with sugar. I like my medialunas heated in the oven or you can have them at room temperature. They are like croissants.
The items that I took pictures of above are from my favorite place Bell Aria.
There are several locations.http://www.bell-aria.com.ar/inicio.html
The website does work but won't LINK.....just paste and copy for locations.
at 3:43 PM
In Buenos Aires, we need a key to open every door from the inside. There are very few homes with a buzzer to let someone in. So when you exit the building, we bring our keys. Any time we have a visitor or delivery man, we use our keys. And many places are gated.
There is a problem here with poverty, a major one. Families live on the streets, fully equipped with mattresses and kitchens. With drugs so prevalent in the street community. There are disturbing crimes.
Over the last 10 years the AR peso went from being equal to the dollar to being 1/3 of what the dollar is worth. From what I have come to understand is that people my age and even younger remember a time when life was much safer. Children used to play on the streets and walk to school less than 20 years ago. It was a grand place to live.
Such a drastic change has brought a lot of confusion. Such poverty has brought desperation and such desperation has brought violence.
When I ask people,“ how do you think this problem could be solved?” They haven’t got a clue. There are some churches that help with food and volunteer organizations that help with education or shelter. But the government is practically ignoring the problem.
Now, the outcome is that the lock and security business is one of the largest industries in Buenos Aires.
at 10:21 AM
The last couple of weeks have been difficult due to a number of obstacles that I have run into here. Rather than bore you with the trials and tribulations of the last two weeks, I will just say that things are looking brighter.
I am now living in a new home with a very nice young woman from here. For now I can see clearly now, the rain has gone…….
at 2:53 PM