An afternoon in Montevideo

Trip Start Jan 05, 2012
Trip End Jan 29, 2012

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Where I stayed
On board the Azamara Journey
What I did
Teatro Solis Montevideo
Read my review - 5/5 stars

Flag of Uruguay  ,
Saturday, January 14, 2012

We landed in Montevideo Uruguay on Saturday morning, and took a bus to the center of the city. It was morning, about 10 a.m.  We were very impressed with the city of Montevideo, very compact and clean.  The weather was perfect, about 75 degrees and clear and a cool breeze coming from the ocean.

On the bus to the city center, we got to meet and talk to one of the lecturers on the ship, Walt Cunningham.  He was the astronaut pilot on Apollo VII and he will be giving lectures on sea days.  He is a nice guy and very knowledgeable.  Melissa took pictures of me with him.   I have been getting a request from my old pay from Pratt Boulevard in Chicago, Nori Aronfeld , to include more photos of me.  So here are a few with more to come.

We walked through the center of the old town and found many vendors out on the walkway, selling many items.  I found a wonderful tee shirt and you can see the vendor who sold it in the photos below.  Further down the way, the vendors changed and became antique dealers.  More or less a flea market such as Melissa frequents back home, so she was right at home.  You can see some photos of her in her element.

Before we started on this walk, we noticed the Teatro Solis, a very small version of a classic theater such as we had seen in Buenos Aires—the Teatro Colon.   We tried to go on a tour but learned that we could only pay in Uruguan Pesos, of which we had none.  But we also learned that the tour in English was not starting for another hour or so, so we went on our way hoping to come upon an ATM or somewhere to change a few dollars.  The people at the Teatro Solis told us that no banks were open because it was Saturday.  The tee shirt vendor, however, was happy to take payment I dollars and give us pesos in exchange.  I gave him a $20 bill and he gave us more than enough pesos to cover our entry fee for the tour.   The Uruguan Peso is worth about five cents US.  The entry fee for the tour of the Teatro Solis was about $2, or 40 pesos.

While our tour was beginning, a fellow American came running up to join us and he too had no pesos.  I was able to give him the 40 pesos he needed and he gave us $2.  He is George, a retired forensic tech from Seattle.  He worked for the Washington State Police forensic department as a DNA specialist.  He is on the cruise with us and, of course, we hit it off when we learned what each of us does.

And so we went on the tour.  It was quite good.  The tour guides are all interns from college who are in the arts departments.   Ours is a film student, but an ardent arts advocate.  She did a fine job of giving us the background of arts in Uruguay and the history of the Teatro Solis.   Solis, by the way, is the name of a family that developed the Teatro in the mid 19th Century.  The Teatro was constructed then and, of course, has been renovated since, the latest completed quite recently.

During the tour a drummer and dancer singer popped out of passageways to entertain us.  He is a music student and she is a recent graduate and now professional performer.   Their performances, called Contadors (or something like that—forgive me) were delightful.  Here is a video of the performances.  


More to come.
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