Days 30 - 31: Buenos Aires, Argentina

Trip Start Sep 23, 2013
Trip End Ongoing

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Sunday, October 27, 2013

Wednesday 23rd October - Day 30

We'd been advised that a good way to see the city was from the saddle of a hire bike. I suggested to Kelly we take out one of the tandems the hire shop was offering, Kelly didn't like the idea and in hindsight I'm very glad she didn't. Sean and our Dutch friend Anna joined us and all four of us soon realised that like most of the large cities in South America, Buenos Aires is not cycle-friendly. Things got easier once we'd figured out that we were cycling on the wrong side of the road and we managed to find a nice route through the marshland area in the south of the city. 

Somehow we made it through some very heavy traffic to the Buenos Aires cemetery, La Recoleta. As you probably are, we were very surprised to hear that it was actually one of the cities main attractions and is home to some very famous Argentinians including Evita. But the cemeteries inhabitants were the second most impressive thing because La Recoleta contains nearly 5000 overground vaults all laid out like houses in a city and each incredibly impressive. The mausoleums vary in size and shape. Some look like, and are the size of churches, whilst others are more simplistic. Perhaps the most impressive were those elaborately clothed in marble with their owners names engraved on the doors. Eerily you can peer through the windows of some and see the coffins that sit on display! Kelly's had quite a few 'ball of shame' moments of late. Whilst in the cemetery surrounded by enormous memorials she pointed at a small tombstone in the middle of the street and said 'this one's not very impressive'. I told her to look on the other side where a tap stuck out allowing tourists to replenish their water supplies. So much shame! 

Thursday 24th October - Day 31

A little groggy from the wine we'd had last night in celebration of having survived our first month on the continent, we jumped on a bus to BA's infamous La Boca district. Here, for reasons we're not completely sure of, the houses are all painted bright colours and have street artists and tango dancers performing in the street. The spot is a natural tourist trap and sure enough straight away we were greeted by all sorts of traders including one chap offering a photo with 'Diego'. It turned out that for 5 pesos you could have a photo with an overweight lookalike of Maradona in full Argentina football kit! 

In the afternoon, Kelly and Anna went to check out a weekly protest held on Plaza de Mayo by the mothers of children lost (although suspected to have been abducted by the Argentina government) during Argentina's 'Dirty War'. 

We ended the day on the rooftop terrace of the hostel along with about 25 other guests having a BBQ. We were impressed by the BBQs we had in Brazil but this was on another level. Steaks two inches thick and so wide that they'd easily cover most of a large gas BBQ in the UK were chopped up and served. A 20 strong group game of 'Donkey' or 'Spoons' followed before being prematurely ended by a hostel worker who'd had complaints of noise. We returned to the bar and danced around until the early hours before hitting the sack! 

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