Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Buenos Aires

I was only in town for 7 days because I was waiting for my Brazil Visa. If that wasn't an issue I would have left earlier because the city is a bit bland. A part of it felt like downtown LA and other parts of it felt like what you'd see in a small suburb town in the LA area.

As someone traveling through, there wasn't as much to see there that I felt was super "Argentinian" as compared to cities like Madrid and Barc. This might be because the BA is closer to LA culture. There were moments when I walking through the city when I forgot that I was in South America.

There's also so much Spanish in LA that I found that weirdly familiar when I walked down the streets full of Spanish signs, as if I had been there before.

The food was better than Spain, but as a foreigner that wasn't willing to spend a lot of money, I didn't find anything remarkable enough to write home about (I'd be talking about it now, hehe).

I liked some of the cheap sandwich milanesas and empanadas carne that I chowed down for a couple bucks. I didn't find any spicy food again. I'm starting to realize that Mexicans are the only spanish people that eat spicy food :) (jalapenos and spicy salsa)

I found out the word salsa means sauce. It doesn't mean it's necessarily spicy. As an example, salsa tomate is what you'd put over pasta.

I saw a couple of pretty buildings and some imprsessive intersections. I took pics of those to keep.

I'd never seen a city of people with more statues and monuments of one man before. General San Martin is everywhere. I saw at least 3 or 4 impressive statues of him on his horse, weilding a sword in a very dominant pose. There's a street named after him. There's a subway stop named after him. There's a plaza named after him. There's a park named after him too. Some of his statues have flower wreaths from different countries placed in front of them.

I never found out for sure but I think he's famous for defeating the Spanish and bringing Argentina to independence. There was a date in the mid 1800s in each of his statues that was probably the day they won their freedom. I guess you could consider him the Argentinian equivalent of George Washington.

In general I thought the locals were friendly. I couldn't speak Spanish so I don't know for sure. From their facial expressions and body language I felt like they enjoyed having me around, which was nice.


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