16 March 2010

Buenos Aires

Everybody loves Buenos Aires. People like to say that it is the "most European city" in South America. It is complete with wide tree-lined streets, numerous parks and plazas, and tons of theaters. There is well-developed cafe culture (which is apparently a good thing) and world-famous cuisine. Museums, interesting barrios (neighborhoods), top-notch futbol teams, cathedrals, gardens . . . Buenos Aires has it all.

We, on the other hand, had only five days. We also were mainly interested in two things: sampling the country's best vegetarian food and making a new friend. We figured we'd city the rest of the city along the way to accomplishing those two goals.

We had the extremely good fortune of staying with Ludo, who is cousin to my Italian friend Piero. (Fun Fact: One fourth of Argentineans have Italian blood.) Ludo treated us like family. He made every effort to make our time in BA more enjoyable and educational. He even helped us with our Spanish. Between Ludo and his girlfriend Anna, we were given a very honest view of Buenos Aires. This blog, in essence, is an ode to our new friend, and his city as seen through our eyes.

Our typical day was: wake, running tour, eat as much as possible at a vegetarian buffet ($6-8!), afternoon tour or nap, then an evening event.




                           EVENING FUN

Ludo took us to an outdoor concert. We brought food donations to help the victims of Chile's earthquake. When we returned home, he bought us the best empanadas in the city.

I wanted to see a futbol game. Ludo is a River fan even though they have not been doing well lately. Not only did Ludo take me to a game, but he also made sure that our team won. Go River! Die Boca! That's pretty much the lyrics to all of the River songs.

Kristin and I wanted to go to a real Tango dance. Ludo called up his friend's sister, who is a professional tango dancer. Immediately we arranged a date to go to a milonga together the next day. The tango you see in the movies is nothing like the tango that people actually dance. And the music is quite different too. We also learned that the old people are really good dancers but the middle-aged people are bad because the tango was forbidden for several decades. Young people are also really good because they have studied the tango with a fresh passion.

Can anyone please help me find a way to contact Stephen Colbert? I think he'd want to know that there is a 70 foot tall advertisement for a cologne named after him.

Look, I found something Russian!

The coolest book store ever. Housed in a former theater, the ambiance just makes you feel smarter for being there. The stage has been converted to a cafe, where I drank a shitty over-priced coffee, but got free internet and listened to a live pianist.

The fun and interesting stories abound, but I'll end here.


  1. Great narrative, Danny. Did you tango?


  2. Great job on the update of your blog.