Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Impressions of Buenos Aires November 2006

Sometimes it can take a while for the lift to arrive as the locals typically press the up & down buttons regardless of which direction they wish to go. Breakfast is filling since it often means too many medialunas (pastries) with your coffee. Then you pop out for the sports paper (Ole) to confirm the days football fixtures passing the numerous dog walkers & the odd tramp.
Its morning in Buenos Aires.
Spring it is usually very pleasant , not too hot but bright, sunny & dry. The feeling of renewal, that the best part of the year is yet to come, is uplifting compared to the dark dull days back home in autumnal England.
Walk to the nearest metro station, via one of the numerous Internet cafes, queue for a ticket whilst those begging for change look on. Sometimes they have a child in tow who may have a cleft palate or other such problem.
Taking the metro is usually (apart from walking) the most cost effective, preferred & reliable travel method followed by train, bus & taxi.
Trains can depart from a variety of city stations including 3 adjacent to each other at Retiro &
overcrowding is not unusual - such that riding on the train roof is not uncommon. Expect a steady stream of pedlars to accompany any journey & its advisable to avoid sitting next to an open window passing some areas of BA (to avoid the missiles) Underinvestment is all too evident.
Buses do offer an alternative slower option bouncing along the one-way streets via a myriad of routes.
But regardless of which route is taken at journey's end is a football ground - it could be the Diego Armando Maradona stadium (Argentinos Juniors) , Isles de Malvinas stadium (All Boys) or La Bombonera (Boca)
Either way once inside you experience the passion of a city like no other.

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