Category Archives: Buenos Aires

Mendoza to Buenos Aires -on the fancy bus

Normally a 13 hour overnight bus ride would fill me with dread. But in Argentina it’s something to look forward to, especially if you go first class.

A first class ticket on the bus line Cata gets you a  big seat, foot rest,  blanket, pillow, newspaper,  curtains to section off your seat and a personal tv.  You also get your own personal garbage bag which doesn’t sound like much unless your husband has a cold and is going through a lot of tissues.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Soon after the bus started out we got served this sandwhich with either water or coke. My first thought was, “Nice, but this is not going to hold me for 13 hours.”

Ham item #1

It turns out this was just the appetizer.  The second thing we were served was this plate of assorted mini ham sandwiches.

Ham items #2-#5. Guess what the empanada was filled with.... ham.

This course came with it’s own mini bottle of wine.

not bad for bus wine

Then came the main course,  breaded meat, potatoes all covered in ham.  It looks weird, but was strangely delicious.

Ham item #6 - ham covered meat and potatoes

We had the choice of coffee, tea, water or champagne with dessert.  It was so tempting to get champagne because when do you ever have the chance to drink champagne on a bus? But, I went with water.   I wasn’t sure how champagne would taste with flan.

bus flan - delicious

Then it was movie time. We had the choice between two different movies, both in English with Spanish subtitles.  Once the movie was over everyone pulled their curtains around their seats, lowered their seats back and put up their foot rests. The seat turned into a fully horizontal bed.

The best part besides the fully reclining seat, wine, and garbarge bag was that for the entire night the rest of the bus, all 18 other passengers were silent. No cell phones, talking, kids crying, nothing. Just pure silence.   We both actually got a pretty good night’s sleep considering we were on a bus.

The next morning we were served orange juice, coffee, and a plate of assorted cookies, no ham.    If we weren’t leaving Argentina tomorrow I’d take a few more buses. It was that much fun.  But, then again I do amuse easily.

 

 

 

 

Eating an Entire Cow (not in one sitting) part 5

We spent our last night in Buenos Aires at the same restaurant we went to the first night.   Here’s what we’ve learned in a month in Buenos Aires.

  • 10:30 is a good time to go out for dinner.  Midnight is not.  They were done for the night, but still seated us.

  • Our Spanish still needs work.  We ordered 3 different steaks. When they came one turned out to be chicken.

  • Steaks taste a lot better than organs (at least the one organ I’ve tried so far).  We got a flank and skirt steak. Both were really good.
  • They don’t call it skirt steak here. Jeff tried to buy a “lomo de falda” at a butcher the next day which made the butcher laugh.
  • Pictures of gauchos holding giant knives should not scare you.

  • You need to use caution when salting.  Salt shakers run really fast here.
  • Dulce de leche ice cream rocks

Tango Show in Buenos Aires- so not our thing

There are several ways for tourists to see tango in Buenos Aires.

1. on the street in San Telmo and La Boca –  We did this and it left us wanting more.

2. Milongas – the real deal tango bars – We didn’t go to one of these and so wish we had.

3. Tourist tango shows – We went to one of these and kind of wish we hadn’t.

The one we choose was highly recommended by the guidebooks and on Trip Advisor.   We got there, were seated and immediately brought bottled water, an emapanada and red wine.  The tickets were expensive by Buenos Aires standards, but with these extra it seemed like a great deal.

The show started. The dancing and singing were good, but it reminded me of the Donny and Marie show with singers, lavish dance numbers, and a Carlos Gardel impersonator. It lacked the passion and intensity you can see on Dancing with the Stars.

We weren’t allowed to videotape but could take photos without the flash.

The show was boring except for one sexy really good dance.  Unfortunately, it was at this moment they brought us the bill. Turns out the water, wine and empanada weren’t free .  Jeff signed the bill as quickly as he could. He would have signed anything to get them to leave and let him watch the one good dance of the night.

The people next to Jeff were singing along to every song, so I think it was a good show, just not our thing.  When it was over and the lights came on, I chugged ever last drop of wine and stuffed Jeff’s left over empanada into my mouth.  Since we had paid for it, I wasn’t about to let them go to waste.

So it turns out even someone that loves all things touristy, doesn’t really like tourist tango shows. But, you can’t love everything.    Although I did absolutely love the street named after Carlos Gardel and the statue.

Next time we’re in Buenos Aires we’ll try a milonga.

Recoleta Cemetery – Evita’s tomb

not Evita's tomb

After almost a month in Buenos Aires we finally mastered the local bus system.  We caught the correct bus going the correct way and got to the Recoleta cemetery in 5 minutes.

This cemetery is as beautiful as the other one we visited. There are amazing tombs with incredible statues.   This one, however, is smack dab in the middle of the Recoleta neighborhood, so it’s surrounded by tall, modern buildings.

not Evita's tomb


The entire cemetery is interesting, but the most famous person buried there, at least for us American tourists, is Evita Peron.    We wandered around in the searing heat looking for her tomb.  I assumed it would be grand, with giant statues and overflowing with flowers and admirers.  Turns out her tomb is quite simple. Her family’s crypt is in the middle of a long row or other tombs.  The flowers and smattering of other tourists were the things that kept us from walking right by.

Eva Durante Peron's tomb

Afterward, we stopped for coffee and alfajores (sandwich cookie filled with dulce de leche).  While Evita’s tomb was smaller than I expected, the coffee and dulce de leche lived up to expectations.

La Boca – tourist vs traveler

Jeff and I are very different kind of travelers.  I am a full blown tourist.  Jeff is a true traveler.   This difference isn’t too apparent until we go to something touristy.

La Boca is such a place.  La Boca is a neighborhood in Buenos Aires that is rich in history. Tango started in this barrio in the bordellos in the 1800’s.    The area is still “rough” according to the guidebooks, but a section of the neighborhood has been turned into a tourist destination.  There are brightly colored buildings, street vendors, outdoor restaurants with continuous tango shows, and artistic statues of people. Due to the warnings that the area around the tourist section was dangerous, we decided to take a tourist bus there instead of try our luck with the local buses.


This chart shows the difference in our travel styles when faced with different situations.

Jeff on a tourist bus.
Sheryl on a tourist bus.
Jeff and artistic people statues.
Sheryl with artistic people statues.

I don’t know if one travel style is better than the other, but I do know one of us had a hell of a lot more fun that day.