Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Week Eight Daily Journal

Friday, November 19
Buenos Aires, Argentina

I know, it looks like we could be anywhere.
But we're at La Cocina Discreta.
The day of buses!  This morning we went to the Indian embassy (via local bus) and it was open - woo!  We sat and waited and then sat some more.  Around noon we started getting nervous- the embassy hours are 10:30-12:30 and 2:30-4:30 - but it turned out that the visa guy was going to work through lunch.  Finally he was ready for us, the last people he would see before his break, at 1:30.  We had a long chat (did I mention that Dave was dying of hunger at this point), got our visas and busted out of there!  We had lunch at Dadá, which Sarah recommended to us, which was pretty good (steak for D, salad for J).  Then we walked to the Nikon store and learned that the camera would he ready next week -yay!  Our next stop was at Ateneo, an old grand theater that has been repurposed as a bookstore.  It was pretty cool (see post Not Your Neighborhood Barnes & Nobles).  We successfully took the local bus back home.  For dinner we went (by bus!) to La Cocina Discreta, a puerto cerrado (closed door restaurant) located in a private home.  We had heard that the communal seating and informal atmosphere of this type of restaurant was a great place to meet new people.  Unfortunately, the guests that night were us and a party of 7 Argentines.  So, no new friends, although we did enjoy the 3 course dinner: caesar salad/mushroom tart, chicken tandoori/lomo in a coffee based sauce, semi freddo with fruit.

Saturday, November 20
Buenos Aires, Argentina

There was an Alice-in-Wonderland
sort of look to the restaurant
We spent the morning doing trip planning at Quimbobo, which really makes a great breakfast.  We spent the rest of the day in the park (or El Bosque (the forest) as they call it), which was really nice (see post El Bosque).  That night we splurged and went to dinner at El Bistro, the restaurant in the Phillipe Starck- designed Faena Hotel.  The hotel and restaurant were very cool and the dinner was for the most part absolutely delicious.  We told them it was Dave's birthday and got an extra free dessert.  We went to the pool bar after (very Miami Beach) and lounged on the pool chairs, although we decided to pass on the 80 peso ($20) drinks (also very Miami Beach!)

Sunday, November 21
Buenos Aires, Argentina

Today we went to the Mataderos Feria (fair) located on the edge of the city.  It took us almost an hour to get there on the (hot, crowded, nauseating) bus (but cost only $0.30 each!). This was a traditional fair the likes of which we had seen much more up on the northern Salta region than the cosmopolitan Buenos Aires region.  There was traditional dancing, empanadas, tons of leather goods, and a horse riding competition where rides galloped down a city street, attempting to snag a small hanging ring with the tiny little pencil sized stick the carried.  Lots of fun (see post Galloping Through BA)!  By the time we made it back on the city bus we were wiped out so we relaxed until it was time to go to Casa Saltshaker, another puerto cerrado run by an American expat Dan.  This one did not disappoint, with a Moroccan-themed tasting menu with wine pairings, communal seating and an atmosphere that encouraged couples to split up and people to mingle.  We ate eggplant and white bean salads, chickpea and lentil soup, couscous with vegetables and Harissa, fish tagine and coconut cake.  Afterwards we went out with some new friends to km0, a club just a few blocks away.  A late night and fun times!

Monday, November 22
Buenos Aires, Argentina

The DJ wine wall
Each bottle is signed by its drinker!
We whiled away most of the day in the apartment, recuperating from the night before, attempting to buy various plane tickets, etc.  Eventually we ventured out to Don Julio's for dinner.  Since we hadn't really eaten all day we went early, around 7:30, and had bar far our worst meal there so far.

Tuesday, November 23
Buenos Aires, Argentina

Excited for steak
This morning we found our new favorite breakfast spot, a cafe just a block and a half away.   We enjoyed our coffees, medialunas and fruit salad while we waited for the Meltzers to land.  When they finally got in (their flight was delayed) we headed over to La Cabrera for the traditional (at least for us) welcome lunch - delicious.  In the afternoon we walked around the neighborhood and had a coffee at Quimbobo.  Later we went to dinner at the neighborhood joint we had been wanting to try.  It was Spanish food and it was ok, so we had to salvage the night with ice cream from la esquina de helado (we went to the one where they wear jaunty red caps and make the delicious chocolate almond flavor).

Wednesday, November 24
Buenos Aires, Argentina

Praying for a perfect photo in a BA church
After breakfast at the Bobo we headed downtown for a walking tour with Buenos Aires Walking Tour.  We started on Florida Street and stayed mostly in Retiro and Recoleta.  It was really interesting and we learned a lot about the older history of the city.  We broke for lunch (we went to Sirup Folie) and then rejoined the tour guide for the afternoon tour of Recoleta Cemetery.  We heard some interesting stories about the people buried there and then left the cemetery for some other sights like the Eva Peron memorial.  When the tour ended we went back to Casa Saltshaker to pick up the sweater I had left there the other night and then walked to El Ateco bookstore and the Nikon store.  Fatty D is fixed!  He was just dirty!  Woo!  We walked down Avenida Santa Fe for a while and stopped at Volta for ice cream and then walked some more before taking a taxi back to Palermo and hunting for a hole in the wall empanada joint.  Later, for dinner, we tried to go to Osaka but couldn't get in, and ended up at Miranda where we had some good steak.  We tried to meet some friends but the bar was closed.

Thursday, November 24
Buenos Aires, Argentina & Colonia, Uruguay

At least the lighthouse was open!
We headed out bright and early to catch the 8:45 fast shuttle to Colonia de Sacremento, Uruguay, arriving in the third country of the GT at - well, we weren't sure.  It took us a while to get a straight answer as to whether Colonia was the same time zone or an hour ahead of BA.  After checking into the hotel and having lunch we attempted to hit the many small museums for which Colonia is known... only to discover that the museums were all on some sort of strike!  We spent the day walking around, relaxing by the pool, and having our thanksgiving dinner at La Florida - delicious.

1 comment:

  1. What do you have against Miami Beach?!? I mean, you had your Thanksgiving feast at La Florida and didn't even invite us... what gives?

    Have the best time in Africa, wish we were there, and keep up the amazing pictures and steak eating!


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