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Published: July 15th 2016
Today my friend Isa gave me a tour of Buenos Aires from a local's prespective, and what a day it was. We walked and walked and walked and walked.
We started with coffee and a cheese scone in Olivios, I walked 8 blocks from the hostel to meet him, much to the concern of my daughter who is convinced I would get lost, mugged, or who knows what else. This place roast their own beans above the premises, serious coffee makers, excellent coffee.
Jumping on the subway was the next adventure to take us to Once, a Jewish suburb to see Isa's partner's artists studio. The subway was very crowded, not quite Japanese or Chinese standards but close to this, almost cheek to cheek with people both ends! So 2 train lines, up and down stairs, all underground with the newest line to Once (say it on- say) The subway area is full of Bolivian people who have set up market stalls along the footpaths, hold on to your belongings some shady characters are also around this area.
Next into the city and to watch Isa rehearse for an opera he is in, 3 hours of sitting quietly
and listening to the ever present Spanish language. I managed to make out what it was about and a little of the directors communication to the cast.
Into the city and walking past the Congresso de la Nacion which is the parliament house building, a magnificent European style.
Lunch was at Pizza Guerrin which is the place to eat pizza when in BA. One of the oldest places around, serving pizza since 1935, close to the theatres and featuring a wall of the famous people who come there. They have a standing area in the front for the workers to gobble and go.
Past the Teatro Colon which is where we went later in the day to a concert. This is the main opera house in Argentina, built in 1908 and ranked the third best in the world.
More walking took us past the obelisk in the Plaza Republic, erected in 1936 to commemorate the fourth centenary of foundations of the first city.
The past Cabildo which is the big building in which the 1810 declaration of independence from Spain was signed. A very historic place with all school children knowing its history, drawing it
and making models of it. Close by is Casa Rosada, the presidential working palace.
Then coffee in San Telmo one of the oldest districts in BA, streets are cobbled, architecture is European and the coffee delicious. Seemingly hundreds of Catholic churches dot BA, we wandered into one Santa Domingo for a look at the lush interior.
WE walked along the revitalised pier area housing a Catholic university, numerous restaurants, an important ship and a funky looking bridge. Our route took us past the re-purposed Post office building which is now a cultural centre. A wonderful old building brought back to life by the previous government with performance spaces, art works and the original qualities of the building preserved.
More walking to take us back to Teatro Colon via the inner city walkways and the money touts, for a free 5pm concert featuring the training orchestra, comprising of young people on paid scholarships. A full orchestra, so professional in its standard with a concert featuring works by various composers such as Saint-Saens, Handel and Offenbach with soloists for arias and a brilliant cello soloist for one work.
Then a bus back to La Plata, bus to the
house, soup and time to blog.
What a day and a big thanks to my guide Isaias who knows his city really well.
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