Christopher Pratt (cpratt) wrote,
Christopher Pratt
cpratt

I remember



Somewhere, someone singing Kiss Me in flawless English on the subway [not the Stephen Tin Tin Duffy version, mind you]

Little girls running through the train, setting small items for sale on the knees of everyone sitting down

A man trying to sell thread for 1 peso on the train to Tigre

A restaurant called Te mataré, Ramirez ["I'm going to kill you, Ramirez"] in San Ysidro

The proprietor of the Argentine rugby museum, whose sister lives in Seattle, apologizing that their only American item was a fifteen-year old issue of Rugby magazine, and showing us a Soviet tracksuit instead

Finally finding a Los Tetas CD, and noticing that it was recorded in Monterrey, NL

Getting a free votive candle with purchase of Malbec shampoo for thinning hair in the shopping mall

Endless numbers of pharmacy visits. Vocabulary: paracetamol, pseudoefedrina chlorhidratico, Bayaspirina, antitussivo

The first bit of tapa de cuadril at Cabaña Las Lilas

Being the only guests in a fancy downtown wine bar for two hours on a Saturday night

Suddenly realizing that shopping for books in Buenos Aires is a lot like shopping for books in East Berlin: no one has the same inventory, you're not guaranteed you're buying the most recent edition, and if you see something interesting you'd better buy it because you'll never see it again

Coming to the conclusion that, unlike Chile, there are virtually no weird consumer products in Argentina

Seeing quince paste and pumpkin jam for sale in a supermarket, but not buying them as we had a 20kg baggage restriction on the flight from Mendoza

For the first and last time, spending 14 hours on a bus. Even with a lie-flat leather-upholstered bed, it's no fun if you're running a fever and are at least 20cm taller than the bed you're lying on

Having dinner with three Argentine bears in Palermo, laughing and talking and somehow getting past the cultural and language difficulties

Ice cream: turroncino, and lots of other unusual flavors, all better than the best I've ever had

Watching the latest Harry Potter movie with a huge crowd at 2 pm on a Monday in the fanciest movie theater I've ever seen, for US$2.50

Everywhere, graceful buildings from the 19th century sadly modernized by the unfeeling use of concrete in the 1960s

The taxi driver who took us to the wrong museum, and how the wrong museum was much better than the one I really had meant to go to

The uselessness of the Malba: just like SF MOMA, a fancy, expensive building without any interesting art inside

Quickly realizing that although the dollar was worth a lot of money, it still doesn't make sense to buy things you don't really want or need [although I still would have liked to have bought that pre-Columbian replica thingy, I still have no use for it]

In ten days, only being directly panhandled for money one time [at the bus station, exiting the taxi]

Snobbishly wondering why the Argentine national cuisine seemed so poor [steak, steak, and more steak - I kept longing for Chilean cooking, or for Mexican food]

At the airport, the elegantly dressed woman who walked past, stopped, and projectile vomited across the marble floor

Shortly thereafter, the Chilean surfer who dragged his surfboard case through the lake of vomit without noticing

The British couple who, upon landing in Mendoza, couldn't find an open tourist information office or a map of the wineries in the area, and who were profoundly disappointed to find it was nothing like Sonoma

The two Argentine women who shared our reserve tasting at Bodega Norton with us, and how wonderful and gracious they were

Dan sitting at a table under the sun, being attended to by a handsome, young, goateed physician and a nurse, his eyelid hugely swollen

Me, lounging in the pool nearby, knowing I'd be back at home in the snow 48 hours later

 
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