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Argentina. Five photos (2)

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New York city maybe prides itself of being the city that never sleeps, a place where everything is open 24 hours a day. The subway always runs, the hot dog vendors are always running. Money is being made, the shakers and movers and all those others that measure life in accounting profits never stop.
Buenos Aires does not pride itself of that. Buenos Aires does sleep. It takes naps, in the afternoon, long and languid, the sleep of the lazy, the sleep of those that know that life is not meant to be lived in a hurry, life is not meant to be the single and simple minded pursuit of efficiency. Buenos Aires knows that if you leave your problems behind they will be there tomorrow morning, so you might as well enjoy some time to relax.
But at night Buenos Aires is wide open, with eyes wide awake and looking for something to do. Restaurants close at a decent hour, around 1 AM, which gives you time to enjoy the bottle of wine, the entrée, the main course (or courses) and of course the dessert. Buenos Aires understands that the concept of FAST FOOD is anathema, is a crime against life. If you fancy fast food you might as well be a cheetah hunting down a swift gazelle, but the idea of wolfing down your sustenance is sick and perverted to Argentinians. Small bites, take your time, let that steak leave its gorgeous taste imprinted on your gums.
At night, Buenos Aires is alive with thousands of little bars and places to enjoy life. The wide streets (Avenida 9 de Julio is the widest street in the world, literally) are not chock full of cars but there is always plenty of traffic so you can feel the pulse of the city under your feet. The subway does close at 11:00 PM, but it is a matter of logic: if you need to use the subway at that hour, you simply have no money to party. Stay home.
Buenos Aires is a city that lives its “Neighborhood Life” to the fullest. People do not go to the fancy pub or the fashionable bar. They walk to the neighborhood bar, the local pizza place, the brewery by the corner. In the heat of the Austral summer, it is nice to wear as little clothing as possible and sit down in the open air, with a few friends, and drink down sorrows, wash down your problems or, if you have none of those, share the laughs. Buenos Aires is full of little silly signs that remind you many axioms to happiness: Chocolate will not cure your sadness, but neither will an apple. Beer will not make you beautiful, but neither will water. And on and on.
Buenos Aires sleeps, later in the morning. Trying to find an open café at 6:30 starts to be difficult. But at night, Buenos Aires is alive and kicking, or rather, alive and tango-ing. The Obelisco, on one side of the 9 de Julio, is washed in bright light, a sentinel of the city. At two in the morning it is not the place to be (there are few pubs downtown) but if you are there, you are in the heart of the city. Just take one of the arteries and go have some fun.
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  1. GlennHarman's Avatar
    Duh.....It is now obvious that we will get one episode of this blog with each photo. I don't know why that wasn't obvious to me with the first one. Keep them coming. This is great fun. GH