Thursday, April 15, 2010

Observations on Argentina

1. Shoes
You all (should) know that I love shoes. There are a lot of shoe stores in Mendoza with beautiful leather heels, boots, etc. and I found it very difficult to pull myself away from the windows, let alone stop myself going in the shops, while we were there. Fortunately, the Argentinians are quite boring in their shoe colours and most stores only have black, white or brown shoes, beautiful as they are.

2. Change
People seem loathe to give us change in this country. And they never seem to have any! The ATMs only dispense AR$100 notes but it is very difficult to get change for them, even after you spend AR$124 on dinner at a nice restaurant, as we did our first night in Mendoza. They had to go out to get change from AR$200.

Tasca la Plaza on the Plaza de España, where we had an awesome meal (tapas) on our first night in Mendoza

3. Sweet food
The Argentinians clearly love their sweets. Mendoza is full of pastelerías (pastry shops) serving tortas, media lunas, and lots of other pastries and cakes covered in sugar, cream and/or dulce de leche, cafés serving coffee+pastry deals for breakfast, as well as many ice cream shops and vendors on the street corners selling caramel roasted nuts, sweet popcorn and lollies of all kinds. Bariloche is full of chocolate shops, as well as pastelerías and cafés. Breakfast at the hostels consists of pastries, coffee or tea, and sweet orange cordial. Someone give me bacon & eggs, or even a roll with ham & cheese! And where can I find real OJ?!
Even the red wine is sweet. Weird.

4. Crossing the street
Only if you dare! There seem to be very few pedestrian traffic lights, so you kind of have to watch the traffic lights and guess/estimate/pray-to-God as to when the right time to cross is. It's made harder by the fact that here, the red light for cars means "if you're at the line or within 5m, you can go through... actually, make that 10m... but if you're 15m away from the line, you really should stop... maybe... unless you're really in a hurry." And don't get me started on indicating, or complete lack thereof.

5. Bowling for Bariloche
You can get handguns (and sport rifles) at the camping/fishing store. Enough said.

1 comment:

  1. aaww... following this blog is going to give me itchy feet again! Enjoy guys! Stay safe, lets not see you in the news cause you were smuggling nose candy around the place. :)