Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Argentina... how I miss thee

     So I am glad to be home, back in the swing of life here again, but I can't help thinking how much good fun I've had down in Argentina.

     I truly miss the place, especially Buenos Aires. I felt it to be a second home for me, one where, given the financial backing, I would move to and live in for at least 6 months, maybe even longer. I love the live music scene there, which is absolutely bangin' right now. Tango, jazz, folklore, fusion, electronica, and  more are an every night occasion, given that there's really no reason to stay indoors on any night of the week. The nightlife is part of the city's magic or charm or whatever you'd call it. It is easy to find yourself out and about through to sunrise, especially if you're a club person, that which I am not. I did find myself out until sunrise a couple times, once soon after arriving in BsAs. after a long discussion with a couple locals, and another after, you guessed it, my first club experience, the final Friday before departure. Otherwise, 2 or 3 or 4am were not uncommon sleep times.
     The food was such a great thing that I wished I had cooked more of. I enjoyed a slew of new flavors and new foods, but now that I look back on it, it would have been much more financially practical to eat in most of the nights. I think that if I get an apartment and settle in, it would be extremely easy to cook all the time. After all, the grocer is usually only a few shops down from a baker, which is in turn not far from a butcher. I did frequent bakeries when possible, as each confection (facturas) are only 1 peso, or 26¢. And the beef! Oh my doG, super-delicious. I have now had the luxury of gorging myself on the world's best cuts of cow. After returning here to the States and eating various types of sirloin, steaks, and ground beef products, I've really noticed the lack of flavor compared with Argentine beef. Also, it's all grass-fed and dirt-cheap at the Argentine grocer, so it's basically like spending $3 on a pound of organic, top-notch beef, which in the States probably reaches $10/pound or some ridiculous price. 
It should be CHEAP to eat healthily and locally; only in America is it something that is much more a luxury than an expectation. That really pisses me off, considering how much genetically-modified and genetically-engineered and chemically-enhanced and chemically-preserved foods are for sale to the unknowing public. With "convenience" the reason for fast-food chains and WalMart and other capitalist ventures that destroy the local stores, you would think it couldn't get much better to be American. But convenience? C'mon man, I'll tell you what is convenient. Walking out of your apartment, down about 4 shops to a grocer or a fruit shop or a baker or even a café for some GOOD QUALITY, LOCALLY GROWN FOOD. That is Argentina vs. the U.S. And to a degree, this is plausible in U.S. East Coast cities such as New York or Boston or whatever else is found on that side of America, when the cities were developed without cars in mind. But as for West Coast, unless you're in the microcentro of Seattle or San Francisco, good luck. Oh, and also, keep in mind that while you can probably cook a lot more in those well-planned cities, it's also going to cost a pretty penny, especially buying organic. This is more for those of you who may be interested. Now back to the normal, unbiased writings.
So, I occasionally get to see some photos from Argentina of sights that I've seen or participated in, and it brings back the great memories. I have not thought too much about what I did during my stay, unless a song or a photo triggers it. At times I wish I could walk down the street for an empanada, but then I remember where I am. I guess there are a few Argentine cuisine restaurants in San Diego, should give those a whirl. I would also like to see some familiar faces of people I met down there, hang out in a cafe for a chat.

So HERE is my trip, outlined on a map for you to look over.

And in case that one is hard to read, here is a close-up:

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