Sunday, August 14, 2011

El fin de semana numero cuatro

Viernes 12 de agosto – día 26
I woke up this morning at 7 AM to sounds of thunder and rain.  Lots and lots of rain.  As it was 7 AM I rolled over and went back to sleep until a reasonable hour because let’s be honest, 7 AM is far too early to get up.  Around 9:30 I got up and it was still raining, thus I decided today would not be an ideal day to visit the zoo or the botanical gardens.  I texted Melissa and we agreed it would be better to go to La Biblioteca Nacional (National Library) instead.  We decided to meet at her house around 2 PM since the library is close to her house.  I wanted to sign up for a kayaking trip on Monday at El Tigre and registration started at 10 so I brushed my teeth and then logged onto the IFSA page to register.  At 10 I signed up and was already person 11 for 14 spots!  I’ve never been kayaking before so that should be quite an adventure…

I went downstairs and had some honey grahams with a banana and yogurt for breakfast then went back upstairs and read some of La Cautiva for class.  At 13:00 I went downstairs and made myself a sandwich for lunch and then headed out in the drizzle to the bus stop.  Normally I would have walked because Melissa's apartment isn’t too far away, but it was kind of gross out and I didn’t feel like walking.  Now for a little story…

As many of you may know I have an absolutely terrible sense of direction.  Actually, it would probably be more accurate to say I have no sense of direction (I don’t know if you can inherit a sense of direction - or lack thereof - but if you can thanks Mom).  That being said I headed out in a direction perpendicular to the way I needed.  Keep in mind that the way to Melissa’s is the exact way I walk everyday to get to the subte so I have absolutely no idea as to why I thought I needed to go the way I went.  After about 4 blocks I thought, "wait, I should have gotten to the street where the bus stop is by now… it’s 2 blocks away.”  Then I realized I had gone the wrong way so I turned and headed in the right direction.  Now, it’s a good thing I’m such a graceful person otherwise I might have tripped on the very uneven and rough sidewalk in the rain.  If I weren’t so coordinated I might have then stepped right into a hole in the sidewalk that had become an ankle deep puddle.  Ok, so maybe I did those things, because maybe I’m just a lot bit clumsy.  Ok, I definitely did those things.  Uncomfortable wet jean feeling, check.  Water squishing from my sock and shoe with every step, check.  Being the trooper that I am I continued on to the bus stop and then arrived at Melissa’s without further incident. 

We walked the 3 or so blocks from her house to the library and then headed inside.  The building itself is beautiful, very architecturally interesting.   

Once inside we had to fill out a form with our names and passport numbers to be able to enter.  The guard told us there would be a guided tour in 45 minutes but we could go and look around on our own if we wanted.  We found a comfy area with a view of the city (unfortunately it wasn’t the nicest day, but it was still a neat view) and Melissa’s copied my notes from our literature class on Thursday.  

We headed back down to the main floor at 3 to go on the guided tour.  It turns out we were the only two people there for the tour so this really nice woman gave us our own private vista guiada, which was really interesting.  She showed us the public study room where anyone can come, bring anything they want, and camp out and study to their heart’s content.  There was also a really cool  area with very fancy desks and old school chairs where you could study, but you can only bring in a notebook and a pen.  This is where you can look at the books from the library.  You aren’t allowed to check anything out but you can photocopy parts of the books.  She also showed us the newspaper/magazine area where you can find periodicals from as far back as the 1930s.  There are also free public literature lectures anyone can attend and exhibits.  Currently they have a lot of books and newspaper articles written by Borges as well as books from his private collection with his notes in the margins, which was very cool to see.

After our tour we signed a little guest book and then headed to the café del lector.  I got a café con crema y una medialuna.

I took un colectivo back to mi casa and then double checked my schedule for tomorrow.  For dinner Clarisa made pizza and for dessert we had some of the most delicious fruit ever, circuelas en almíbar (plums in syrup).  They were very tangy and very sweet at the same time, ¡que deliciosa!

After dinner Clarisa made some tea and then she went to bed as she had been working since 8 this morning.  She is a surgical nurse at a hospital here in Buenos Aires but she also works teaching (and studying) astrología en casa.
I watched a little bit of TV then showered and went to bed.

Sabado el 13 de agosto
I woke up this morning and headed downstairs to make breakfast.  I was the only one awake so I turned on the TV and found Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix was on so I watched that while I cut up an orange and a kiwi.  I mixed the fruit with some vanilla yogurt (the yogurt here is a lot runnier, only slightly thicker than milk) and made some tea.

After breakfast I read some more for my Lit class, then packed myself a lunch and headed to the subte station.  I had a class at UBA to try out called Etnolinguistica.  The fact that this class is on Saturdays makes it highly unlikely I’m actually going to take the class.  That being said I wanted to try it out on the off chance I just absolutely loved the class at thought my academic life would not be complete without it.
I got to UBA at around 12:45 to find the doors were closed and there was a sign saying the school was closed today due to elections.  There were other people standing around and none of us knew the school was going to be closed.  After waiting for a little my professor showed up, she wasn’t even aware there weren’t classes today.  Apparently they didn’t the entire day to prepare the building for the elections tomorrow (taking down political signs, maybe cleaning although I highly doubt it…).  My professor just have us basic info on the class (in the middle of the sidewalk) and then we headed on our merry way.  While I’m not all that surprised this happened because everything relating to UBA is super disorganized it was still annoying because I was on the subte for an hour to get to class then had to turn around and go back home.  This also means I have to go to the class next week to figure out if I like it or not.  Oh well.  I walked around for a bit and took some pictures.
Pretty building


I got home and ate the lunch I packed (a sandwich and some veggies) then I headed out to meet Julie and Melissa.  We went an ice cream shop/café close to my house.  Julie and Melissa got coffee but I got a cone of dulce de leche granizado (with small shavings of chocolate in it).

See the chocolate pieces?

Julie and I walked around for a little and looked at some stores, I found a dress I liked but it was $300 pesos ($75) so I didn’t buy it.  We headed home and I showered and got ready for dinner that night.

Graffiti Montage from my walk:

"John Lemon"

Melissa, Julie, Andy and I went to La Escondida, a restaurant near my house that my host mother suggested.  Andy ordered a stead, Julie ordered salmon, and Melissa ordered Chicken.  I originally intended to get a steak but then I saw salmon on the menu that sounded really good.  Our meals came with a salad bar (which was really impressive, they had a delicious orange vinaigrette dressing I really liked) and we ordered a bottle of wine to share.  
Largest piece of salmon I've ever seen

Pollo y bife de chorizo

Puree de papas

Andy enjoying his steak...

... a little too much


de Mendoza!

After our meals we were all stuffed but decided we couldn’t pass up dessert so we ordered champán con helado de límon and mousse chocolate.  Soooo good.  All together the meal was $80 pesos ($20) per person which isn’t bad considering how much we ate.  I could get used to having multi-course meals with wine and dessert for under $30 a person… if only I could find that in US.

Melissa, Me, Julie

Julie, Andy and I headed to a bar close buy for a few drinks (Melissa didn’t join us because one of her friends is in Bs As visiting family so she went to hang out with them).  We got a drink at a bar called La Honda and then decided to go to a different bar.  Unfortunately for us we forgot that there were elections the next day, so after sitting down and deciding what we wanted el masero told us we couldn’t order alcohol because it was 12:03 and they had to stop serving alcohol on election day (it’s a primary election on Sunday).  We had planned to go to a boliche (club) later in the night but we decided to go home instead.

Domingo el 14 de agosto
This morning I got out of bed around 10AM and went downstairs to have breakfast.  I made some tea and some frosted flakes with a banana.  Clarisa was in the kitchen making coffee and told me she was going to shower and then go vote.  After I finished my breakfast I headed upstairs and did some reading for my lit class.  Around 13:00 I headed to Melissa’s.  It was such a nice day out I decided to walk, which took about 40 minutes.

We decided that since it was an election day we shouldn’t try to go to any museums or anything because they would likely be closed so we went to Buenos Aires Design, a mall with tons of home interior things.  During my Trading Spaces days I would have been in complete heaven.  There were still a ton of really neat things to see though so we walked around for a while.

Blast from the past

 Afterwards  we ended up going to Plaza Francia to a feria.  There was a ton of stuff to see, jewelry, mates, clothing, leather good, basically anything you can imagine, it was there.  I saw a lot of things I liked but I didn’t end up buying anything.

Next we headed to Plaza de Las Naciones Unidas to see la floralis genérica, a giant metal statue that opens and closes with the rising and setting of the sun just like a real flower.  It was beautiful!    We crossed a bridge over Libertador to get there. 

We also saw another facultad de la UBA.

Then we were in the plaza with la floralis generica.

Usted in Bs As?? Que raro!

We were both pretty hungry so we went to a café near Melissa’s house for a bite to eat. 

Girl's room

Boy's room

I had every intention of getting a sandwich or salad until I saw “panqueques de dulce de leche” on the menu.  My life has been forever changed by this sinfully delicious dessert.

It was quite possibly the sweetest thing I ever eaten (and coming from me that's saying a lot).

Melissa got a baked good filled with ricotta, also delicious.

The little cookies shaped like estrellas that came with our meal.

After I finished my panqueques (more like crepes) I was stuffed.  My sweet tooth had definitely been satisfied.

I headed off to the bus stop to go home.
Otra facultad de la UBA

It was such a nice day and it was still light out so I walked around the neighborhood and took some pictures.

Trash everywhere

When I arrived back Clarisa was on the phone (women here are ALWAYS on the phone) so I headed upstairs to load all my pictures and write my blog.

Clarissa called me down for dinner and we had leftover (like every Sunday).  I had a soup of pasta, carrots, pumpkin, and green beans and pastel de papas.  For dessert Clarisa had made a torta with nuts which we topped with dulce de leche.  She told me she doesn’t know how I stay “flaca” with everything I eat… she sounds just like Nanny Sterner!

I’m off to bed as I have to get up uber early to go kayaking tomorrow.  I’m more than a little nervous as I’ve never gone kayaking before… it will be quite the adventure.  I’ll be sure to update tomorrow with tales from El Tigre!

Un beso,

Random Photo:

No comments:

Post a Comment