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Old 01-24-2013, 11:01 AM   #11
porkandcorn OP
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Joined: Jan 2011
Location: Portland, Oregon
Oddometer: 296
buenos aires, argentina

buenos aires is enormous. i spent the first day or two being rather overwhelmed. where and how do you begin to explore a city this size? well, much like i were in portland, oregon, i walk. you start from where you sleep, and you move in concentric circles of increasing diameter. it works.

avenida del libertador, buenos aires, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr

i first stayed at the querido b&b, run by a brit and his brazilian wife. great place, beautiful building and location.

querido b&b, villa crespo, buenos aires, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr

then i moved to the abode b&b run by a brit couple, david & zoe. the abode has parking for my bike, and an amazing rooftop patio where meals and parties are had, and where guests have 24 hours access. i like to make blog entries from up here.

abode b&b, palermo soho, buenos aires, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr

abode b&b, palermo soho, buenos aires, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr

godoy cruz and thames street, palermo soho, buenos aires, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr

david, parilla king, abode b&b, palermo soho, buenos aires, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr

today, i pulled the road cases off my bike and got lost in the chaotic traffic. there are lines in the road, but no one pays much attention to them. intersections without signals are a game of chicken at best. it's best just to go with the flow. driving here is more like dancing, or maybe chess. you feel the patterns, and you strike opportunistically when you need or want to advance. packs of motorcycles sometimes 50 strong ride the crest of the wave in front of traffic, often blasting through red lights, or at least predicting the greens. reds turn yellow, then green to give the stopped traffic a chance to get moving before opposing traffic starts. it's safest as a motorcyclist to stick with the pack. so that's what i did. i'm not pushing my luck, it would be just a matter of time before you are hit from behind, side-swiped, or something else. it requires your complete attention. and for that, i enjoyed it.

the city, at least in the neighborhoods i am in, is very safe. it's common for people to be out walking around from bar to bar well past 4am. so i've taken to walking around at night. when i walk during the day, i can sweat completely through a pair of pants or a shirt in 15 minutes. it's humid here, like summers in the midwestern u.s. that i not-so-fondly remember.

my sleep patterns have changed along with my eating patterns. people here (porteños), are opportunistic feeders and sleepers - you do these things when you can and they are available. again, i am just going with the flow. i seem to sleep 5 hours most nights, and have a 2 hour nap during the days while the heat is intense.

yesterday, i spent some time with a fellow motorcyclist (argentinian) named pablo. he's just finished riding the americas, and is planning to circumnavigate africa next year. he is a friend of another adv rider, david, i met in santiago. the motorcycle family continues to grow.

we met for lunch, but he got a call from his mechanic that sounded urgent so we went off in his sisters car to villa adelina, a neighborhood about 20 minutes northwest of the city.

we arrived at a non-descript residence, banged on the garage door, and his mechanic, dario opened up his shop. dario is a honda certified technician, and apparently quite sought after. pablo owns a honda transalp 700 with nearly 100,000 miles. he'd had an engine failure recently, and dario wanted to pull the engine apart while he was there. well, as you see, pablo's bike is dead. i don't know much about engines but i know enough to confirm this fact. one of the exhaust valve stems had separated from the cap, and caused a cataclysm of damage including a puncturing of the top of the cylinder head.

dario & pablo with dead honda transalp, buenos aires, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr

dead honda transalp, buenos aires, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr

dead honda transalp, buenos aires, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr

dead honda transalp, buenos aires, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr

i met up with pablo and some buddies for an "after-office" later last night around 9pm. why something that starts at 9pm and goes to 3am is called "after office" i still don't know. i know for a fact no one is working until 9pm around here. the club, madero rail, was located in porto madero, a neibgborhood about a 20 minute taxi ride ($60.00 pesos/$10.00 USD) to the southeast of my neighborhood, palermo soho.

at the club, i spent a few hours attempting to converse with people. i suppose the effort in español is appreciated, and i did repeat my common spiel several times - estoy montando mi moto alrededor de suramémica, etc (i'm riding my motorcycle around south america, etc, etc…) but after a while of only spanish, i seem to get very frustrated that i don't understand much of what is being said after the topic of conversation drifts into other areas. i find that after a while, my brain simply turns off and i go find a quiet corner to use my eyes.

tonight, i'm off to tango lessons at an off-the-beaten-path milonga run by a couple friends of the b&b i'm staying at. it's a place where the professional dancers go after they do their performances for the tourists in other places. i'm excited, but my tango skills are very limited. it's a challenging, and very subtle dance. i'll do my best.

avenida 9 de julio, buenos aires, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr

puente de la mujer, porto madero, buenos aires, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr

porkandcorn screwed with this post 01-25-2013 at 05:30 AM
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