Thursday, December 16, 2010

Buenos Aires

We have spent only one week in the city, but so many things happened to us that it feels like we’ve been here for much longer.
Maxi and his family received us with open arms. It will not be far from reality to say that his parents, Jorge and Claudia, took us in as their own kids. They invited us to stay with them for as long we need!
The very night that we showed up, Maxi took us out to a dance. He participates in a community dancing group. They dance Murga, a traditional Buenos Aires dance with roots in Brazilian culture. The group danced out in the park for the community for a few hours and then we all piled up in the back of a pick-up and went to a kindergarten graduation party. The group was asked to dance for the kids. We watched them dance there too and walked home with our friend way past midnight.The next day Maxi took us out to a rock concert, in a pleasant art center called ¨Ana Pavlova¨. The evening felt very much like the ones we passed at ¨Shizo¨ in Montreal – small space, about 50 listeners and young musicians playing good music until late.
Before coming to the big Babylon, we contacted a few CS hosts, not expecting to stay with Maxi for a long time. Although we already had a place to stay, we still wanted to meet the good-hearted people who accepted our requests. The first on our list were Julieta and Pablo, a couple living in a huge artistic apartment in one of the neighbourhoods of the city. Their home amazed us: every single square foot of surface in the house had not gone without loving and creative attention of the couple: colourfully painted trim, lots of paintings on the walls (both by Julieta and Pablo), and plants, lots of healthy growing plants… We accidentally stayed overnight, for the conversation and the company emanated a very good vibration.
We left their house early in the morning, heading to meet another CS person: Mago Daniel. He is a professional entertainer, he works as a clown, magician and a juggler, depending on the occasion. He had a shaven head, and a goatee. He met us in his house a bit before noon. We were sitting in his impossibly dirty kitchen with cockroaches running all over the place. ¨Hi, I am Mago Blanco Planetario¨, he said, sat down at the table and had a vegan breakfast while lecturing us on the benefits of a vegan diet. He poured us a cup of herbal tea sweetened with a special herb Stevia, NOT SUGAR, which is a deadly poison, according to him. George had to fish out a small cockroach out of the cup before sipping on the delicious (and healthy) brew . We spent a few more hours in the bad-vibe circus house and then navigated our way back to Maxi’s family through the crazy but well-organized metropolis which is Buenos Aires.
Maxi makes gnome-looking dolls in the sparetime. He has a good eye and the gnomes (duendes in spanish) turn out each looking very different from the other.The family is doing a little renovation in the house, so we offered them our help. ¨Can you lay a wooden floor?¨ Jorge asked us. ¨Yes,¨ we said. So, for the last two days we have turned into semi-professional floor-layers. We spill glue on the concrete and stick the exotic woods parquette down, it looks like it is turning out good so far :)


  1. I will take sugar over a cockroach in my tea any day!

  2. Ha-ha, we are on your tea-drinking team, then!