I did indeed land in Buenos Aires this morning but without the hoped for sleep. Not sure why but I’ve never been able to sleep on a plane, I have high hopes that this trip will eventually cure me of that. Got off the plane, breezed through immigration and customs and found the cab stand. I arrived at the hotel and my room was not ready yet – no surprise, as it’s still only 9:45am. I decide to go for a run to familiarize myself with the city a bit. I hit the gym to change into my running clothes, get directions from the concierge to the city’s best park and head out into traffic.
Though the park seems close on the map, it turns out to be further away than I thought so a quick 3-4 mile run soon turns into 7-8 miles roundtrip. (It is cute that the concierge thought I could run this far – sure, I’ve run a couple of marathons but does he know that??) Eventually, I get there and it was worth the distance. Palermo Park is beautiful and even better, it’s packed with dogs enjoying some afternoon leisure time. Apparently, dogs are big here in Argentina and dog walking is a real job.
It was after noon by the time I got back to the hotel and my room was ready (and lovely, with a view of the small park near the hotel). I showered, changed and headed down to the pool restaurant for lunch after discovering it was the one place in the hotel with free wireless access. A good opportunity to upload photos and update the website. Not sure I’m even going to make it until dinner time tonight, really in need of a good 8 hours (or more). And I’ve got a full day tomorrow to take in the other sights.
Day 2 – Exploring Buenos Aires
Went to bed early last night and got a great night’s sleep so I woke up early and went for another run (this time without the concierge’s input). I wanted to see the harbor area so I headed that way. It turned out to be a great place to run (straight paths along the water) and a charming, recently revitalized area. There were restaurants, shops, and lofts. I spent the rest of the day wandering around town and checking out the Buenos Aires tourist hot spots.
My first stop was the Recoleta Cemetery, a maze of elaborate mausoleums built for Argentina’s heroic and wealthy. Eva Peron, inspiration for a Broadway musical and former wife of Argentine President Juan Peron, lies here. It was really quite beautiful for a cemetery, not at all what I expected.
Yesterday, after reading my post, an alert website reader (Mom) remarked, “the dogs are very cute Jenny, but where are all the cats?” I am happy to report that the cat population of Buenos Aires is alive and well…and living inside the cemetery! (With all the dogs in this city, can you blame them?) You’ll all be happy to know that water and food bowls abound inside so all are well taken care of.
After my visit to Recoleta, I headed over to check out BA’s biggest landmark, the obelisk. The obelisk is Buenos Aires’ most recognizable architectural landmark. It was built in 1936 in the record time of only 4 weeks to commemorate the fourth centenary of the first founding of Buenos Aires. It sits in the Plaza de la Republica, in the middle of 9 de Julio Avenue, “the world’s widest avenue.” So wide it literally takes two lights to cross it.
Another great day and now I’m off to the airport to catch the “mother of all flights” to Paris tonight. Next stop, Berlin!