Sunday, February 12, 2012

Sunday musings

Hard to believe that the vacation is half done already. The two weeks have flown by.
We took a cab from our flat in Recoleta to the Buenos Aires Rose Gardens in Polermo. For a 1/2 hour ride it cost 40 pesos or $10.00 Canadian -quite the deal. And I have to tell you that if you have heard any stories about the way cab drivers navigate here, they are all true. Zipping in and out of non existent gaps in the traffic – it made the old heart flutter a couple of times.

After that we walked about a kilometer to the Japanese Gardens and what an oasis of serenity it was.

Now, knowing a little more of the city, I was able to instruct the cab to a return destination that cost half as much as the ride out. Even old farts like I can learn a few tricks.
I should give a shout out to KHK in British Columbia, Canada because I thought of him when we visited the grave of Eva Peron – she would have made a good German he would say!

Food- oh my, we decided that even though the flat has a kitchen, that this time while on vacation that we would only have breakfast at home and eat supper out every night. What a wonderful plan. What a mistake – it will take months for my ever expanding waistline to contract back to normal I am afraid to say. Steak, steak and even more steak – this country really has the best steak in the world and every place where I have had one, I have never been disappointed.
And please do not get me started on the desserts- take a look at the torte I had Saturday – truly mouth watering and full of goodness and calories!

Today, Sunday, we are off to San Telmo to the Craft Market and that is where deals are to be found on nifty items – I am a little dubious of this, for if this market is like the one here in Recoleta, all items will be the same price, same design and same manufacture. But hey, this is the case at any market in a large city in the world. I think the true bargains are in small town markets instead.
Back to the real world. Somehow the struggles of the rest of the world seem distant here in Argentina. There is more concern over the status of the Malvina Islands (Falkland) than over the middle east it seems. And the story in Syria just seems to get worse and worse. All the pious rhetoric of the world, led by the American President Obama does not hide the fact that nothing is being done. Why? Maybe because the country is a big client of Russia and China perhaps?
Speaking of Russia, it was interesting to hear from Mr. Gorbachev again. It seems that be believes that Mr. Putin has exhausted his credibility with the Russian people and should remove himself from the next round of elections.
In the Maldives the president resigned and then a few days later said he was actually forced out by a coup – say what? This story will bear watching.
And in Greece – the sad saga continues as the country continues to lurch towards a probable default and bankruptcy. You look at the reasons for the drama and there are many. People blame the unions for being greedy and overpaid, they blame the size of the civil service, they blame the costs of pensions and social programs. Yet, in all this, how come no blame has been assigned to those in power that signed off on all these expensive drains on the economy? How come they are not punished as are the poor, the retired and the minimum wage earner? No jail for them, no cash penalties – nothing. Seems a bit unfair doesn't it?
Lastly, I have to comment on the weather here in Buenos Aires compared to that in Europe. Here we have had nearly every day at plus 30 range -even up to 42 one day, nice light breezes and only a couple of nights where it rained like there was no tomorrow. But what the heck is going on in Europe these days? Snow, ice and bitterly cold days - it almost seems like Canada in the winter. Yet this year Canada, at least in Saskatchewan, is having a wonderful winter with only a few very cold days and very little snow. Strange times indeed.
Anyway, that is it for a short column, time to head to the market!
Take care out there,

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