Greetings from Buenos Aries!
I arrived in this fabulous city yesterday after three days spent in Uruguay. From Salto we travelled down to the capital Montevideo, which is so European! The city was brimming with statues and monuments of famous political and military figures and there were little fountains and parks on pretty much every block! I spent a relaxing two days there taking in the sights and sounds and sampling the local Pilsner brew, which would have been better had South America figured out that the head of the beer does not constitute part of the drink! (this is a worrying trend I have seensince Rio.) Montevideo also has a huge working port where cargo from all over the world comes and goes. The city is situated right on the edge of the widest river in the world which looks just like the sea, but having crossed it I can assure you that it is not! I really enjoyed Montevideo but there was one element which I found distressing - the garbage horses. The poor in the city collect garbage to eat or sell on and they do so by piling as high as they can these carts which poor horses have to pull down the streets. It broke my heart to see these animals standing on the sides of roads while their owners were literally in dumpsters searching for anything they could use. I was told that Uruguay has animal rights laws, but clearly these are not as stringent nor solid as those that Lord Nelson enjoys in England.
After Monteviedo we hopped on the bus to Colonia which is a gorgeous little town steeped in history. It was one of the earliest colonial settlements in Uruguay and dates back into the seventeenth century. The streets were winding and cobbled and the street signs were all made from the most beautiful ceramic, handpainted tiles. As with all colonial towns the church was incredible and contained loads of original Spanish artefacts brought over by the Conquistadors. There were several museums in the town and I saw a replica colonial house as it would have been three hundered years ago, and it was actually pretty comfy! They also displayed original weapons used to take the region from the indigenous population. I then went over to the indegenous history museum which had a fascinating display of tools and ceremonial items. The contrast between the guns and hand crafted swords of the europeans and the flint and stone axes of the indigenous population was incredible and it made me wonder how a pretty small area of western europe and a little island just off its coast could even conceive such incredible technology while the rest of the world stuck to stone axes. After a lovely day spent soaking up the sights it was an early start and onto the ferry bound for Argentina!
We arrived in Buenos Aries yesterday afternoon and spent most of our time wandering around Florida Street, and the harbour before heading into Palermo Soho for some Biffe Delomo and good Argentinean wine! This is the last day of the tour and we are headed out toa tango show this evening which i am really looking forwards too. I still have three days in this wonderful city so I plan to take it easy and soak up as much culture as possible!
Until next time xx