Wrestling was certainly an experience! We knew it would be fiesty but we were surprised at the midget-tossing and the women and men fights! Our VIP front row seats assured us the best view of the ring especially when the wrestlers threw one another out of the ring and continued to fight at our feet! Emma initially was unsure that she would be able to hack two whole hours of violence until Laura, being slightly more aware that wrestling is mostly bravado, explained they were merely stamping on the floor rather than on each other's heads!
The local bolivians certainly got into the wrestling spirit and enjoyed lobbing orange peels at the contestants whilst booing. Kevin, a rugged looking American keeno, took great pleasure in enthusiastically shouting abuse at the ring and buying us drinks kitted out in a face mask and a huge grin!
Leaving Loki hostel (the rudest customer service on earth) we enjoyed our last Bolivian meal at the airport at 5am before flying the five hours to Argentina to meet up with Jamie, Daniel and Emily (Dan's girlfriend). Despite this only being a short flight we still had a stopover in Santa Cruz where we were surprised to find we had to leave the airport and re-enter in order to fly with our baggage! The drive from the airport to Milhouse, our hostel, was extremely exciting as the road surface was flat and tarmacked with lane markings and the cars had indicators - something we had forgotten about in Bolivia!
Meeting up with the gang and catching up on the last four weeks, we found a steak restaurant for dinner and enjoyed Buenos Aires' world-reknowned tender steaks (Laura ate chicken - of course!)
Buenos Aires is completely different from anywhere we have visited so far. It is not a historical city and therefore has no cultural sights as such but instead has different boroughs with various attractions. Wanting to explore the Palermo region first, we set off by a very overcrowded Metro to the Evita Museum, which explained her role and success in Argentina. After a leisurely lunch we took a horse and carriage ride around Palermo and typically Jamie noticed a billboard for the musical "Rent", with which we are all obsessed and joked about the unlikelihood of it being on!
Wanting to have a cultural evening the five of us participated in a tango class offered by the hostel. Having to perform to the entire class was slightly embarassing as the tango is a provocative and intimate dance involving leg-rubbing and seduction. Laura switched partners several times, getting a truly transnational experience! Luckily, Keisha and Tash, friends from home, were staying in the hostel too and got involved in the dancing and later played pool and had drinks with us. Being more economical, thanks to our adapting traveller mentality now we are in hostels, we cooked a dirty dinner in an old kitchen but the pizza was good!
Having been recommended by several reliable sources to Murillo street, we went in search of leather products. Emma managed to try on every jacket in every colour in every shop but still came away empty-handed unlike Dan who FINALLY after being highly indecisive came away with a new jacket! Wanting to explore another borough in the afternoon, we went to Recoleta to see the cemetery. All of us were astounded at the beauty of the place as the graves are all above ground and each plot has ornate decoration and sculpture making it appear like a mini-village. Evita is buried here along with Aristocracy and Noblemen of Argentina. Admiring the graves which are more like pieces of art, everyone decided they would prefer to end up there than at Bushey where land is becoming sparse anyway! The only downside in Laura's opinion was the sheer quantity of cats running around!
Having found out that Rent was on, due to Jamie's extensive research into the matter, we stopped at the theatre to pick up tickets without Dan and Emily. The three of us went for dinner and Emma experienced an attempt at pickpocketing by a slimy woman but due to Emma's quick reactions her bag and its contents were saved! We met the others at the theatre, all of us concerned that the production would not exceed expectation as it was in Spanish. Thankfully, it was a fantastic night out and the voices were comparable to Broadway. Knowing the show so well the language was never a barrier and the evening finished on a high having dessert and discussing in detail, the performances. Definately a highlight!