|Protest in Buenos Aires.|
|Market in San Telmo.|
|Charito & Ombi in BA.|
|Musicians in Parque Lezama.|
|L to R: Gaby, Nico, Alex, Gonzy, Flopy & Faby.|
As with all of my Argentine friends, the last time I saw Faby was in 2000, when we also met her husband Gabriel (Gaby) and son Nicolas (Nico). At the time they were living in Palermo, in the centre of BA. Since then they have added Gonzalo (Gonzy) and Florencia (Flopy) to their brood. What a wonderful family! They live on a spacious property in the country, which we easily accessed by bus. Faby came to pick us up from the bus stop with her youngest, Flopy, and it was as though no time had passed. We only stayed an afternoon and a night but we really made the most of it. We went to the local park with the kids, played outside, had afternoon snacks in their backyard, had a great dinner with the family, and Faby and I reminisced about old times. Just not long enough! Before we knew it, the next morning we were back on the bus making our way to BA.
|L to R: Brenda, Julian, Charo, Julia, Ombi & Nico.|
|Tango in La Boca.|
As Alex and I love walking and exploring we still managed to do a bit of that, including Puerto Madero (like a Southbank meets Docklands) and La Boca, a colourful neighbourhood which has its roots in the settlement of Italian immigrants. It's not the safest neighbourhood in BA (I was mugged there in 1999 ... but I chased my muggers and got most of my things back! As you do!) and I could not believe how over-touristy and commercial it had become. It was OTT and streaming with tourist buses, as people crowded the streets to get a glimpse of the colourful houses and couples dancing tango. It's also known to soccer-mad fans as the home to the Boca Juniors, one of the world's best known soccer clubs.
|Un besote para mi Diego!|
|With Caro & Luis at Cafe Oui Oui.|
|L to R: Alex, Diego & Fede.|
|Having a coffee with Roberto, Gladys & Charo.|
Ah, last but not least, I want to mention Charo's parents, Roberto and Gladys. They live in the same apartment as Charo in San Telmo, so we saw them frequently in our week there. What wonderful people. They made us laugh and kept us entertained and Gladys, you are a great cook! Roberto had us keeling over with some of his expressions and anecdotes. Highly intelligent and not backwards in coming forwards. Both in their 80s ... I want to be like them when I grow up!
Saturday morning had arrived. We went out with Charito to do some last minute shopping; we bought some alfajores (sweet biscuits filled with caramelised milk – there are a number of variations) and dulce de leche (caramelised milk), which in my opinion is the pinnacle of culinary utopia. Bags packed, we said our goodbyes to Charo, Gladys, Roberto and Nico (Charo's nephew who was also living in the house). I would miss them all.
|Yep, I had to bin it!|
The flight back home was tranquil, but this time I did not sleep much as we were flying early afternoon and would be arriving in Melbourne at 9.30pm. As it worked out we got into Sydney a little later, which meant that we missed our connecting flight to Melbourne. No biggie, we just caught the next available flight and got in to Melbourne at 10.30pm. We had already cleared customs in Sydney, so we were ready to go when we landed in Melbourne! Dad's taxi service was there to pick us up, as always. Thanks Dad.
Dad dropped us off and we went straight to bed. We were exhausted! Poor Alex had to go to work the next day!
|View from Charo's apartment window in san Telmo.|
Dedicacion: Para mis amigos argentinos maravillosos, quien he podido conocer y amar: Charito, Piero (no esta con nosotros fisicamente pero siempre esta en nuestros corazones), Gladys, Roberto, Carolina, Fabiana y Diego. Gracias a todos ustedes por su amor y amistad – cada uno de ustedes es muy importante para nosotros y ocupan un lugar muy especial en nuestros corazones.
Outrageous Fortunes – The Twelve Surprising Trends that will Reshape the Global Economy by Daniel Altman
"Don't be dismayed at goodbyes, a farewell is necessary before you can meet again and meeting again, after moments or lifetimes, is certain for those who are friends" – Richard Bach.
Next: Ecuador's turn to 'visit' Australia – our niece comes to Australia.
|Who counts in Argentina?|
|Ombi with Florencia (Flopy) outside her home.|
|Alex and Roberto.|
|With Faby drinking mate (pronounced ma-tay).|
|Drinking mate at Faby's place.|
|Picturesque window in La Boca.|
|Ombi and Charo in downtown BA.|
|Philosophising at El Gato Negro with Diego and Charo.|
|With Caro ... just like old times.|
|Ombi and Gladys.|
|Alex in La Boca.|
|In the streets of Buenos Aires.|