Well, I missed breakfast today. It was either sleep an hour longer and eat my last Kashi bar, or get up. I ate the Kashi bar.
We went on a city tour today. I fit in pretty well here. A good portion of the locals have the same coloring as i do, but there hair is a little darker. Even when we went places on the tour as a group, most locals spoke to me in Spanish. I can really see how going somewhere for a while helps your Spanish, because i can tell mine has gotten faster just since I have been here. For all of you Amazing Race fans, we visited several places where they went. There are several on the tour that watch the show, and we pointed out the places to each other as we went by. We said when we get to Santiago, we are going to set up teams and see what we can come up with for our own race. We went to several flea markets. I bought a few shot glasses and a Yerba Mate cup and straw. It is the rage down here. It is a type of tea that gives you energy without caffeine. I have had it before, but not in one of these type cups. If you google Argentina and Yerba Mate, you should see a cup of some sort with a stainless straw. I got some video of some great local music there. Most really enjoyed the flea marks. You know the brothers… never pass up a yard sale. Most don't know how to bargain though. Hershel would have been proud me.
If you want to google some of the places we visited, you can google La Boca. It was one of the communities.
If you watch Amazing Race, you will remember a time where they had to race through this graveyard that looked like a miniature city made of mosolleums trying to find the place where the remains of Evita Peron are (the "don't cry for me Argentina…" woman). We went there, and saw her family's moseleum. I can see why the people here were so upset when Madonna was chosen to play her in that movie. They look at Evita like Oprah looks at herself. Speaking of Oprah, our tour guide kept saying "colored people" when referring to the history involving black people. The black friends in our group really got a kick out of that. We went around to all of the typical places like the government building, etc. I can't wait to show you my pictures. I can see several of these going up on my office.
We came back to the hotel, and most took taxis back to the flea markets. I walked about a mile over to the street where the normal stores are and bought a sweater for the nights. I got a great deal on a Lacoste sweater that I wouldn't have been able to afford at home. Then I came back and napped until time to go to dinner.
About 12 of us went out for dinner and dancing. We went to La Confetiria Ideal. If you google it, I'm sure it will come up. I saw Samantha Brown go there on her show when she came here. This is where the saga begins. We paid $18 pesos for lessons and dancing. They were playing typical Tango music, and we just watched. All of a sudden they played "Survivor" from Destiny's Child. We all got excited, and several got up to head to the floor. Then after about 15 seconds, the song faded out. Come to find out, they just play something drastically different like that to let the locals walk off the floor to get a drink for a second and come back to dance some more.
Some of us didn't eat dinner, so we asked if we could leave an come back. They said that was fine because the lessons didn't start until 9:30. We asked what we would need to re-enter, and she said not to worry about it because she would remember us. I should have know that was too good to be true. I could kick myself for believing her. We went to eat at a restaurant, and when we came back, they wouldn't let us in. I talked the woman into letting me go up to see if our friends were still there. Come to find out a scene happened while we were gone. The people that took our money left at 9:30, and a different group came in to give the lessons. You had to pay another $28 to a totally different company for that. There is a younger sister who is fluent (and not a pushover) that tried to work something out before we got there, but they wouldn't budge. She and the others that stayed paid the extra money. So I told her to go on with the lesson so she would waste any more of her time she paid for. I talked to the woman again, but she wouldn't budge. I thought we had it made because she went to get a calculator, but it was just so she could multiply $28 times the six of us. I have found out that the more frustrated I get, the better my Spanish gets. But I "Summer Donna" (simmered down), and tried to get the woman to just let us watch (maybe I should wear a convention badge everywhere I go at home). She said we could watch for $28. So, I gathered the troupes, and we walked out. Yet again, Hershel would have been proud.
So what do you do when you have stormed out of a Tango Hall? You go to the Shell station and buy ice cream. That's what we did, and here I am. Its probably a good thing, because the bus pulls out at 6:45 in the morning. Tomorrow, we sail over to Colonia, Uruguay on our way to Montevideo. Caio, Argentina.