Thursday, November 27, 2008

Kamal was right to ask: why are people so unkind?

I went on a crappy city tour this morning. We were in a big coach (though the air conditioning was nice) and were only able to get out at a few places, for 15 minutes at a time. After stopping in the main square, and at the local football team's stadium, we stopped at Camanito Street, which is full of brightly painted houses and now a big tourist trap. I walked down one avenue with lots of restaurants and one of the waiters started his spiel, trying to get me in to eat. I politely smiled and said "no gracias" and kept walking. He called out to me and said I was very beautiful...not reason enough for me to eat there. On my way back, he tried again and again, I said no. He grabbed at my arm and asked me where I was from. Perhaps I shouldn't have said 'bugger off' but that's no excuse for him clapping his hands loudly and calling me a bitch. Not impressed.

Eventually the tour ended, after getting just a taste of a few of the neighbourhoods in Buenos Aires. I jumped out at Florida Street, which is a huge pedestrian avenue running at least five blocks. I enjoyed my stroll down the boulevard with a slight breeze blowing the air conditioning droplets on me, cooling me down slightly. I called in at a little snack bar to get some salami for the lettuce leaves I'd bought, and the young guy there was so much more charming and patient with my muy terrible espanol! I didn't mind the wink he gave me.

So far, not particularly in love with the place, and more than keen to get out into the countryside and up to the Iguazu Falls...it's only a 20 hour bus ride away!!

1 comment:

  1. You've really left your Bangladeshi roots behind, haven't you? Firstly, I can't believe you ENJOYED the AC on the bus. Secondly, someone asking you "what is your country?" elicited such a reaction. You've gone soft, mate. Soft.

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