Sunday, March 2, 2008

Avenida Corrientes

It is nearly impossible to shoot street scenes that capture the feeling and perspective you get from walking around the city. But the other day I was on Avenida Corrientes heading toward the emblematic obelisk that stands in the middle of Avenida 9 de Julio. I took the above photo. Click to enlarge it.

I vividly remember looking at a photograph of that obelisk in a high school Spanish textbook and thinking: "Buenos Aires? Huh."

Oh crap! No, what I meant was, I remember thinking: "Buenos Aires? What an impossibly romantic place, full of mystery and wonder! O, to dance the tango and dine on world-class beef! To read Borges and wile away the hours in turn-of-the-century cafes! Someday I shall live there."

The obelisk is flanked

Wait. Before we go on, I have to confess something. I lied two paragraphs up. I'm really sorry.

I do remember seeing that photo in my textbook in high school. But overall, my reaction was much more along the lines of "huh." I was probably a lot more worried about when class would be over and if I could finish my homework for next period by the time the bell rang.

* * *

The obelisk is flanked by two small plazas that stand in the middle of what is supposedly the widest avenue in the world, Avenida 9 de Julio.

I walked by as an honor guard was taking down the flag down in one of the plazas. When they finished, they strolled back to their waiting bus.

I love the surreal image of these flesh-and-blood toy soldiers against the banal backdrop of a crosswalk in the middle of downtown.


Matt said...

Come on Dan, you've got less than a month left in BA...write about something interesting goddamn it. I have a couple of suggestions:

1. A post about how Argentines love their ice cream (my own title suggestion: "In Buenos Aires, they're passionate about their ice cream.")

2. A post about how portenos eat gnocchi on the 29th of every mont (suggested title: "Once a Month, Gnocchi Rule the Pampas.")

Neither idea has been covered by any other blogger or joulranist in Buenos Aires. You could be the very first. This time, I'm offering compensation in noquis (bet you'd be more interested if i were offering ice cream. Or even milanesas).

Dan said...

Oh, please. Write about something interesting?

This is clearly a thinly veiled attempt to goad me into writing about inflation again. Beef prices are up 17% since December. Seventeen percent!

Matt said...

I'm sorry...inflation? In Argentina? Seriously? Is that not worth an article? Come on man... where the bollocks are your journalistic instincts? I thought you were a serious blogger. Shame on you.