May 2005

Delivery, Take out, eating in, in Buenos Aires

When we don’t feel like going out to eat or cooking, we will have something delivered from the restaurant on the corner, Zoe’s. It’s an average restaurant, nothing special, but good food. Last night, we had two entrees (filet mignon & chicken breast) and sides for $18 pesos, around $6 US….now, that’s a bargain.

teleSUR, the anti-CNN

Watching the local news tonight, I saw a segment about a new television network launched by Hugo Chavez out of Cuba called teleSUR. It has been called the anti-CNN, apparently in reference to US imperialism as seen embodied in the Atlanta-based news network. writes that teleSUR will describe the “reality and the struggles taking place in Latin America and the Caribbean.”

AlterNet, a site about alternative news media, says “Move over Al Jezeera, Telesur is here”.

It’s all not just Venezuela, though. Argentina is funding 20% of the network.

I saw some commercials from teleSUR’s new PR campaign where people say, “Yo Soy teleSUR.” Mentally, I just have the image of Chavez and Castro staring into the camera saying that line….hmmm, I wonder if teleSUR will be carried on the Miami cable companies?…Ted Turner is probably getting a good laugh out of the anti-CNN comparison. The better comparison would be anti-Fox News.

I’m actually looking forward to seeing what teleSUR has to offer. For, indeed, any news about social issues in Latin America has to be worthwhile even if there is a leftist-slant to the journalism.

El Sur

My posting here has slowed down a little in the past couple of days as I start-up another blog El Sur, Travel in South America. That site will be mainly information about tourism related topics for those visiting South America. Daily, I run across so many Web sites and issues that are broader than just Buenos Aires, so I wanted to have a place to collect that information. The postings there will generally be shorter and less personal than the ones here.

Photos from May 20 teacher protest marches

I have some photos of last week’s protest marches over on my Flickr account at Take a look at social activism in Buenos Aires!

Technical comment on Flickr: I’ve been playing around with the Flickr service today for the first time today. I probably will eventually just put most of my photos on my own hosting space here at but I wanted to examine Flickr’s functionality. I do like their slideshow tool but Flickr has at least one major problem. It doesn’t seem possible to place photos in a specific order. Flickr has an organizer tool that looks like it should allow you to order the photos as you like. However, everytime I tried it, the photos just went back to the original order. Apparently, the photos are in random order, not even by the order in which they were uploaded or by filename. Now, come on Flickr guys, this isn’t that difficult to program….maybe I missed something, but it should have worked easily. Also, as a librarian, I wonder how the tag structure is going to hold up over time over whether it will collapse under its own weight. But, there seem to be a lot of momentum behind unstructured tagging these days, e.g., technorati. Yet, that’s a topic for my Endless Hybrids blog. I’m not writing much there these days….

Las Cañas Restaurant

Last night, Sunday, Ceci and I went out to eat dinner. We had finished off her 3 days of birthday celebrations on Saturday night with a party of friends, locro, and a lot of vino. Sunday evening, we went out to eat early, about 8pm. So, the restaurants were just opening for dinner. I was in the mood for bife and we walked over to Av Corrientes, one of our favorites areas in town. Rather than going to one of our regular spots in that area (Chiquilin or Palacio de Papas Fritas), we tried calle Montevideo called Las Cañas, which is right across the street from Pippo and just half-a-block from Chiquilin. The meal was very good, though the restaurant had a slight touristy feel to it, but not too bad. However, at $44 pesos (US$15) for a dinner for two (w/o wine), we thought that it wasn’t comparable to either Chiquilin or Palacio de Papas Fritas, neither of which are that much more expensive. Indeed, during the week, Palacio de Papas Fritas has a nice set menu for $34 pesos. So, considering the options in this area, we doubt if we we will be back to Las Cañas.

Immigration in Argentina

Looking around Buenos Aires it becomes obvious that not everyone here is of Spanish descent. That’s not a new phenomenon, as Argentina has largely been a country of immigrants. In 1914 one-third of the population was foreign born. At that time, an additional 80% of the population was descended from immigrants that had arrived since 1850. The late 1800s constituted a major wave of immigration, mostly Italian and Spaniards, though Eastern Europeans as well as Turks, Lebanese, and Syrians arrived during that time also. [Source: Argentina, 1516-1987, David Rock, pp 166.]

Indian Food in Buenos Aires

To celebrate Ceci’s 32nd birthday, we went to one of the few (if not only) Indian restaurants in Buens Aires. Located at Córdoba 3547 Katmandu is a very good restaurant, though on the expensive side. Actually, it’s the most expensive meal we’ve had in BsAs, $76 pesos for a dinner for two, including wine. I had the mutton vindaloo and Ceci had her usual Indian plate of palak paneer. The restaurant reminded us both a lot of our trip to India last year.

Relocating and Living in Argentina

Relocating and Living in Argentina is a good source of information for those considering the move Buenos Aires.

25 May 1810

Today’s a national holiday, the celebration of 25 May 1810 in which the Spanish viceroyal Cisneros was disposed by the first Junta that would govern the land later known as Argentina. The new local government assumed its power in the Cabildo, a colonial building that still stands on the city’s main square. Opposite the Cabildo is the Casa Rosada, the seat of the Presidential government. The plaza is now known as Plaza de Mayo.

University of Buenos Aires

Over at the Thorn Tree a poster asked about neighborhoods around the University of Buenos Aires. I posted this reply:

UBA has separate “campuses” all over the city. On the edge of Recoleta are the medical and business schools. This area is called Facultad de Medicina. There´s a subway stop there and the area is very convenient to a wide part of BsAs. I live in this area and walk just about everywhere that I need to go. From here, it´s about a 25 minute brisk walk from here to Plaza de Mayo. It´s a wonderful area to explore on foot and I recommend it as a good area for living since it´s centrally located. The Abasto shopping mall is also within walking distance or a short taxi ride.

Unless you live in La Boca, or go to futbol games, you probably won´t have much need to ever go there after you made the one obligatory visit to see the one small street of colorful bldgs that is in every tourist guide. However, there are buses that criss-cross the city quite effortlessly for 80 centavos though they do get extremely crowded at certain times of day. There are an incredible number of bus lines in the city. Taxis are plentiful. A taxi from Facultad de Medicina to Puerto Matero runs about 7 pesos; the cost to La Boca wouldn´t be much more.

If you don´t already have a teaching job lined up, then it might be difficult. A lot of people are here doing that, though there seems to be enough turnover that people still find jobs teaching ESL. You should plan to come here with enough money that you can live on for your stay rather than depending upon a job here to support you.

Be aware as poster #1 mentioned that UBA is spread all over town. They have a place that teaches ESL on Av de Mayo and the engineering school is in San Telmo. The large UBA campus (sciences, architecture) is in Nuñez, which can be up to 40 minutes by bus from Facultad de Medicina depending upon traffic; no subway to this location. There are still other UBA places tucked around in various corners of the city.

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