Suitcase on wheels     stuck in the snow   sniffer dog

Sunday, June 26, 2005

36. Zoo, Tigre (B.A, Argentina)

Woohoo, this blog has recently hit 1000 visits. Thanks for stopping by. Hmmm, 1000 visits in six months = about 5 visits a day. Not exactly blazing hot. My post on teaching English in BA was recently published on

Room pano
Random pic: My $12 peso hotel room for the last 3 months

Last weekend was a long weekend here, so me and my girlfriend got off to a good start by breaking up, again. What happened was my friend Juan came around on an unexpected visit at 1am on Friday night so we sat around chatting over a glass or four of Fernet. The problem was we were chatting in English, which my girlfriend doesn't speak, so she stormed off in a shitty. When she came back at 5am she was the most mad I've ever seen her, silent treatmeant and then snapping, and it was late and I was tired so not really putting up with it. Eventually she stormed out with a No Quiero verte mas! which means "I don't want to see you anymore". I stewed over that for a while before finding her and apologising, and we were back together.

Zoo - 01 - Polar
A lone polar bear in his concrete hangout

So the next day we went to the Buenos Aires zoo, in the suburb of Palermo. It was great, the enclosures were small and completely unnatural for the animals, which meant we didn't have to walk far or squint to see anything. The highlight for me was watching a teenage chimp chewing on his own turd. And you could hand-feed the animals too, from the bears to the birds, if you were willing to pay a few more pesos for a box generic animal feed.

Zoo - 11 - Lions

Monday was a public holiday so along with two thirds of Buenos Aires, we set off to Tigre, a favourite porteƱo weekend getaway. An hour by train, Tigre sits at the convergence of the two rivers which make up the River Plate, on which Buenos Aires sits. Where the rivers converge is a delta, which means the river gets wide with lots of islands in it. People own sections and have built houses on these islands, the main attraction being surrounded by water and getting around by boat as there are no roads. Due to our usual weekend oversleeping (daily oversleeping for my waitress girlfriend) we didn't get to Tigre until about 4pm, which was time enough to take a boat ride on one of the lanchas (longboats) which serve as buses before dark. So we motored around while the locals boarded and unboarded(?) with their groceries. I enjoyed it, it was a nice place and one of my students who used to live there said it's great in the summer, everyone sits out on their jetties sipping mate (mah-tay).

Tigre - 03 - House
A house in Tigre. Like many it has its own island

This weekend I have no major plans, next week's my birthday so I'm organising a night out for Friday night. In other news, I think I'm going to be leaving Buenos Aires in August to see some of South America. It's time to go travelling! I'm sick of the city and even more sick of teaching English. I guess it's not really my bag. It can be fun, but I don't know if I'm very good at it. And the pay is pretty lousy. BA is probably a great city if you've got a lot of money to spend, but living as a teacher I haven't. Remember I've been constantly dipping into my savings anyway. So, I'll stay until my courses finish in July and then move on. Trent, a good friend of mine from NZ is coming to BA at the end of July for a few days, and then in August Juan and Posse and I are gonna do a road trip to Santiago in Chile.


  • Hi! Nice pic of Tigre. I live in San Isidro, which is near there and is worth a short visit. It was great you got to take the locals 'lancha' cause it shows you the two sections of the islands: the one with all the facilities, with nice summer houses (some with swimming pools, Internet access and satellite TV); and the the one with more modest houses where more humble families live all year round. My mother used to work around the schools in that area and it was always interesting to go and interact with people. They're very close to us (geographically)but lead such a different type of life.
    Anyway... I found your blog through BAExpats and I found it very interesting. I guess it's not only your mom and friends back in NZ the only ones who read it now!

    By Anonymous Laura, at 12:12 AM  

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