Sunday, September 24, 2006

First 24 Hours in Córdoba

The thirteen hour bus ride from Buenos Aires to Córdoba was one of the easiest bus rides any of us had taken. For less than US$30 we got a seat that almost reclined horizontally on the second floor for the double decker (Alex had the front seat with the big window to his front and left side), a dinner of beef, chicken rice, mashed potatoes, dulce de leche dessert, a roll, Coke and a Styrofoam cup of whiskey "on the rocks" as the Argentine man serving the food told me in his best USA accent (not "American" accent because everyone in North and South America are "Americans." They get very angry down here if you claim to be an American if you are from the USA but don't consider Argentines and other South Americans Americans).

Now if you are caught drinking on a Grey Hound bus in the States you get kicked off. They won't even allow you on the bus if you have alcohol on your breath. But on these buses, not only do they let you bring beer on and drink it at your seat, they serve you whiskey as part of your ticket price. A guy walks around with a bottle and Styrofoam cups with ice cubes and pours you a whiskey. wow.

Got to Córdoba around 7am, ate some breakfast and came to the Peperina Hostel. They have WiFi and had an available room with two bunk beds that we could "own" for the duration of our stay so we took it over other hostels in the area. Little did we know that it was also staff by some of the coolest people we have met to date. Soledad was working the front desk when we checked in. Nicolás worked the desk later that afternoon. We would end up going out with both of them later that night, but more on that soon.

There was a group of 10 women in town from Santa Fe, Argentina for a translating convention. Alex had no problem making friends with them. We all ate dinner together, an Asado, or barbecue, prepared by Nicolás. Beef of course, which I was told was extremely good. Nicolás was kind enough to make me grilled red peppers with cheese, egg and spices cooked into the bowl like halves of pepper.

After dinner about ten of us went to a bar. It was me, Alex and Mateo (Andrew was down with the nasty flu he caught from me), Nicolás, Soledad and Marcel from the hostel, Soledad's sister, Cynthia and about four others. Bars in Córdoba are non-smoking, a welcome change from the smoke filled bars of Beunos Aires. After a number of beers and good conversation, mostly in Spanish, we went to a very crowded night club. There was a line to get in but Marcel whispered something to the over-stuffed doorman/bouncer and the velvet rope was lifted for us to enter. I wasn't really into the music. Mostly jock rock and oldies but the Argentines loved it, singing out loud and swaying and hopping around as opposed to dancing. It was more like an excited karaoke than a dance club. Mateo and Alex danced with our crew while I monitored the beer quality.

Left the club at 3:30am and someone had the idea to keep going. We went to a seedy "underground" club that looked illegal called El Ojo Bizarro, The Bizarre Eye. The place was packed with underground types - punks, alternatives, transvestites, gays - and the DJ was outstanding. Traded in our drink tickets for beer with the transvestite bartender and got down to some serious electronica dancing, a good time had by all.

Stumbled out of the club at 6am and decided to drive up into the park to watch the sunrise. I'm surprised none of us saw it in Buenos Aires where it is a weekly ritual for the Porteños (to be up for sunrise, not necessarily make it a point to go somewhere and watch it ascend). Got back to the hostel, made some eggs and got to bed around 8:30am; fhew...

Woke at 12:30, ate some lunch and got to work. Its a long process, converting the high definition video we are shooting to DV compressed files but the footage looks GREAT! The Panasonic HVX200 is an outrageous camera (and Andrew, who has done 90% of the shooting so far, is a great cinematographer).


At 8:13 PM, Blogger Theodora said...

Did you get any pictures of the club the bizzare eye? Sounds cool.

At 6:56 AM, Blogger ::rentastic:: said...


At 6:58 AM, Blogger ::rentastic:: said...

EEEZ ok!


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