Tag Archives: Club Fulgor

A cold damp day

I expect no sympathy from home, cold here is twenty degrees, but people still look miserable on the street. They don’t know when to be happy here, yesterday they were complaining “it’s too hot and humid” today it is cold and wet. I still have my shorts on in the day though and sleep without covers at night.

I needed no protection when I went over to the supermarket for milk, although I did see people with umbrellas. Not really needed, as this is only light rain, nothing like the torrent we had yesterday. The biggest risk is getting splashed from the water under the loose flags, not from falling rain.

Not to be put off we set off on a walk down Corrientes. We found a Chinese run shop that had a few things we needed, but ended up inevitably in the Abasto Centre. It’s all a bit high-end for me in here, but still at times amusing. There is a men’s clothing shop called Bridge End, trying hard to be very English. There are union flags everywhere even on belt buckles, then I noticed underpants printed with the London Underground. Begs the obvious question “Where is Cockfosters?”

We had a quick root around in Coto on the way back. I was not for buying anything, I don’t have enough life left for the queues here, but I just wanted to look if they had any chairs. Nothing of any good is the answer. So we bought some biscuits in the local Chino and went home for a coffee.

We never know what to expect when we return to a milonga, Fulgor was still there, but we were on our own when we arrived. Roberto is still running it and Ruben is still the DJ. His music seems to have improved, but we still get the tropical every half hour.  The numbers never passed a dozen though and I still wonder how long can this carry on. We got the usual kisses off Bebe at the door and Marian Roberto and Ruben. Then as the regulars arrived we had to stop dancing each time to be welcomed back.

There was no Norma tonight but I did get a dance with Bebe. They may be low in numbers here but they do have a good time, nobody comes here to be miserable and we danced our socks off.

 

We managed to get home without getting wet as well, so a good night then.

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Lunch with the German and French

Today is a day for entertaining and saying goodbye. We had Philippe and Walter around, Walter will look after our flat for another year.  We then went out to El Rey for some lunch. It was raining when we left so I had to rush back up to get some umbrellas, Vivs was hidden behind  the bedroom door so we managed with three.

I thought that we were going to have a whole chicken between us, but Walter wanted Sea Food. This caused us a problem, firstly it was late arriving and then it was not so good. On top of this we could not finish the whole chicken, very un English. Still we blamed the Frenchman. You can still do food cheap here, bottle of Malbec, litre of stout and four meals for less than forty quid including a good tip.

As you would expect the conversation gravitated to brexit.  It was nice to actually have a reasoned debate and Walter brought up some good points. Seems it is not just the British who don’t like Merkel’s policies. I liked his thoughts, that we should remain to disentangle Europe rather than abandon it, I never though of it that way before. On the way back we met Sebastian outside the building, it was a good opportunity to introduce him to Walter.

After coffee everyone left and we set off for some last minute shopping.

Club Fulgor is getting lower in numbers, every year we think that it cannot survive yet every year we come back and it is still here, let’s hope it continues. Everyone was especially welcoming tonight, I think that they were not sure we would still be here. When a German couple came in I was, again, called over to translate for them. The problem was that their English was not good, that combined with my complete lack of German and poor Spanish made things difficult. That said my lack of language skills is more than made up for by my local knowledge and I managed to sort them out.

We still were not one hundred percent, but we danced and I danced with Bebe and Norma, but by sorteo time we were ready for off. Then it was time for the big goodbyes. Explaining that we fly Tuesday and will be back in January with every kiss. Quite an exhausting and emotional time. The walk back seemed not so bad tonight after that, even dog shit corner did not smell as foul. Maybe it was the extra beer we drank today or maybe we are just too tired to notice.

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New best Empanadas in Buenos Aires

We travelled out to Flores today to have lunch at Maggies and were joined by Mimi, Semiha, Hubert and Paloma. The first thing I had to do was take stick from our French friends for the Rugby. Of course they bribed the referee, how else do you explain that ending? The mood was light hearted though.

Language soon defaulted to Spanish, and we learned why Paloma is so good at it, she has Spanish parents and the household language is Spanish. So we have no hope of competing there then.  It seems everyone is better at it than us, even Viv seems to understand more than she admits. Still it was unfair that she was put in a class with Semiha, who is better than me even though I was in the higher class.

We had some tuna and anchovies in cream sauce, I never thought Viv would eat it but she did and enjoyed it. Still surprising me after all these years. Yesterday I said I had the best empanadas in Buenos Aires, well that was before I had Maggies home made ones. I have to review my opinions now.

We drank a lot of vino tinto and champagne after and during the food, but it’s OK I don’t have to drive the train back. When half five came we were ready for the off. I can take Spanish at this level for a while but for this long I find it exhausting. It is a shame I cannot have an hour a day then I might improve, but after two hours my brain switches off and nothing computes any more. We were helped, of course, by Mimi Maggie and Hubert, but even so my brain can only take so much. Still we had a great time and good company even a little dancing.

It took us over an hour to get there and I said “Instead of taking the subte all the way back, let’s get off at Castro Barras and walk” so we did. The total journey time was less than half an hour. Let the legs take the strain I say.

As we walked to Fulgor tonight we saw a guy sitting in a doorway changing his shoes. I thought it strange, but when he came in he seemed to know everyone. Turns out he was an American Named Richard, he was later joined by a German named Ute. They danced very well unlike the tall couple who were also there. They took giant leaps around the floor, never looking where they were going, too intent on their feet.

I got Bebe up for a dance and spent most of the time trying to avoid the tall hazard. I said to Bebe that when I first came here, I had to audition for Roberto in order to be allowed into the Club. Standards have dropped now, it seems. I suppose this is understandable as the numbers here are nothing like they were  in 2008. In those days if you were not early and had no reserva, you would not get a seat.

The place has definitely lost some sparkle, the music of Ruben does not help, but I think that many of the old regulars are either dead or too unfit to come now. Tonight we did not sparkle either, we left at ten thirty.  Let’s hope we feel better for our last couple of attendances.

 

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Sarmiento

We took the subte down into town to try again to buy some shoes from Flabella. Again it was shut, Darcos net door was open but full of old tired looking shoes. With the factory gone in Sarmiento, I think it will not be here long and the way Flabella is shaping it may well be another business that will crash. If they could see themselves as we see them, then they would come to realize that the ills of this country are all self imposed. Still nothing we can do.

Across the road is Suipacha 256 and Viv is tempted by some shoes here, but they are a bit “old woman” comfortable but with a low heel. We may yet come back.

We decided to walk on up Sarmiento and after about seven blocks we stopped at a bar “La Celta” well, it was calling us. They had tango music playing in the background and an olde worlde atmosphere that made us feel very much at home. I even had a sing along to “Mi Buenos Aires Querido” which I had learned in a distant Spanish class. After our coffee we carried on walking until we found Neo Tango. The shoes here were also tight on Viv. Too much time in boots and trainers we think. It may be that the “old women” shoes are the only ones that fit her.

Later that night we went to Pachi Bar again. We eat earlier than the Argentines and it says food all day. When we sat down though we were told that there was no food until eight. Nothing for it then but a Bottle of stout and some nibbles. By the time we got food we were on our second bottle. Strong stuff to be drinking by the litre on an empty stomach. Still we did not have far to go home.

Sunday night is Fulgor night and we see the return of Roberto. There are a few more here tonight and we wonder if it is because Roberto is back but maybe not. It seems to have appeared on the tourist radar Germans and French made up the additions. There was one old local guy who had my respect; he walked with a stick and I could see when he sat down that he had a brace on his leg. He was still up dancing though, close up tango for support and with his stick for the Tropical.

More stout tonight and a bonus glass of bubbly as Roberto reinstated the sorteo and again I won. He made it more complicated though; the three winners of the bubbly had to name a number one to twenty two and if it matched the number in the envelope you win 100$ar. Well I missed, but it rolls over next week it’s 200$ar.

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Eclipse?

I bit of a damp squid this, they predicted an Eclipse in the local papers. Maybe it was my lack of understanding, but while the local TV showed it happening in Chubut there was not a sign here. We could have done with a bit of darkness to drop the temperature, still I came here to get away from the winter so cannot complain too much about the heat.

I was going to Sullivan’s this morning to watch the Rugby, but Viv did not want to go and Geoff decided to watch it on freeview. So not wanting to be Billie no mates I stayed in to watch it myself on freeview.  I thought I struggled with the rules, but it seems I am not the only one. The Italians developed a whole new game plan that thwarted the English team. It seems that they were using the rules to their advantage, and the English were totally flummoxed. The weaker side and fifty to one outsiders, they very nearly carried it off. Fair dos to the French referee, he had the best game of all. When asked what they could do about it he said “I am a referee, not a Coach”

We hit the chino afterwards, first time ever we spent over £20. More a result of our shortages than sudden inflation. Although inflation is a big problem here, household items like washing liquid and other cleaning items are for some reason expensive here. I bought some cheddar (not typical here) it was 170$ar a kilo. I checked Asda price at home and Cathedral city is 200$ar per kilo. So even on non typical Items they are still cheaper than at home.

I know I should not complain, but the walk to Club Fulgor was too hot. With no cloud and the sun gone you would expect some drop in temperature, but it was barely discernible. When we got there one of the air conditioners was not working and it was way above the Cities recommended 24 degrees.

Still we danced, and I danced with Norma and had another lovely dance with Bebe. The couple we met last year from Cumbria were here again, still not attending many milongas, but happy being here. We had our usual agua con gas and Quilmes stout served up by Mariana, who was returning after last weeks bout of sickness. Her son (we think) was there all night to watch over her, but I thought she still looked unwell, despite her ever present cheerfulness.

We stayed later again but by eleven we had enough, a Puliese tanda, I did not like the first track, danced the second and sat down for the third. So we changed our shoes. All packed and ready to go and Ruben put on Tango Negro, I shouted at him “he cambio mis zapatos” he just laughed. Viv said I should have told him to play it earlier next week, but I think he got the message.

When we got back we had left our air con on, set to 24 degrees, it felt like a fridge after Fulgor.

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There’s only one Juan Caceres

How nice to wake up to all services working. Today I can cook breakfast and have coffee from our new machine. Ah the little things that we so miss when deprived of them. Later I stroll around to Philippe’s and we chat while he cooks dinner for Mariela. He speaks far better English than I speak Spanish (French not at all) but he did not quite understand when I told him that the tray must be hot before you put potato slices on it, or they will stick. They stuck. I should know I have spent many hours watching an expert.

We went out to meet the bus and I said hello to Mariela and her daughters. When we had all kissed I left them to it and went back home.

The sun is glorious, and I am topping up my vitamin D just walking along. We never sit in it but it still lifts my spirits.

When I came back we walked up Corrientes to get some plants, two ficus veriagata at 100$ar each. The girl at the cash desk said something about cash discount and only charged me 170$ar. I saw the notice afterwards but I was pleased just the same. Everyone likes a bargain, two ficus plants for £8.50 not bad.

Club Fulgor tonight is looking a bit empty. So many of the locals are not returning, usually by this time of year the numbers are starting to rise. Roberto is not there to keep things organized and even Mariana has had a night off, things are looking bad for my favourite Darby and Joan club. Still those who were there had a great time as usual. The tall teaching couple were there, trying to out demo us as we parried around the floor, and I had a couple of dances with Norma and Bebe just for variety.

We were almost ready to leave and a milonga tanda came on, starting with Tango Negro. During the second track Viv asked If this was also Caseres to which I replied No there’s only one Juan Caseres, I could have shouted it out but I don’t think the locals would understand.

So here it is for your enjoyment

Again ready to leave he played a mixed Vals tanda starting with Puliese Desde de Alma. Again I could not leave. So we stayed later than ever, out staying many locals who have cars to drive home in.

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Mentioned the war once, I think I got away with it.

Eating here is always a surprise. I suppose I should just ask, but when we are in a hurry I will just grab something from the confiteria, and well, just not know what it is. Today I grabbed two medialunas, they looked like they were just covered with coconut but inside they were filled with custard. Sometimes it is apple sometimes it is chocolate, not knowing saves me having to make a decision.

Philippe visited today with Walter, hopefully our tenant for next year. Everything looks good. I was a bit worried though when he started on about the war, I always thought it was the British that harped back not the Germans. It turned out however he was on about his divorce war.

After this I watched the second half of the rugby. Again there was some strange goings on, but for me, I have just been denied another chance to bait the French here and Philippe in particular. I think that they deserved the win and that denied try as well, just do not tell any French that I know.

Another Fulgor Sunday and the number of regulars is right down. Funnily enough the actual numbers was up, many people here I have not seen before. There was one tall guy who we managed to entice into dancing with Viv. Turned out he was German as well. It was Viv’s turn not to mention the war, actually she said very little, she can’t even remember his name. I think it might have been Adolf or Herman.

Mariana was in a better mood this week. from her facebook status I think she had problems last week, but she was all smiles again. Still not taking any chances I said to Bebe that we can dance when she finishes. She then asked if I wanted to dance now, so we did. As it was only half a tanda we had another dance later. But the first time I tried I got a crossed cabeceo and ended up with Norma. Still I am not complaining, the ladies are very appreciative and that makes the dances enjoyable. Meanwhile our German tried dancing with the blond lady and found out why I don’t  dance with her, he got half a tanda and she sat down. He was not there much longer.

No Roberto and no sorteo again tonight so I can walk home in a straight line. It was a warm walk though with my waterproof on, it was not actually raining, but no point in taking chances.

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