Tag Archives: El beso

Hitting the wall

We have settled into a pattern, one good milonga, one bad. So  Friday at El Abrazo we did not expect much. So it was at the start, Viv was not missing tandas, but she was, just the same struggling. By an hour in though we were in our stride, it was non stop tango for us both.

I sat out the usual Pugliese but apart from that I never rested.  So by half seven we had been there four hours, I was in need of some food and rest.  Then I just hit the wall, I had nothing left.  I missed three tandas and changed my shoes. On seeing this Viv came over, I told her I would go for a coffee and she could stay.  She was having a great time, but she came with me anyway.

Highlight of my day though was a dance with Eli, the organizer. It has taken me a while, but I finally got there.

After a coffee and some apple crumble I felt ok again, but for today El Beso was over. Fed up with Corrientes we walked home along Lavalle for a change, picking up some stout and bread on our way.

Two days on the run, four hours dancing without rest, must be some sort of record.

Saturday we were washed out. We took the subte down to town to pick some things up for Viv, but the day has just been a relaxing one. I did not even make it to see the rugby.

Of interest today though was our butcher. It is a world wide phenomenon to make fun of foreigners, to me this is not demeaning, just enjoying the difference.  Well today the butcher was having great fun at my expense, it made him happy and we had a laugh about it as well. Of all people, I have no right to take offense, and non was taken.


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Another smoky day in Buenos Aires. They say that it is the fires on the pampas, nothing to do with all the pollution they are generating here then.

Two weeks ago Juan announced there would be no milonga today, but under pressure last week he said that despite the strike we would have a milonga. Now having been jaded somewhat by events here, I take nothing for granted. Hoy milonga was still announcing Milonga de Juan for today but still I contacted Juan on Whatsapp, he told me that yes there would be a milonga. So now, prompted into action he announced it on facebook.

So I have Whatsapp, Hoy milonga, and Facebook, so it must be on. So we set out with no plan B. At La Nacional the door was locked with a note “No Milonga Hoy” I did not feel like coming past our place to go to Canning, somehow home  is home and we do not like to just pass. So we walked to El Beso but without any information, and there is no milonga there today.

We retired for a coffee at the bar opposite. We debated what to do and decided to go into town to get Viv some make up.  We have been trying for a while and always managed to arrive when Avon is closed, today we succeeded. Although I did worry when I saw the news on the TV in the bar. The people demonstrating were all around the Obalisco just yards from the shop. Then, on the way home, I went to get my hair cut. So the day was not completely lost.

Lazy afternoon on the balcon then and Viv’s special bolognaise for later.


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Is there a War on?

Sometimes you just wonder, our favourite dietetica has now been open for two weeks. Plenty of time to stock up, you would think. However they only had 1kg of extra fine oats, no instant or any other oats. Now for the prunes, no, not until Monday. This is Argentine time, Monday could be August.

Then it was round to my favourite verduraria, completely shut up. At least the Chinese are always open. Viv says we need to get more food stamps, she may be right.

We have good days and bad. This was not one of the good. When we arrived at Beso Vivs usual seat was taken and there was a whole row of tourists there. She had to sit by me for a while, even after she moved it was poor fishing. I moved later to allow room for a couple, but as there were too many women it did not give me a problem.

The dancing was not good either, while the floor looked less crowded, the new intake were mainly non tango dancers. So they would come onto the floor shuffle around and be totally unable to use the space.  There was much bumping and treading on feet.

We said goodbye to Maria today as well, she flies home tomorrow. Over the next week quite a few of our friends will be leaving us. We will not be going yet though, they will have to put up with us a few more weeks yet.

We left early for some Quilmes Stout. The answer to all problems.

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The weekend starts here

Friday was just another El Beso Day, we did little in the morning as I was too busy repairing the wall and re-hanging the curtains.

We still find El Beso difficult though, I may have to re-think our seating positions. Where I sit is fine until everyone gets up, then my view of the floor is completely lost. Still we danced until seven then it was back for our chop suey and prepare for the weekend.

Saturday and we were up at a reasonable hour, breakfast of coffee and media lunas then we were out heading for Palermo. The walk over to Sullivan’s takes about twenty-five minutes and we arrived while all the pre match rubbish was playing. I ordered Quilmes Negra, typical of here, it is on the menu but they do not have it. Celtic stout is more expensive and lo and behold they do have that. They did furnish us with a bowl of nuts though to keep us going.

They are quite accommodating here I asked for the commentary and they switched off the music and put on the commentary. Not that I could understand a lot of it, but it was amusing when they named the wrong players.

It looked like we were the only ones here for the rugby, but by halfway through the first half there were maybe eight or ten in here. As Wales soundly thrashed the Scots team, the contingent of Scots were quiet. .

On a trip down Scalabrini Ortiz we stopped off to check out a furniture shop. Our old stomping ground this and we always like the shops down here, we found a coffee table we liked, but now we are unsure whether to spend the money. Maybe we will be back, maybe not.

We took the “D” line into town just to check out Ideal. It looks no different to me, I think someone is just siphoning money off, and the work will never be done. Still while we are here, check out the shoe shops. Viv managed to pick up a bargain pair. Unusually they were not battered or the wrong size $650 about £26 at todays rates. Viv is one happy bunny. Nice shoes as well.

Back on the subte The “A” line this time, out to Castro Barros. I need some tools and things from Easy. Bad move, Saturday is not a good time in any sort of supermarket in Buenos Aires. As always I got about half of what I wanted, things are quite different here. I did get what I can only describe as a flat plate covered in sanding material. We have nothing like this at home, but then they have nothing here like we have, you just have to adapt.

Back home again along Salguero and I can catch up with the Ireland France match. You have to feel for the French 13-12 up until the final kick, but then that is the best time to kick a field goal.

Sunday morning and I am free, Viv would rather do housework than come to Sullivan’s. No-one to stop my beer intake then. No surprises as England beat Italy. I expected some new tricks again from Italy but they had nothing new this year, shame, they were fun last year. Still they played well, the score line not reflecting how hard they tried.

I got talking to a guy called Michael from Hertfordshire.  He is working here and as he relayed his story I suddenly remembered him from last year. Unfortunately he will not be here for the England Wales match but will be back for some later matches.

I also got talking to a couple who are taking a year out to see South America. They told me that they could find no-one showing the Rugby in the City, but came across an ex-pats site where someone had said they would be here. That would be me then, oh! the power of advertising, perhaps I should get a discount bringing customers in.

Sunday night is Fulgor night.  I don’t know what Ruben is thinking, two hours constant tango, no Vals, no Milonga and too much Tanturi. Is it any wonder the numbers are falling? Still we were happy with our Quilmes Negra. (no one to tell Viv how much I have already had). Next week is carnival, Elsa said she is bringing us some props, mask, hats, and other dressing up stuff.

The people here come and go and we never know where, but tonight we heard an old friend had died last May. Found him dead at the wheel of his taxi apparently. No life, is it? Work until you drop.

After the tropical, we finally got a vals tanda, then a milonga, more tropical, then Pugliese. In the words of Eric Thompson “Time for bed” said Zeberdee.

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Fifty shades of Grey

I had postal duties again this morning, when my number was called I ended up with the girl who wanted my passport again. This time I was ready for her, what I was not ready for was the cost. I was paying my internet bill at the same time, so when I gave her ar$1100 I expected it to be enough, but she kept asking for more. When I checked the receipt she had charged me the equivalent of over £10 to post a card. Next time I will wait for a different girl.

The shirt that was due to be worn last night, I decided was too good for Fulgor. This turned out to be a mistake. For once in El Beso it was me having trouble getting dances. It looks like no one can see me in my grey shirt, I have become The Invisible Man. Ladies were looking straight at me but not seeing me. Never have I missed so many tandas.

In the end I had to go up to the ladies tables and ask. This is a risky strategy as some one may well have cabeceo in between and I risked being left just standing there.

Despite all this we had an enjoyable time, but must remember, no grey for Beso.

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El Simbolo

Milongas are a strange breed, you never quite know how they will turn out, who will be there and who will dance with you. So it was with El Beso today. It started out well for Viv, she hardly missed a tanda , but when las borrachas arrived there was chaos around her. When she got back from her dance, her glasses were no longer on the table. I had been dancing with Graciela and stayed to help look, but we had no success. When Zoraida did the announcements she told of the lost glasses.  It seems a lady at the back had them. She had been sitting by Viv and was a constant irritation moving seats and shifting tables. Even at one point knocking over Vivs drink.

As I danced with one lady she asked me about my wife ” are you not jealous, she dances so close” I told her “Well I dance close” “but you are a man” she said I explained it is only a love of tango, we both love to dance. The Argentines have a funny set of morals, it’s ok for the men but not the women. Viv did not miss a tanda afterwards though.

We must be getting fitter at last, we stayed until seven-thirty, then set off on the walk home. On the corner of Corrientes and Bulnes we saw a place advertising Revueltos called El Simbolo, so we decided to stop. They called it Revuelto something or other I had not heard before so I asked what it was. Egg ham chips, just the same so we ordered two and some beer. The place looked grotty but the food was good and only just around the corner. We may well be back. Only AR$310 that’s £12.40 to you, got to love it.


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Why the dinosaurs died out

Well, it is that time of the month again?  The first time I must pay my expensas this year. I have marked on a previous bill what to enter, what could possibly go wrong? At the bank there was no queue so I was straight to the machine “Identificar sin Tarjeta” “Si” “ingreso tu numero” I put in the first number on my list. “Ingreso tu cuenta” second number. Then it said “ingreso tu numero identificar” now to me that means my passport number or DNI. Last year it gave me the option of a deposit or a bill. Must have done something wrong, so I crashed back to the beginning, I got a different result this time still no request for a deposit.  Third attempt still no luck. I am sure this is what happened to the dinosaurs, It was not a big meteor that killed them off, but stupid technology designed to finish off anyone not able to keep up.

Paid my electric bill OK, you see I was dealing with a person. Bought some steak, even though I know nothing about butchery, because, yes I was dealing with a person. Hopefully tonight there will be a concorcio meeting and I can pay my money direct to Mirtha. Whilst trying to pay for my meat, I was struggling with my bag. I could not hold it open and put my stuff in, then this dear old lady came  and held my bag open for me. The country may be crazy but the people are just the friendliest.

It was a funny day at El Beso today, everyone seemed to huddle in one spot. Viv, it has to be said, never missed a tanda, but from where I was sitting cabeceo was all but impossible. I had to go on the prowl to get dances, only one woman refused, her loss I think. Teresa commented that even though there were more men to dance with, she got few dances. She was right in my line of vision so she got a lot with me. I told her she could have no more or we would have to get married.

At six thirty we’d had enough and wet home for some food.

We enjoyed our steak and then I went down to check on the meeting downstairs. There is little point in me going early as mainly they are just rowing and I cannot follow what is happening. Anyway it was supposed to run from 8 until 9, I went down at 8:30 and there was no one there. Looks like they have all given up. Bugger, Viv just told me I was a week early.



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