Tag Archives: Nuevo Chique

Shoes

We took the subte down into town quite early as we did not want to miss any dancing, this was a mistake, as nothing here opens until Buenos Aires time. My second mistake was heading down Corrientes instead of Diagonal. I always seem to do this for some reason. Still, it only means an extra block and we got to walk past Confiteria Ideal.  Today, for the first time, we saw signs of work going on. The small door in the shutters was open and a guy in overalls was outside having a smoke. He raised no objection when I stuck my head in, so I had a good look. Not surprisingly they have altered nothing but it all looks repaired and new. The ceilings  are freshly painted and the plaster work is picked out in gold. Obviously there was a lot of scaffold and ladders,  but it does look very promising. I just hope that rumours about there being no dancing there are false. I so look forward to returning to this fabulous venue.

It was half ten and only one shoe shop was open, and there was not much in there. Vivs  favourite, Las Marianas, did have opening hours on the door 11:00 – 19:00. This being Argentina, there was no point waiting so we went to look for coffee.  Across the road, on Diagonal, we saw another The Coffee Store, so that was it then. Coffee and medialunas only $70. It is $72 just for coffee in Martinez. We wondered where this chain had sprung up from, but it seems it has been operating as a franchise since 1997. How have we missed it for so long? And these medialunas are to die for.

We got back and the eleven o’clock opening became ten to twelve, but it was worth it. Viv now has two extra pairs for dancing here.

Something happened in Nuevo Chique today, I am not sure what, maybe it is just us. The numbers were right down so dancing was easier, but something was missing. I was quite enjoying it, but Viv left at six thirty to go for a coffee, so, of course, I had to leave after a couple more tandas.

Viv had gone to the new coffee bar underneath, they had all but thrown her out and another guy had been refused “We are closing” they said. I don’t get it, the furnishings and windows must have cost a fortune, surely they need to recover as much money and as quickly as they can. We don’t expect this place to be here next year, and it will all be the governments fault, and the USA and, of course, The IMF Vultures.

Well it’s back to some fresh pasta and Viv’s Bolognese followed by Quilmes Negra. They see me most nights in the Chino, I’m sure they think I am alcoholic.

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Kingsman

Any questions about Kingsman, refer to the film or https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kingsman:_The_Secret_Service

Sad day today, after today every day will be a last. So this is our penultimate Thursday, but not our actual penultimate Chique. If you have been following you will understand, but the weeks entries will explain if not.

Not a lot of men today, so not so good for Viv, but for me? I could not get through all the women waiting for me.

Two new characters arrived today, I am not sure that they were together. One wore a suit tie and thick rimmed glasses, the other wore tailored trousers a sports jacket and also thick rimmed glasses. Immediately I christened them Kingsmen. I expected any moment a glass to go flying across the room and some assailant to be rendered unconscious. The younger one, in the sports jacket I christened Degsie. He was tall and scoured the room for all the tall women, Harry kept a low profile but was always up dancing. Never once did I hear “manners maketh man” but then, perhaps, they had new lines now.

We left early again and went for a coffee at Confiteria Giucris. We have stopped here before, good facturas, good coffee, and amazingly cheap. We still miss El Revolutionario but this place definitely softens the blow. Then home to Viv’s stew and a bottle of Quilmes Negra.

 

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Some good, some bad

We are back at our usual place in Nuevo Chique today. We arrived early so had our normal seats, and from the start the going was good. Many regulars were missing though. This is partly the tourist lull, normal at this time of year, but also something to do with some football match. If you know about these things perhaps you can fill the gap for me.

The standard of dancing was very variable. At one point I was dancing completely surrounded, with only inches to spare, yet every one was moving well and never even touched. Tango heaven as it should be. At another point there were idiots doing boleos and Viv managed to get a graze right up her leg. Fortunately blood was not drawn, but I am fed up of forever saying “Tacos abajo”. Dancing at another time, some guy was forever crashing into me, so I let him pass, then the idiot was coming backwards into me.  Some people will never have enough floor.

Viv, when not dancing with me, was having a similar time. She says she had some of her best dances today and some of her worst.

I won the Champagne in the sorteo. I am getting lucky here as I won some earrings a few weeks back as well. We will have it next week to celebrate our despedida. Marcela announced the football score for those interested, six nil she said, no idea who scored what. A chocolate gift on departing was most welcome, it did not last us long, hunger is always present after a milonga.

We headed for The Shanghai Dragon again but stopped off for some bread on the way. If they serve nothing on the side, they cannot complain if we bring our own. (They rarely do here, and it is not uncommon for people to bring their own cakes for celebrations).  We had spring rolls as well this time, so we were well filled when we left. They do not do stout, here only porter, looked the same to me, but then I am just a Philistine, but Viv was happy with it.

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Catching up

I have been a bit remiss of late. Viv dropped her kindle and has been reading on my computer.  Then when I gave her my kindle and finally got the computer back, somehow I never got back to the blog.

So, some memorable events: We decided to change our eating out days so that we could get the colectivo back from Constitucion and carry on to Shanghai Dragon. Well, these things never go to plan. There was a demo on Rivadavia again and the 151 was not running, so we walked back and stopped at HB again. Did a share this time with one of their massive salads and a chicken sandwich. The Beer is cheaper here as well.

Another night I left my shoes again, at Imaginario. Just realized that the beer here is almost half again as expensive as HB. Time for a rethink. We found another cheap place on Lavalle as well, only 90$ar for a litre of negra. “no atmosphere” Viv says, who cares? its cheap beer.

The milongas are going well, Viv is now dancing almost non stop. This is the advantage of getting known. It is not so good at El Abrazo though, I cannot figure out why, but I cannot force the men to dance with her.

We did a return to Gricel on a Saturday afternoon. The first hour was just a repeat, Viv getting no dances, very few men, few good women. After an hour though it picked up, and became a great afternoon. We will give it another go next week, maybe come a little later.

Nuevo Chique continues to deliver. We never get bored, just exhausted. Every Tuesday and Thursday four hours of solid dancing. We did the late turn again arriving at seven and leaving when it closed. Then taking the colectivo over to Armenia for another session with Otras Aires. We have been lucky enough to see them twice this time. Whilst an entrada of 180$ar is expensive in Buenos Aires terms at a little over £6, it is a bargain in European terms.

This time we had a table of four; Viv and I, Semiha and a Dane called Fin. We confused the hell out of the waiter, asking for two litres of beer, a glass of wine, six empanadas and cannelloni. He kept trying to escape, thinking we had finished.   He really did not know what was happening when we ordered more beer. It never ceases to amaze me how little the Argentines drink, I have seen women in milongas sit there for three hours and drink nothing, and this being such a hot dusty country.

We had our annual trip out to Flores again for the meeting of the United nations, there were eleven nations represented there. Forget round table talks, if you want world peace, the leaders should all dance tango. We did drink a lot of vino today though.

Well, off out again, not one of our best days, Monday and we are late so may have trouble getting a seat.

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Dia de Mujer

Another day, another demonstration. I often wonder if people here could find some more productive way of spending their time, that said  I have never come across any violence or threats.

Nuevo Chique is reaching new heights all the time. Time was we would leave a milonga when Viv was fed up, too much sitting and not dancing. Now we leave when she has danced so much she can hardly stand. Four hours again of constant dancing, no wonder I am knackered these days. We left at eight not really ready for what was to come.

The street outside was packed even here three blocks from congress. Hipolito Yrigoyen was closed off, so there was no chance of a colectivo. Our way was completely blocked back to Plaza de Mayo so we could not reach the C line subte. Nothing for it but to head across toward Corrientes and the D line. Even here our way was not easy, people everywhere, with cameras, with banners, wearing clothing that protested about something or other. I must say my favourite was the ladies protesting about being allowed to go topless on the beaches. (use your imagination)

When we finally got to Corrientes, we were on Callao. The steps down to the subte were blocked with people. So we had to walk all the way. 4 kilometres is not normally that far for us, but it was hard going after 4 hours dancing. Time for beer I think.

We stopped at El Imaginario, not the best, but we like the courtyard. Outside without having to bear the traffic. The first beer was gone before the food arrived. The second bottle was savoured over our salad and empanadas. Two things I really like about this place; the outside space, and only one block to walk home. This is important after two litres of 6% beer and an exhausting day. I won’t need much rocking tonight.

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Expensas Hassle

You can’t make this stuff up; I need to pay my expensas again, so I head of to Banco Santander. I decided to use the one Philippe uses on Cordoba not my usual on Corrientes, thinking this would bring me luck.  I was half right, as you will see.

A small queue waited at the machine, which gave me just enough time to collect my thoughts. I tapped the screen and immediately there was a problem; it never asked the first question on my list. I crashed out and tried again, no luck so I tried to carry on. Three times I tried and despite different tactics three times I came to the point where it said  that this is not recognised.  I gave up.

So I thought why not try Corrientes, maybe I will have more luck there. I walked through the maze of streets and on the corner of Mario Bravo and Lavalle I bumped into Philippe. I think he was sent to Buenos Aires just to look after us. He agreed to come back with me and on the way he told me of his time back in France. Certainly you see more of your own home as a tour guide, Mariella had the best.

Back at the bank, I was at the wrong machine. Once pointed at the right one, my prepared list of actions worked perfectly. Philippe saves the day again.

Another great day at Nuevo Chique. It started well and just continued. I missed a couple of tandas, the curse of the grey shirt I think, but Viv was up for every one. Even when it got to seven, our usual leaving time, Viv was still up dancing. I missed a couple of ladies, I just could not get their eye, and had to do more than one tanda with some others. The grey shirt is definitely only for Fulgor from now on.

Eventually at eight we left, just before the sorteo. HB for our meal tonight. Black beer burgers and chips at a little over £17. It is worth the hassle of the expensas.

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Otra noche de Viruta

Well that went rather well. There were two counters open at the Coreo, and neither had the jobsworth haradon. This girl was a picture of efficiency, and we were out again in minutes and, again, never needed the passports.

Viv was directing me today after yesterdays failures so we then went to Bruno’s shop.  You see, it is not just me, they close one until four, so Viv’s plan immediately fell apart.  Across the road is a farmacia, Viv does not like it as you have to ask for everything, but today needs must. Try asking for Baby oil, how do you mix aciete with shampoo, but we got there in the end. Atrix was actually $15 cheaper and then we tried Nivea face cream, Viv thought she should check the price $125, that is half what it was across the road. They have a Pagofacil here as well, I may well become a regular customer.

Then to Goji for those lentejas, well it seems I should have bought the lentejon, it never said green or verde though. We got nearly everything we came out for just a quick trip to the chino and we were back home in no time. Forgot the milk, well it was not on the list. At least you cannot say it runs perfectly when Viv is in charge.

We did not go to Nuevo Chique until seven today, deciding, for a change to do the late shift. Despite the air conditioning it felt very hot in there. I think the humidity was up because of all the people. We don’t usually bother with the sorteo, but as we were here; and I won a pair of earrings. They were not my style, so I gave them to Viv. This milonga is supposed to carry on until eleven, but by ten I was running out of women to dance with. Soon there was literally not a spare woman left. Good in a way for Viv, as the eight or ten men left would then dance with her, giving her some new partners.

There was an American couple there, first day here, so I gave her a tango lesson on the almost empty floor. At quarter past ten Viv was the only woman left, a guy she had never danced with before got her up, then Dany said “what shall I play””La Cumparsita” he said, and then it was all over.

So then we joined up with Semiha and caught the 151. Going a bit further tonight, we got off at Cordoba and Armenia. We arrived at La Viruta earlier than we had intended, but as we were all hungry, it gave us time to partake of an empanada before the show. You can tell that this is a young persons place; we got dire warnings from the waiter about the empanadas being hot and not pouring too much beer in the glasses. As we have been around the block a few times, I think we can manage or food now.  Maybe the dear little snowflakes complain about burning their precious mouths.

Otras Aires actually did come on before midnight. Quite a surprise as usually midnight means about two in the morning here. Not so much danceable stuff from them tonight, but the youngsters seemed to just dance  anyway. I did get up, Otra noche de Viruta, Sin Rumbo, and of course, Milonga Sentimental. I could not sit these out. On the whole though, we were content to just sit and watch and listen.

As is often the case, our Otras Aires show was the highlight of our stay.

One thing surprised me though; numbers here were definitely down and it was much easier to dance. Still had the crazy’s leaping about the floor and taking lots of backsteps. I did have one or two crashes, but for La Viruta it was, probably my best dances. Also had a last dance with Isabel, she is off to Central America on Saturday, we did not see as much of her here as we had expected.

We walked Semiha back up Armenia and told her about the Commemorations two years ago for the Armenian Genocide. It then occurred to me, we should not be advertising around here that she is Turkish. We put her on a 140 colectivo and said goodnight. I still think she should have taken a 151 though, but no one ever takes my advice .

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