Today started with a downpour of rain, that woke me up. I got out of bed to make sure it really was rain, then went back to bed. Yes indeed they get rain in Argentina. By the time i was awake and had breakfast (including numerous pastries to choose from), the rain had stopped and it didn’t rain again all day, albeit it was a bit cold.
Today I was off to do a self guided walking tour of Cordoba. The city has interesting architecture all around. First stop was the Jesuit Crypts. I was expecting creepiness and didn’t get it. In fact I struggled to see what there was to look at. I took a photo of a huge wooden cross that had been added for decoration, and was quickly told “no saca una photografias”. So I put the camera away, and wandered around looking at old stone walls. Glad it was only 2 pesos! Besides I was also expecting robed monks, which were also conspicuously missing as well.
My next stop was the main plaza San Martin. The catedral I put a photo up yesterday of, is not so exciting during the day. Maybe it was the overcast conditions. I failed to get excited no matter what angle I tried photographing it from. Its worth noting though that construction started in 1577, however it took them 2 centuries to finish it. Even back then project managers knew how to drag projects out 🙂
I kept on walking to the convent, which was also interesting architecture wise. Also very old and has been a convent since it was completed in 1628. Unlike Mendoza and to some extent Buenos Aires, a lot of the old architecture has survived. Still its got a long way to go to compete with some central American cities I’ve visited.
And it was right here I found a nice cozy coffee shop. On the corner of Independencia and Caseros, if you are every in the neighbourhood. So far the best cappuccino yet. There alfajores though were not that great. Anyway, odds are I’ll be there again tomorrow.
I continued my walking tour south to visit the rather colourful and interestingly named “Parroquia Sagrado Corazon de Jesus de los Capuchinos”. There were no capuchinos to be seen mind you. I thought this church was also likely to be centuries old, however it was completed in 1934. Also the left hand steeple was deliberately not built to symbolize human imperfection.
I walked down to the large roundabout know as plaza espana, then along to find the canal called “La Cañada” pronounced la canyada. I’ve been a bit lazy and not used correct spanish spelling with accents, but in this case I’ve used it because the name has nothing to do with Canada and everything to do with being a canal. The canal would be lovely except for the one thing that makes a canal, a canal and that is water. Doesn’t need much but a little more would make it charming.
I followed it back north to a predetermined lunch stop. my spanish teacher recommended a restaurant called “Betos“. It appears to be a chain of stores that started in Cordoba. I walked into a charming warm restaurant. I ordered the “Parilla Diente Libre” which translated makes no sense at all but for a laugh its “Free Tooth Grill”. Its basically a mixed grill.
First up an empanada, that rivals those I ate down in El Chalten, followed by a bowl of salad and french fried with of all things mashed egg on top. I actually finished the bowl of salad in preparation for the meat and they bought me out another bowl of salad. First up i got two slices of sausage. One was very black and had a rough texture. I don ‘t want to know what was in it. The other was kind of like a chorizo. In addition I got something that looking like chicken. It was white after all, but was very chewy and tubular. Again i don’t want to know what it was, if you have a clue at all, please don’t tell me. Then I got some beef, definately beef. Some beautiful lamb as well, that was definately lamb. The last cut that I could physically eat was very thin and could have been veal, but not sure. There was more if I wanted it! Finally, desert was served which was a neopolitan ice cream slice. simple and tasty, but I still think the vanilla should be in the middle. Strawberry and chocolate just doesn’t mix in my opinion. So thanks to my teacher Sylvia for the recommendation. It was delicious and I may go back 🙂
I set off again walking past more old churches and monastries etc. It was quite late when i returned and I’ve booked onward bus tickets for saturday to travel to Salta in the north. Tomorrow, if I can find the right bus, I might head to the town of Alta Gracia to see the Che Guevara museum and a few other things.
My spanish phrase today is “Si se trata de carne, sólo comer y no hacer preguntas”. As I said i don’t want to know what the meat was I ate, but it was meat so i just ate it and didn’t ask questions.