Tango is a social dance and a musical genre that originated in Argentina and Uruguay.
11.28.2007 - 11.28.2007
Another day with no "down time." We were up and out after breakfast to head to the Tigre delta, just north of Buenos Aires. Our bus left at the height of morning rush hour, so the 18 mile drive took about an hour. That meant we needed to take a "technical" stop halfway (because there was no biffy on the bus). Just to make that stop more interesting, we parked in front of an ice cream parlor. Well, people often say you shouldn't drink before noon, but no one said you can't have some chocolate chip gelato! So we did.
Once we got to the town of Tigre, we were loaded on to a long, wooden passenger boat. The Tigre delta* is composed of many small islands formed by the silt deposited where the Parana River enters the Rio de la Plata. It is a haven for city people to build their weekend "cabins." A large number of people actually live there all year round as well, which accounts for the river taxis, river school buses, a river postal office, and even a floating river grocery store! We cruised past many homes — large and small, the elementary and high schools, an amusement park, and bars and restaurants.
Included in our trip was lunch at the Gato Blanco ("White Cat"). We sat on the veranda with the folks from Wisconsin (all of them are presently warm and accounted for...) and we had a nice chat. For you Irish Fest goers, one couple has a daughter who dances with a Milwaukee dance school.
On the return trip, some of our group got off the bus downtown to shop at 3 pm.
We, on the other hand, continued back to our room for a bit of a nap. ..because at 5 pm we jumped back on the bus and headed for El Viejo Almacen for TANGO. The shows here involve traditional Argentine-style tango Before we watched, we had to learn — so everyone had a 1 hour tango lesson (champagne was served for those who needed some liquid courage). Then we walked across the street for a 3 course dinner at the restaurant. After dinner, it was back to the dance hall to watch a 2 hour show of dancing, Latin and South American music, and tango ballads. It was long day... enough to tire us out and send us directly to bed upon our return.
We have to rest up for tomorrow!
- More on the Tigre Delta: The Parana River delta is a 14,000 square kilometer area where thousands of islands and inlets, water channels, rivers and backwaters form a sub-tropical wonderland about twenty miles northeast of Buenos Aires. The Parana is South America's second longest river, after the Amazon. It originates in southeastern Brazil at Paraiba and Grande Rivers, flows 1,600 miles (2,570 km) through Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay and when it joins the Uruguay River to form Rio de la Plata estuary, the delta region is known as Tigre. Long before explorers and settlers came into the delta region, the Yaguarete, the American jaguar or tiger, tigre made this area its habitat. Along with mosquitoes, birds, fish, and abundant vegetation, the Yaguarete was a common sight. It attacked humans and cattle and was rightly feared. Now almost extinct, the yaguarete is a national treasure and gives its fierce name and reputation to an area now famous for rest and relaxation.