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Acquaintance with Buenos Aires P.1

Uritsk Andrey • 8 minutes read • April 21st, 2016
Acquaintance with a new country should always begin with its capital. 

Buenos Aires 

is the capital of Argentina and the biggest city in the country. It is the large megalopolis with a population of 15 million people.

In the 

city of Buenos Aires

there are a lot of ancient monuments of architecture done in European style. However, the city significantly differs from the majority of large European megalopolises. It is not like Paris, London or even Moscow. Its atmosphere and energy reminded me of New York, but, certainly, with unique South American color. There are rectangular streets crossed by several high-speed highways, the stone jungle of skyscrapers in the center with fancy inclusions of buildings of old times and parks; a neighborhood with rich elite quarters and modest slums. A mad rhythm of the big city, beeps of cars, a pulse of business life of the country, hundreds of people hurrying somewhere - that is Buenos Aires on weekdays. On weekends the capital relaxes. Citizens play sports, go to clubs or soccer, organize picnics on park lawns, walk or just rest on benches.

As for the parks, environmental problem is a big issue in 

Buenos Aires city

. In the city, there are a lot of multi-storied buildings, considerable industrial emissions, a dense network of busy streets on which there is no restriction of the movement of cargo transport (just imagine traffic on Broadway but instead of cars there are smokestack trucks). At the same time, there are not enough parks, reservoirs, and open spaces. Buenos Aires is quite poorly aired, and there's a dense smog over the city (which is especially visible from the plane) - all this leads to an increase in lung cancer cases among citizens.

Buenos Aires, of course, is very different and multi-sided. At first, I didn't really like it, but then I somehow merged into the city, found a set of nice corners and areas in the Argentinean capital. The last day of the trip, just before departing, I spent a serene fall Sunday in Buenos Aires. There were no cars, and the people rest in parks, rolled on lawns and sunbathed. Such Buenos Aires was so pleasant that I even decided to devote a separate part of my report to it. However, first things first.

We will start our acquaintance with the city from Plasa-de-Mayo ("The May Square"). This is a symbolical heart of Buenos Aires. Earlier, during the days of the Spanish government, there was a small unpaved area with a market, where sailors and merchants met. Today it is a commercial and administrative center of Buenos Aires where numerous concerts and political meetings are held. The well-known building of the Casa Rosada (The Pink House) is the presidential palace with a bright reddish facade that dominates the area. By the way, the incumbent president of Argentina is a woman, Cristina Fernández.
A facade of the Presidential palace and a monument to Manuel Belgrano. He was a very respected Argentinean politician and general, the fighter for independence who was actively participating in revolutionary events of the beginning of the 19th century which led to the independence of Argentina from Spain. In Argentina, you can find many monuments to general Belgrano, and in Salta, even the airport is called in his honor.
This is panorama of Plasa-de-Mayo and presidential Casa Rosada Palace.
In the opposite corner of the square, there is a cathedral of the Metropolythane of the 16-18th centuries.
Maillo's Pyramid in honor of the first anniversary of May revolution of 1810 is established in the center. Thanks to this stela, the central city square of the 1580s, received its current name.
This is a bas-relief on a facade of a cathedral of the Metropolythane.
Plasa-de-Mayo is the epicenter of life of the capital and country in general. All the concerts and regular meetings that are very popular in Argentina take place there.  Chairs are carefully placed in the middle of the area. From the presidential palace, this part of the square is separated by a powerful iron fence which one should go around. Those days when I was on the square, there were some assemblies devoted to the 31st anniversary of war over Falkland islands (in Argentina they are called Malvinas) between Argentina and Great Britain. This war ended with the defeat of Argentina.
At last, there is a legislature of the province Buenos Aires in one of the corners of the May Square. It is right here in this building.
We continue walking around the city.
In Buenos Aires, as well as in whole Argentina, many unique and rare automobiles come across from time to time. Here is one of them. :)
One of the squares in the center of Buenos Aires (the Ministry of Defense is on the background).
It is a gray rainy Monday morning. On busy streets of Buenos Aires, thousands of people go to work under their umbrellas. And the picture of a typical city street is probably exactly the same. :)
Slightly aside, around Retiro, there is an English tower built from a red brick and presented to Buenos Aires in 1916 on behalf of a commune of natives of Great Britain. Across the square of St. Martin, in the middle of which a tower stands, people, covered with their umbrellas, run to work from the nearby station.
A construction of a new branch of the subway is conducted under St Martin Square.
Slightly further of St. Martin Square there is a park with a monument to the fallen soldiers (Malvinas, 1982).
It started to rain again… In the center of Buenos Aires ancient churches wonderfully fit in the modern urbanistic city landscape around them.
It is one of the typical streets of Buenos Aires that crosses the city like a rectangular lattice.
You can have a rest from noisy cars at Lavalle Square. This area is surrounded with several interesting buildings among which you may possibly distinguish two theaters, the huge Palace of Justice and the center of the legal system of Argentina. On adjacent streets, there are many attorney offices and courts where sometimes you can notice very long lines.
This nice house reminds of Flatiron building in Manhattan.
Avenida 9 (nueva) of de Julio ("July 9th avenue") is the most active city avenue, which is 140 m wide and has six driving lanes in each direction. There is a majestic obelisk erected in 1936 located in the center of the street. The major events of the history of Argentina are reflected on its four sides.
At the end of Avenida 9 on a facade of a skyscraper, you can see a monument to Evita Peron. She was an actress and the first lady of Argentina, the second wife of the president Juan Peron.
Author: Uritsk
Translated by: Vera Lungol

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