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Old 02-21-2013, 09:11 AM   #90
porkandcorn OP
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Joined: Jan 2011
Location: Portland, Oregon
Oddometer: 296
rosario, argentina to córdoba, argentina

thursday, february 21, 2013

after waking up to some really pleasant tv news covering a man about to hang himself in his home, i had a quick 2-hour ride south to rosario, argentina.


you think your news is horrible, rosario, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr


santa fe, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr

rosario is a bit of an edgy, counter-culture college town. i had done a bit of research the night before on hostels, because i felt like meeting some people after a night alone in santa fe. "to hostel or not to hostel"... this is always the question traveling like this. you never really know what you are going to get out of the experience. you can almost always guarantee an uncomfortable nights sleep on a shit mattress. and being 6' 4", with several ruptured cervical discs and traveling by moto, this is a concern.


view from river parana, rosario, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr

but hosteling, you have a much better chance of meeting people, and enriching your experience. hotels are terrible for this. usually, i'm the oldest person in the hostel but i don't care and no one else does either. everyone thinks i'm in my early 30's, so the religious moisturizing must be working!! calgon - take me away!!!...

at the hostel che pampas, i met several really great people.


micaela, me, veronica, y tatiana, hostel ché pampas, rosario, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr


hostel ché pampas, rosario, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr


very crazy and drunk german guy, hostel ché pampas, rosario, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr

tatiana and micaela are from buenos aires, and had never been to rosario. so they adopted me for the afternoon, and we went for a walk to the monumento de las bandas (flags). rosario is among other things know as the birthplace of the argentine flag - it was first flown in rosario. it is also the birthplace of che guevara, and the current pride of the country - lionel messe of soccer fame. (he's really good.)


tatina at monumento de las bandas, rosario, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr


micaela at monumento de las bandas, rosario, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr


monumento de choripan, i'll have mine this big, rosario, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr


monumento, rosario, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr


outro monumento, rosario, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr


outside of hostel ché pampas, rosario, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr


across the street from hostel ché pampas, rosario, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr


air conditioners & motos!, rosario, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr

later that night, ricardo, the guy working at the hostel desk when i arrived, took us all out to see a reggae-cumbia band at a really cool old theatre, cine gardel. ezequiel (a native rosarino and friend of ricardo), and veronica (a traveler from munich, germany) joined us too. the theatre didn't look like much from the outside, but inside it had been made into a really interesting space, and the sound was good in the venue because of the theatrical construction.


cine gardel, rosario, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr

the venue was an homage to the revolutionary figures of south america. interestingly enough, i had learned about many of these figures on the airplane ride down to the continent, having watched a movie by oliver stone called "south of the border". the club might have made some americans uncomfortable, with political figures like fidel castro, hugo chaves, and others proudly displayed.


sueños insurgentes, cine gardel, rosario, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr


famous revolutionaries, cine gardel, rosario, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr

but this being a college town, full of young, politically active students, it seemed pretty normal to me. i really don't keep much of an opinion on political figures like this. seldom to we actually ever know the truth about any of them, even our own, from only gathering information from one side of the fence. some of them are loved, some of them are hated. maybe we know the truth, maybe we only know the lies - and in the end, it really doesn't matter. i prefer to think it is best not to make generalizations, whether it be politics, cultures, people. it's best to do your own research, look at things from all sides, and make up your own mind. most people just think what they are told, or believe what is comfortable or convenient for them at the time.

the opening band was interesting, if only slightly out of tune. they seemed like a bunch of college students who had met and said "hey, let's get the band back together!". it was a cool mix of reggae and cumbia, a musical style that comes from columbia, but which is very popular in argentina. the second band was a bit more polished, and more of a straight reggae vibe.


there for the reggae/cumbia band, cine gardel, rosario, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr

there was even an 'amway' across from the club and next to the gas station, which i thought was interesting.


amway in rosario, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr


a nice gas station outside cine gardel, rosario, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr

after the show, ezequiel, ricardo and i started walking back toward the hostel. we ran into some other people from the show who's truck was stalled in the street. we jumped in a pushed them for a block, to pop the clutch and get it going. success! our hard work earned us a ride in the back from about a mile in our direction, at which point we hopped out much closer to home.


ricardo getting a free ride, rosario, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr


ezequiel getting a free ride, rosario, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr


the car is running fine now, rosario, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr

thank you ricardo for taking me to this venue - never in a million years would i have found it, or had this interesting experience if you had not. lots of "buenas andas" (good waves, as argentines say when things are good and people are having fun.) and thanks everyone else for a great night out.

on my way out of rosario, i ran into sebastian at a gas station with his brand new KLR 650. in march, he is going to start riding to alaska from argentina. i invited him to stay at my condo in downtown portland (which also goes for anyone else on moto traveling through the area - mi casa e tu casa.) sebastian - hasta seis, siete o qualqier meses usted necesita llegar a oregon!


sebastian, future adventurer, rosario, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr

i'm currently sitting in the restaurant of the hotel amerian in the heart of downtown córdoba. it was an easy 4-hour ride from rosario - a straight shot on what might be the best chunk of pavement in argentina. perfect, and made out of 'portland', which remember, is what they call cement down here.

i really like this town. it's really organized, lots of good restaurants, bar, and cool places to hang out. the people here are muy tranquilo, and i want to stay longer - but don't know if i have enough time to be staying an extra day in all these places i like. it's a struggle, because a day here is a day i won't have later in peru, ecuador, bolivia or columbia. maybe i'll just have to come back.


cool building in córdoba, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr


big old church, córdoba, argentina by porkandcorn, on Flickr

i've started using couchsurfing.org to meet up with locals and travelers in these new cities. it's intended for finding a place to crash for a night, but the chat threads in each of the cities are a great place to connect with people when you are staying i a hotel, or just want to diversify your connections with people. so i typed in "córdoba, argentina", and put up a note saying i was here for a night or two and looking to meet up with people. pretty cool system. another american motorcyclists responded, and invited me to join him at the house of some argentines who live in a mountain town about 30 minutes up the east side of the mountains that straddle córdoba. this group of argentine motorcylist have been meeting here in villa carlos paz for 15 years, and they are having an asado (BBQ) tonight. very excited about this!
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