Monday, July 21, 2008

El Tigre

Saturday morning, we had an all-you-can-eat lunch in this casino in El Tigre which used to be called the Tigre Hotel until probably some casino by that same name opened up in Europe or Canada or Vegas, and now it´s called the Trilenium. Just like in the US, in Argentina you have to be 21 to even get inside a casino. Or maybe the age is 18. No one gave straight answers on that. In any case, Brenda and I were told to lie low, Brenda because she´s under 21 and looks it, me because even though I am 21, I could easily pass for 16 if I tried. So we stood in the middle of the group, and I gave Brenda my shades to make her look older, because at least I was of age even if I didn´t look it. We got into the buffet just fine though. I doubt any place outside the US is about to turn down a group of 16 people just because a few of them are underage, because that´s a lot of business lost.

It was a great buffet, with made to order pasta, etc. Dessert, though, was the highlight of the meal. In most buffets, dessert is mediocre, but here I got to try tiramisu, chocolate mousse, flan, fruit salad with whipped cream and dulce de leche and pears marinated in merlot. I needed a lot of boldo tea to wash that down (boldo is an herb from the Andes that has digestive properties just like peppermint and spearmint).

There´s this swing in El Tigre, a ride that starts off with a drop of a couple hundred feet. Alejandro´s done it and he said it was an amazing adrenaline rush, and I´d have loved to try it, but that´s best to do before lunch. I did not digest the meal in time to do that ride. Qué lástima.
El Tigre is famous for wicker furniture, and it didn´t occur to me to take pictures of all the wicker furniture stores, and I can´t very well bring any back as souvenirs, so unfortunately I´ve got nothing.

The artisan fair was much more provincial than the one in Recoleta, obviously. They were selling mostly windchimes and things that smelled - bath salts, incense, room sprays, body sprays, linen sprays...

The train ride back was much better than the train ride there, not least because we were lurking by the edge of the platform, so when the train door opened, we could be the first ones on it and get seats. It was also less crowded. The journey there was hell, even though Brenda and I had successfully gotten seats. We were packed like sardines, and most of the group was forced to stand, and because we were bundled up for the frigid air outside, we sweat like pigs inside because it was so crowded.

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