With its shelves stacked with books, soda bottles and photographs from years past, La Poesía is a bar beautiful enough to truly deserve its name.
Towards the end of our time in Buenos Aires, with too many great restaurants left to visit, we went on a binge. Parrillas, pizzerías, cafés, morning, noon and night. “Jürgen”, I said during our last meal, pork grease dripping repulsively off my chin. “This is getting disgusting. Tomorrow, let’s heat something healthy.” Abuela Pan, your time had come.
I’ll remember Roger Yrurtia for two things. One: for having a last name so ridiculously intimidating that I won’t even try to pronounce it. And, two: for his gorgeous sculpture called Canto al Trabajo (“Song to Work”).
Occupying a good chunk of the block sketched out by Estados Unidos, Defensa, Carlos Calvo and Bolivar, the Mercado de San Telmo is a place which locals and tourists visit in almost equal numbers. The latter to buy antiques and souvenirs, the former for their day-to-day groceries.
When I discovered that The National, one of my favorite bands, was playing in Buenos Aires, I immediately went to their website and bought tickets. Only after the transaction was complete, did I look up the club, and my already dangerously-high levels of giddiness went off the charts. Not only was the Trastienda Club a small venue that guaranteed a great view, it was also just around the block from our San Telmo apartment.
On any day of the week, San Telmo is the best spot in Buenos Aires to go antiques-hunting. Dealers hawk everything from chandeliers to ancient books in shops which blanket the neighborhood. But the Sunday antiques market in Plaza Dorrego has become a phenomenon; all San Telmo comes out to party along with thousands of visitors in a celebration of curbside capitalism.
We walk down Calle Balcarce all the time, and have often noticed the colorful sign of Hotel Babel. After doing some research, I’ve decided this is the hotel that I would choose for a short stay in San Telmo. Not necessarily For 91 Days… for a longer stay, it’s better to rent an apartment!
San Telmo is at no loss for great restaurants, and we recently stumbled upon another: Caseros, on the street of the same name, near Parque Lezama.
Allow me to introduce Juan Carlos Balvidares, the “Caminante Argentino”, who’s been around the world, sharing his music beyond the borders of his native land. We met him in front of the Recoleta Cemetery, where he was performing. Finding out that I’m from Germany, he told me that he’s been there and also walked across the rest of the world, making money by playing his original songs on the streets. Usually, you can find him in front of the cemetery, but on Sundays you might run into him at the Antique Market in San Telmo. Visit his site to hear some of his music. And if you run into him on the streets, strike up a conversation! He’s more than happy to share his stories.