View Olivia-Petra Coman's photos on Trover

Monday, 24 February 2014

What do I miss about Argentina?



Many-many things, because Argentina is and will always be one of my favourite destinations, one I frequently feel urges of dor* (this untranslatable Romanian word) for...
Telemaco, Nuria, Marcel, and I | © Vitor Maciel
I miss my friends! A lot. Those few days spent together linked us. Although Facebook, WhatsApp, and Skype helped us connect over the years, it’s not the same as standing face to face and having fun together, in the same place. Consequently, I’m keeping an eye on airfare deals to Buenos Aires and hope to be back there soon or – hopefully – meet them here, in Europe.
I miss the wild! I didn’t think I’d encounter such a wild Argentina. With all those preconceptions in terms of travel and the world, we’d expect Brazil to be wilder and Argentina – more Europeanised. In my opinion, it’s the other way round. Miles and miles of unspoilt forests in the north, the untouched tranquillity of Esteros del Iberá wetlands, and the remoteness that creeps into you as you get closer and closer to the Paraguayan border.
Toucan, Güira Oga Animal Rehabilitaation Centre
I miss the animals! Argentina’s a heaven for animal lovers and consequently for animal watching. Capybaras, caimans, deer, different species of monkeys and birds, coatis... not to mention the ocean fauna, which I haven’t yet had the pleasure to encounter. I found myself simply staring at these amazing creatures in wonder, for hours. It sometimes feels surreal to find yourself so close to the animals and to their natural environments... when you were once only dreaming about it while flipping through National Geographic magazine.
I miss the food and the drinks! I am not a gourmand. Not by far. But I’m a huge fan of Italian food, nonetheless. As it is said that sometimes students get better than their teachers, so did the adapted Italian food I tasted in Argentina. Ice cream combined with bananas, coconut, pineapple, or mango... Incredible salads, with vegetables served separately, Argentinean style... Or that amazing pizza fugazza (Argentinean version of focaccia --a thick airy crust topped with lots of onions), whose taste still lingers on my mind... complete with delicious pastry and the best of the best – el dulce de leche. I don’t even want to think about it... or about how a kilo of those would only suffice for two or three days.
Let’s not even talk about Argentinean wine... about a cool Shiraz savoured on hot days, about a Mango Mojito served on an eventful Saturday night, or about a maté shared with friends. Unforgettable! Did you even know they make maté ice cream?
Guaraní family in Puerto Iguazú
I miss the people and the overall vibe! Kind, cheerful, loud at times, and very outgoing, Argentineans have charmed me ever since our first encounter. Their laid-back style may seem superficial, but it is only an impression. After all, you’re in one of the Latinest [can I say that?] of all countries. Passion for living should score high on everybody’s list. It’s actually the essence of the people there, it’s what keeps them going, it’s what sometimes makes me miss the rhythm of my life there. At rovers. 
And there are smaller things I miss. Without them, my experience in Argentina wouldn’t have been such a complex, fulfilling, and happy one. So, I’m starting to daydream... I miss those long bus rides, I miss the red colour of the earth, I miss the mud walks in Carlos Pellegrini, I miss... 
   
*’Romanians claim that the word dor, sonorous and sharp like a dagger, is unknown to the other nations and speaks of a specifically Romanian dolorous ache.’ (Svetlana Boym – ‘The Future of Nostalgia’)  

No comments:

Post a Comment