Wait, How'd I Get Here?

Buenos Aires Travel Blog

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            One of the first things I noticed about Buenos Aires was the non-conformity of all the different forms of public transportation.  From the trains to the buses to the taxis… was there ever any sort of standard?  Living in Atlanta all my life I was used to every MARTA bus and train being the same, every taxicab or police car being a Crown Vic, but in Buenos Aires there is a collection of all sorts of different vehicles from virtually every manufacturer and decade.
            Going to class one day we decided to take the subway.  The first train on Línea D looked the most modern in the sense that the paint looked alright, all the lights worked, and it didn’t shutter every time it… well, all the time actually.  Changing to Línea C we got onto a train that was noticeably older.  It smelled like old grease, vibrated its way down the track and was covered in graffiti and the like.  However upon moving to Línea A, I felt that I had stepped back into the 1920s.  This thing was made, I believe, entirely of wood and you had to CLOSE THE DOORS YOURSELF.  ???!!!  Sitting in the seats felt like riding Park Bench: The Amusement Ride and I was pretty certain that the train was incapable of stopping until I was thankfully proven wrong five harrowing times.  Differences in equipment aside, I made it to my destination in one piece (and in good time too).
            The next day we tried the bus.  Aside from the hundreds of different lines going every which way, the most interesting thing about the buses is their central paint scheme.  Oh wait, what’s that?  They don’t have one?  This bus is green… wasn’t it red yesterday?  But that one’s blue, and the one next to it is yellow.  What’s going on here?  Standing on Avenida Rivadavia you can see the Rainbow Coalition taking up 8 lanes before splitting off into every direction at the next intersection.  It’s almost like the chief of transportation for the city said “Well, we’ve got these buses… and a can of virtually every color paint in the Sherwin-Williams catalog…  Alright!  Go to it!”  I doubt the assorted color scheme was purposeful, but it certainly makes for a unique cultural highlight in my opinion.
            Taxis are the other interesting mode of transportation in BA.  While they actually decided on a uniform color scheme of black and yellow, they apparently spent their other resources cleaning out a Paris auto auction.  Renault, Peugeot, Citroen… they all have unique features we like… eh what the hell?  Let’s get ‘em all!  I tip my cap to the cab company(ies) though.  The cars don’t smell bad, they work, and they’re reasonably quiet and comfortable.  They also get you where you want to go inexpensively and in good time... when they aren’t aiming for other cabs or pedestrians that is.  Watch out!!!

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