A morning spent with dead people.
Buenos Aires Travel Blog› entry 219 of 251 › view all entries
September 3rd, 2008 – by: cmgervais
Still have a nasty cold and cough, but felt a little cabin feverish today, so Steve and I decided to check out the nearby Recoleta Cemetery. It was chilly out [45F (7C)!], and we had only the clothes we wore on the flight from London (hopefully our luggage will come tonight). I had no coat at all, so Steve gave me his jacket and braved the cold in short sleeves. Then off we went to meet the dead of Buenos Aires.
On the way we saw a guy walking a big group of dogs, something we soon learned is a pretty common sight here. Some of the dog walkers really had their hands full with their poodles and terriers, and sometimes didn’t appear to like their charges very much.
I also noticed a number of very well dressed seniors walking individually or with a helper or nurse. Advanced age had not prevented either the ladies or gentlemen from being impeccably groomed. I watched one ancient man make slow progress down the street. He leaned heavily on his carved wood cane, his movement a mere shuffle. Yet he still seemed so dignified in his wool coat, old-fashioned cap, and polished leather shoes. Not one of his five hairs was out of place. I hope to look that good when I am old, but since I don’t even look that good now, there’s really no hope for me there. I’ll be wearing sweat pants and sneakers, hair sticking up like a madwoman.
Anyway, we finally got to the cemetery entrance, after making nearly a complete circle around the place trying to get in. The entrance gate is ornate and columned, and it’s clear right away that this is no ordinary coffin-in-the-ground-with-a-simple-tombstone cemetery. It is a veritable city of side-by-side mausoleums, ornate stone buildings topped with carved angels and crosses. Many of the tombs had glass doors, so we could peek in to see the coffins resting on shelves inside! Some had fresh flowers, but many others were in complete disrepair, with broken glass and litter filling the interior. We saw a group of people surrounding a rather nondescript, smallish building, and there we discovered Evita Peron and her family. I kept trying to take photos, and was continually vexed by my super-duper long lens. I couldn’t get back far enough! (My regular lens is in my lost luggage so I had to use my zoom for today.)
The place was huge and we spent a long time wandering through the alleys, peeking in at the dead. After enough time here, I was chilled to the bone and so tired. So we went back to the apartment where I buried myself in a book and was soon dead to the world myself.
Join TravBuddy to leave comments, meet new friends and share travel tips!