La Recoleta, where everything is over the top

Buenos Aires Travel Blog

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tight laneways

We headed out to find this place of interest on our own. On our first try, we criss-crossed the whole barrio, traversing this park and that in search of this famed ‘city of the dead’. Either, we’d been given the wrong directions ��" or ��" the two of us couldn’t find a windmill in a fresh cut wheat field. Probably the latter since, now that we know where it is, we can’t find a road that DOESN’T go right past it.

Entrance is free, the maps are not, but if you are interested in ever finding your way out of there, they are worth every peso. This is still an operating cemetery, so not everyone gets out alive. And many tombs were open to visiting families on the afternoon that we were there. I suppose that there is a planned layout ��" an order to the myriad of  lanes, circles and dead ends, but it is just not that easily evident.

creeping shadows
And with so much to look at, and so much that seems to be looking right back, it took little time to lose one’s bearings. The mausoleums line up down narrow lanes. They are tall, alternatively austere then ornate and then again vine-engulfed rock towers. Altogether, they are packed in tighter than ten pounds of mud in a five pound sack. The result: a towering mosaic of architectural styles, beseeching statuary, military eagles, swords, crosses and cats. Scattered tribes of feral cats abound. At one moment, as I walked down a lane so tight the sun never reached bottom, I looked up to see the sky and saw a cat in mid flight from one tomb top across to the other side. For that instant he was as much a frozen silhouette as are all those that  surround.

It is quite an experience ��" one that should be done when the sun is low in the sky and the shadow casts rise up the walls of  tombs on the adjacent lanes.

 

 

 

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tight laneways
tight laneways
creeping shadows
creeping shadows
and hidden sunshine
and hidden sunshine
lying beneath the wings
lying beneath the wings
the tears
the tears
and the prayers
and the prayers