Inside one of the rooms in the Mosque
For those of you who know me, you know that once I give
myself a mission, thereâ€™s no going back until I accomplish that feat. Such is
the case with going on a tour of the beautiful mosque by our apartment. With
last weekâ€™s tragic, tragic episode of getting played when trying to go on the
tour, I was determined that today would be the day that we went on the tour.
After getting ready, Luqman and I made our way to the mosque
with 10 minutes to spare before the start of the tour. There were a good number
of people who were waiting to go on the tour as well. When we entered the
grounds, a guard asked for my name and asked to see some identification. I
showed him mine and he examined it for a good bit. However, he didnâ€™t even ask
for Luqmanâ€™s. Hmmâ€¦.
We made our way to a main room in which there were posters in
English and Spanish that talked about some important Muslim principles and
A fountain inside the Mosque's compound
A man in some â€śtightâ€ť jeans, as Luqman called them, and a sweater
walked in to the room and began lecturing. Unfortunately, he spoke absolutely
no English and thus talked only in Spanish. However, this was not that bad
because I could understand him. The bad part was that he would not stop pacing!
Now when I say, he was pacing, I mean he was pacing at such an incessant rate that
I seriously felt an anxiety attack coming on. It was so hard for me to enjoy
the tour because the tour guide was making me so nervous. This was very
regrettable because the mosque and the grounds were amazing. I was taken aback
by the gorgeous dĂ©cor and stunning architecture. But again, the pacing and not
being able to fully understand the guard was severely hampering our experience.
Finally, Luq and I decided that we had enough and took the
subway back to the apartment.
The extra rich dessert that I could not finish
We casually hung around the apartment and the
surrounding area for the next couple of hours. Then I called Deona to make
dinner plans to meet at an Indian restaurant that I had loved when I had
visited Buenos Aires
We arrived at Kathmandu and
the guys as well as Deona were impressed with the dĂ©cor. Our waiter was
interesting. He was clearly of European descent but had an eerie color to his
skin. After taking a closer look at him, I attributed it to either a horrible
self tanner or that he had spent way too much time in the tanning salon. I told
my observations to Deona who tried to defend his leathery skin by telling me
that he probably just wanted people to think he was Indian. Anyways, we ordered
a couple of dishes to share which included Lamb Biryani, dal, chicken tiki
masala, and samosas.
Brandon enjoying some dessert at Meridian 58
We also drank lassi, which is a yogurt based drink. Our
food was delicious and great, although I wished it was spicier. I asked the
waiter to flavor the food with the hottest spice they had, but I was
disappointed to find out that their â€śIndian hotâ€ť flavor was not all that spicy.
After our tasty and very filling meal, we decided that we
wanted to spend the rest of the evening low-key. Thus, we went on a search for
a cafĂ©. We walked around Palermo
but couldnâ€™t really find a cafĂ© in the area. Then I remembered a cafĂ©/bar that
I had enjoyed a lot when I studied in Buenos Aires
last year, called Meridian
58. We walked to the cafĂ© and settled upstairs in the corner with some couches.
Luq and Deona
We enjoyed some very rich desserts and drank some cappuccinos. All of us were
all very impressed by the chic and relaxing atmosphere. For those of you who are from Atlanta, Meridian 58 had a very Cafe Intermezzo feel to it.
I had a surreal moment
during the conversation when it really hit me that I was in Buenos
Aires, on the other side of the equator, thousands of miles away
drinking coffee with my friends! I could not believe that this was really
happening. After I processed that thought, I became very grateful and felt so
lucky that I was sharing my South American experiences with such good friends.
We dropped Deona off at her apartment after spending a couple
of hours in Meridian
58 and then made our way back to our apartment. We all headed to bed relatively
early, but then all sporadically woke up a couple hours later. Brandon woke up first and walked into the
living room and started watching television. Then I woke up next because I
heard the tv come on. I made my way into the living room to join Brandon and discovered
that there had been a riot at the Constitution subway station. Apparently, the
denizens of Buenos Aires,
infuriated and frustrated at the lack of efficiency, rebelled at started a riot
at the station. Police and armed guards had to be called in to quell the crowd.
There were some injuries but no deaths reported. I woke up Luqman to watch the
news with us and he jumped from bed to see what the ruckus was all about. After
discussing citizensâ€™ rights and the government for a while, we all went back to
bed hoping that the violence would not repeat itself tomorrow. I especially
hoped that everything would be okay because Wednesday was my birthday and I
didnâ€™t want the day to start off in a negative manner. I went to bed with my
fingers crossed that tomorrow would start off on a good note.