Last Dance in San Telmo

19 Jun

An example of fileteado design

Not to be so dramatic, but I think today was my last spin through the San Telmo Fair. I’ve never been a huge fan of going there because of the crowds of tourists and gimmicky feel to it. Yet once in a while I was always drawn there either by friends or a need to do something on a Sunday afternoon. My reason for going today was twofold: first, my friend Yerly was helping a friend by selling her crafts and asked me to bring her hot water for hot chocolate. Second, now that my time here is shorter I decided that I wanted to buy a souvenir or two.

I kind of already had my mind set on one of those fileteado prints, which is a very traditional painting design seen all over Buenos Aires. Once you’ve seen it, you know the kind, and it’s always associated with San Telmo or tango. I got in and found Yerly and a couple other friends, and for a while just sat around talking and drinking hot chocolate, amused by the people watching. Today was the 7th consecutive day that we’ve had no sun in Buenos Aires and it was nastily humid, foggy and drizzly. It’s sort of like Boston in February in that you go days and days without seeing the sun. I can’t remember it being this consecutive last year, but who knows.

Finally Yerly made a sale to a girl from San Francisco and I decided to get a move on before everything was wrapped up. It was getting colder and a lot of the artisans hadn’t bothered to show up today. I had luck pretty quickly and bought a little design for $50 ARS saying “Mi Cuarto”. I’ll put it up over my door when I move to Washington D.C. Next I bought myself a new bombilla to drink mate at the office because the one I have there is rusted and gross.

On the walk up to the Subte I spotted a guy selling $10 burritos and thought what the hell. They looked good but oh man, was it terrible. I think it was literally the worst burrito I’ve ever had, and though I’m a burrito nut, that should say something. It was way too much tortilla and not enough filling, and what was inside was bland and uninviting. Sigh. I’ll just have to wait until July to get a solid burrito.

There’s still the likelihood that I’ll head back to San Telmo again before I leave, but as for the fair, I think this is it. Tomorrow is a national holiday for the creation of the Argentine Flag by Manuel Belgrano, and that means no work (woohoo!). I’m going to take advantage of the day and visit the Museum of Fine Arts, and even though I visited it once a long time ago and wasn’t impressed, I figured I’d give it another shot.

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2 Responses to “Last Dance in San Telmo”

  1. Amy June 21, 2011 at 6:40 pm #

    I’m definitely going to buy more arte fileteado. Last time all I bought was a key hook that said “Aquí están… las putas llaves!” I should probably buy something more grown-up now… like Cocina.
    That’s too bad about the burrito. Reminds me of my (our) experience with street choripan. I went to an asado on Monday and oh man, was that some good choripan… still, I think I’ll give street meat another chance.

    • Jon June 21, 2011 at 7:51 pm #

      I like the key hook thing. Soon I’ll have good burritos too, don’t you worry. I am so excited for you to come here to so we can pig out and go to Siga La Vaca. I almost got it all planned out, every meal. One day we’ll make like 40 empanadas, another asado, etc etc.

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