Thursday, November 30, 2006
There is a problem with the design-- not the style, but the material. The plastic isn't heat resistant, or at least it isn't fireproof. I'm not sure if the fire comes from cigarettes accidently discarded in bins full of paper, or if the fire comes from deliberate vandalism, but as you can see in the second photo, the side of a bin melted, leaving a big hole.
This trash bin is still in service, and people continue to use it. Despite the hole, it more or less functions as intended.
This one doesn't. This is all that's left of a trash bin that completely melted. At first, I didn't even recognize what it had been.
Wednesday, November 29, 2006
Tuesday, November 28, 2006
We went to Barrio Muñoz this morning to do a little shopping. It's a neighborhood full of shops selling all kinds of stuff-- mostly inexpensive products imported from China. It's said to have the lowest prices in Montevideo. Nearly all the stores were painted in bright colors and the streets were bustling with people. Most of the stores were very small but packed with a variety of products: kitchen gadgets, cameras, shoes, picture frames, appliances, vases, candles, beer mugs, plates, batteries, candy, Christmas lights, and more, all in a space about the size of my bedroom. A few stores were bigger, direct importers. I think the street vendors and small shops buy their goods there. We bought a hat & it was a fairly complicated process: first the sale had to be more than 100 pesos, then pay at a window and then wait (a while) for the hat to appear from upstairs (which seems to be a giant storeroom.) I get the feeling the neighborhood is a little problematic. A truck driver warned us to move our car, when we first parked because it would get robbed or the windows would be broken. We moved it.
Monday, November 27, 2006
I'd seen kiteboarders in Montevideo earlier, but this is the first time I'd seen them on Pocitos beach.
Sunday, November 26, 2006
address: Maldonado 2182, Montevideo, UY
For reservations call: 402-7868
The CD is a tribute to the great jazz singers like Bessie Smith, Billie Holiday, Edith Piaf and Ella Fitzgerald, and others.
A short video from her earlier show is available in this post.
Saturday, November 25, 2006
Club de Pesca
Tito cooked a wonderful lunch for about a dozen guys. He made matambre a la leche. It was made with the same meat as this matambre but it wasn't rolled with vegetables. For this dish, the meat was boiled until tender, then baked on a cookie sheet with milk and grated cheese. It was great.
Friday, November 24, 2006
Christmas items appeared in the local stores around Halloween and the big retailers have elaborate displays. If it weren't for the hot weather, it'd feel like Christmas. I know this shows my northern upbringing, but the weather makes me feel like it's almost the Fourth of July. I've heard the fireworks on Christmas are outstanding, so perhaps I'm not that far off base.
Thursday, November 23, 2006
Wednesday, November 22, 2006
The school has one classroom and seven students, across all the elementary grades. The classroom has several tables, two computers, a timeline of Uruguay's history stretched across the room, and other student projects on display. In addition to the classroom, the school has two bathrooms, a large kitchen, and a bedroom for the teacher. There were two ostrich eggs (ñandú) on the kitchen table. Outside, there were chickens, a cat, and a lamb. The students' smocks and ties hung from hooks in the hallway.
Tuesday, November 21, 2006
Gauchos at work
The Estancia Las Cecilias raises cattle and sheep.
Watch a short video of the gauchos weighing sheep:
Camels on the Rambla
Yesterday afternoon, they were filming this camel. A life-sized camel dummy sprawled on the sidewalk off-camera and a nearby truck held a spare camel. The crew is back this morning, but I haven't seen the camels.
Monday, November 20, 2006
Sunday, November 19, 2006
Estancia Las Cecilias
Wednesday, November 15, 2006
Tuesday, November 14, 2006
See a video of the rosaleda.
Monday, November 13, 2006
Atlántida also has a small zoo. Shown here are a ñandu and a carpincho, both native to Uruguay.
Sunday, November 12, 2006
The Nike 10K was another heavily promoted event in Montevideo this weekend. The race was along the Rambla, so we could watch from our balcony. There were a lot of runners; it must have taken an hour for them to all pass.
Fiesta de la X
I went to the Fiesta for a few hours. (Sorry, no pictures from the event -- cameras were prohibited.) There were rock bands on several stages, electronica on another, folk music, hip hop, etc. My favorite was a candombe drum troupe. The concert lasted all night, but I didn't.
Saturday, November 11, 2006
Lunch in Brazil
Chuy is Uruguayan and Chuí is Brazilian. The two names describe one town straddling the border. There are no formalities to cross the frontier in Chuy, just walk across the street and you're in Brazil. The border itself runs between the parked cars. On the Brazilian side, the benches are painted green and yellow. In Uruguay, they're blue.
Shopping is Chuy's attraction. Right now, the exchange rate favors Brazilian shoppers and they cross to Uruguay to buy cheap goods. The weak peso makes it expensive for Uruguayans to shop in Brazil, so the stores on that side are struggling. Brazil's pharmacies do sell inexpensive generics.
Friday, November 10, 2006
These books aren't about Uruguay, but they are interesting. I built the list to help in a charitable effort of Seth Godin's blog
Here's the one day challenge: go build a holiday lens [and] have all the royalties earmarked for Room to Read. If every reader of this blog and every lensmaster on Squidoo builds just one lens today, we'll create tens of thousands of lenses, each donating money every day to build new schools. It only takes a few minutes...
More from Punta del Diablo
And a set of photos at Flickr
update: Or see the photos at Facebook, which seems to work better.
Punta del Este
Thursday, November 09, 2006
Parque Nacional Santa Teresa
Santa Teresa National Park is just a few kilometers north of Punta del Diablo. The fortress is its best known feature, but it also offers gorgeous beaches, big campgrounds, and rental cabins. There are rose gardens, historic artifacts, and a greenhouse for tropical plants. The fort dates back to colonial times and has been completely restored.
Wednesday, November 08, 2006
Pescadores de Punta del Diablo
Punta del Diablo was founded as a fishing village and, for decades, there was no access by road. The fisherman conserved their catch as bacalao de tiburon, dried shark meat. Fisherman still leave the beach each morning to catch sharks, shrimp, and fish. They haul their boats out of the surf using hand-cranked winches.
I can't imagine going out to sea day after day, winter and summer, in a little boat, then hauling it all the way up the beach to unload it. It's such hard work... but very interesting to watch and the location is beautiful. On top of that, while I was watching the fishing boats, a whale surfaced in the bay.
See a video of the process here:
Tuesday, November 07, 2006
A few pictures from Punta del Diablo
Click on the link for a little slide show of photos from Punta del Diablo
Monday, November 06, 2006
Punta del Diablo
Punta del Diablo is a fishing village in a setting so beautiful that it’s hard to describe. I complained that my Spanish vocabulary was too limited, but I’m not sure I can do it justice in English either. I did take a lot of photos and will put some online in the next few days.
Punta del Diablo has two main beaches, framed by huge rocks sculpted by the sea. One beach is for the fishing boats and the other is favored by surfers. Vendors sell necklaces made of shark vertebrae from a pier along the fishing beach. There are a few little stores, restaurants, and hotels but no big commercial operations. Many of the rental places are 4 small houses on a single lot. Summer is the busy season when the ranchos and casitas fill with people getting away from the city. It's spring, now, and much quieter. In winter, there are very few people there.
I went with Tito and 3 friends. We walked on the beach, enjoyed great camaraderie, and ate like kings. I had a great time.
Thursday, November 02, 2006
Wednesday, November 01, 2006
In the news
CIUDAD BARRIOS, El Salvador -- This lively mountain town survives on money sent from its sons and daughters living in the U.S. On days payments arrive, lines at the local credit union can reach 150 deep. The crowds then hail motorcycle taxis and head for the town's open-air market to stock up on food and clothing, or browse tiny appliance stores stuffed with blaring televisions and stereos.
It's the sort of scene that many development economists believe could transform some of the world's most impoverished regions, by putting cash directly in the pockets of the poor. With tens of millions of migrants around the globe sending remittances home, the flood of money has grown immense -- $167 billion last year, according to the World Bank.
In recent years, her work has focused on the economics of remittances in various countries. Currently, she is researching remittances to Uruguay with colleages at the Universidad de Montevideo, with support from the Fulbright Scholar Program.
Before buying the car, an escribana did a historia for it, which is something like a title search. (Escribano is translated as notary public, but they seem more like paralegals.) The license plate belongs to the car, so we didn't need to change that. We did get the libreta, which is like an ID card for the car and the matricula which is like the registration.
There are a lot of interesting cars on the streets here (see this post), but we didn't look at any antiques.
update:I was wrong about the gas costs-- I never put in more than 1000 pesos ($40 US) to fill the tank, even when gas prices increased.
- June 2006
- July 2006
- August 2006
- September 2006
- October 2006
- November 2006
- December 2006
- January 2007
- February 2007
- March 2007
- April 2007
- May 2007
- June 2007
- July 2007
- August 2007
- September 2007
- October 2007
- February 2008
- March 2008
- April 2008
- May 2008
- July 2008
- August 2008
- September 2008
- October 2008
- February 2009
- April 2009
- July 2009
- December 2009
- April 2010
- February 2012