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An Argentinian day in Rosario

When I arrived in Rosario I didn't have any idea about what to expect, as usual. I prefer not to have a guide book or read about the touristic attractions and let the opportunities come to me.
My first stop was at a couchsurfer's house, I met Eduardo. A nice middle class argentinian guy who introduced me to the local culture.
On the menu of this typical day: the Asado. Asado is actually a bbq. Argentinians are very proud of this "culinary specialty", but it is basically just a huge amount of beef they throw on the grill and cook perfectly. What looks awkward to me is that they hardly eat any vegetable or side dish with it. Purely carnivore...

On the drink list you can't miss the Mate (pronounce Matay). It's a very unique tradition of Argentina spread a bit over south of Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay. Mate is an herb they consume as a tea, with hot water. But it's more than a beverage here, it's a way of living, a symbol of conviviality, and an addictive habit. At the moment I crossed the Argentinian border, I've been puzzled at the sight of so many people walking around with a thermos tucked under one arm, sucking on a metal pipe stuck into a gourd with a silver rim. Obviously I had to try. Eduardo prepared one for us. But as soon as I sip into the famous gourd I cough of disgust, stroke by the bitter, earthy and grassy tasting... My host tried to hide his disappointment of my dislike and passed the mate to his friend. But he was decided to have me liking this Argentinian addiction, so he went off to the kitchen to prepare a "terere". "This one you'll like it, you'll see!" he says determined. It consists of the same herb prepared with orange juice on a bed of ice, the orange juice (very sweet) compensate the bitterness of the herb, making it much more drinkable. I was afraid of not liking it, Eduardo was so eager of convincing me, I didn't want to disappoint him too much... Thankfully I could drink it...
Later on that day, the news announce the death of Nestor Kirshner, the former president who was suspected of governing through his wife, elected in 2007. It's a big thing, the whole country is shocked and 3 days of mourning are proclaimed. It gives us the start of the long discussion on Argentina's history and politics.
A perfect argentinian day: asado, mate, terere, and political discussion with a cute argentinian guy. :)


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About me

About me

Travelling to learn, learning to travel.