The "para comer" thing is a take-off on an insider joke, which goes "para le-er!". You see, people here don't really beg all that much, but instead try to do something more or less useful. Like for instance there was a kid in proper socks and kilt, playing a bagpipe, which lifted a crane down the street. I kid you not, as his horror wailed, the crane slowly rose. When he stopped, it stopped. It was quite uncanny.
Also they sell things. Such as power adaptersi and cork screws and nipple clips and whatnot.
And, importantly, tarjeta lupa. Para leer. Which is a business card sized magnifying bit of plastic. Who'd want it, and what for (para leer!) is not known, and while I don't imagine three of the things sell a day in the whole twelve million strong province, nevertheless a half dozen or so entrepreneurial old gentlemen pester pedestrians at major crosswalks trying to hawk it. Awkwardly. Hawking awkwardly. Para leer.
One of them, in his later fifties, most likely an old school master by his mannerisms quite used to talking of important matters to a stonewall of ignorant indifference put up by generation upon generation of bovine pupils, tried his best to enunciate, and open his eyes wide, and impress upon a half absent audience the capital importance of the transparent tajeta. Para le-er. All this in a sotto voce mutter rather suggestive of subclinical psychopatology.
And so it has become a thing. Para le-er!
Anyway, the food in question :
You are not fit to see the glory of the steaks themselves. Besides, they were eaten. But speaking of steak, here's a counterpart to that one picture a few days ago :
And speaking of curve :
Ran into a pretty epic (and apparently Armenian run ?) oriental shop, with actual artifacts on display, as opposed to cheap Chinese imitations sort-of in the style :
It is at this point that I would like to remind the esteemed Romanian audience that there's easily a hundred sushi places in this town, which easily exceeds the total count of
cafes sad aprozare posing as cafes in that meanwhile forgotten hellhole afflicted with risible delusions of grandeur on top of all its other maculae and pockmarks.
And furthermore that while the average GDP per capita is about the same here as it is there, and while the gas here costs exactly the same as in the US, and while the cab fare is 5.5 pesos per kilometer (coming to about .50 USD or 1.6 RON) your average Argentine cab driver takes home between 12 and 16 thousand pesos after a month's 12 hours' a day work, which easily beats a thousand euros. Do you ?ii
And furthermore that butchers here actually know their craft, and so you can go like I went to the local version of Badea Cirtan here known as Mercado del Progresoand have them cut before your very eyes some nice cutlets off the bone, and they do a good job of it quickly enough. It's really a pleasure to watch a skilled craftsman at his craft, the knife so sharp it cuts on touch, the quick and precise tremolo of the wrist...
I like it here.———
- Here's a hint : a proper square screwdriver will dig right through the plastic cover on the widely available power strips, making adaptors unnecessary. Like so :
- And furthermore, that I've not yet had to actually CALL for a cab yet, like on the phone. Because they are everywhere in ample abundance, there's 45`000 cars or so, and since a license costs about 20k or thereabouts they're always on the street. They don't do the whole cab stands thing, either. Apparently Argentine cab drivers really love to work. [↩]