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Bob's Travel log

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in and on Buenos Aires, Argentina as well are neighbouring countries, Chile and Uruguay. "I've written for several Travel Adventure, Art & Antiques Magazines on and off the web and have researched Toys made in Argentina, as well as Travel Adventure

Log entries 1 - 4 of 4 

Jan 26, 2012 08:00 PM Updates on why I travel and ......

Updates on why I travel and ...... about myself, so at the moment I am researching all about
cultivating Cactus Pear Fruit, and then processing it into Wine and / or Vodka!

Vodka seems to have become an IN drink, specially if flavored from something more than potatoes or rice!

So a bit more about me, and why I travel,....... I'm know as Bob Frassinetti, Enterpreneur in the World of art, art collecting and international antiques dealer as well as free lance journalist from Argentina, Buenos Aires, working on the web, writing both for pleasure and work on art, antiques and collectibles, in and on Buenos Aires, Argentina as well are neighboring countries, Chile and Uruguay. "I've written for several Travel Adventure, Art & Antiques Magazines on and off the web and have researched Toys made here in Argentina, as well as Travel Adventure from Route 40 and Lighthouse Adventures along the Atlantic and Pacific coast, following like always the Dakar Rally from 2009, 2010,2011, and again 2012! Join me now as we are “Building a Gallery Museum in the Province of Cordoba” Real Estate Investment in Art Bricks and Land, we are and have purchased Land for cultivating Cactus Pear Fruit, and then processing it into wine and Vodka, we are Building a Gallery Museum to Exhibit local Art and Artist as well as our exclusivity Art and Toy Museum Collection ........ Travelling for Art and Antiques" in all South America and I have been on line since 1996 .

I work not only as a Travel Guide, been for many years in Lonely Planet Guide Books for Buenos Aires and Argentina,......

But as a living, Exporting Art and Antiques World Wide
Living with art and antiques and travelling the south of South Amercia. Argentina, Chile and Uruguay
San Telmo, Buenos Aires Argentina

Argentina, South America Art and Antique Travel Guide by Bob Frassinetti

Living with art and antiques and travelling the south of South Amercia. Argentina, Chile and Uruguay
La Lucila, Buenos Aires B1637AZJ

Jan 20, 2009 08:00 PM Being Argentina

Argentina is the second largest country in South America, and one of the longest in the world. The map location to the Argentine Republic is between latitude 22º and 55º. Just a bit over the Tropic of Capricorn, La Quiaca is the northernmost point of this country that extends all the way to the southernmost point of the World, Land of Fire.
It’s a beautiful country with a broad variety of climates and geographies that present themselves in a rainbow of regions throughout 2.8 million sq. meters. By means of description, a fine imagination and a brief insight we can picture those contrasts. The northwest plateaus, the lake region, the forests and glaciers in the Patagonia somehow blend in through means of distance with Argentine Mesopotamia (provinces of Entre Rios, Corrientes and Misiones) formed by low hills, pools and marshlands that are the main gate to a bushy subtropical rain forest home to the wonderful and spectacular phenomena of the Iguazu Falls. Further south: the “typical” Pampas, in the center-heart of Argentina, miles and miles of plains for agricultural and livestock activities –main income provider to the National Brut product-. Towards the southern region of our country, from the Andes to the sea, the stony plateaus of Patagonia; to one side the Atlantic coast, lined with high cliffs, and a spectacular and unique colonies of sea animals; to the other, the imponent Andes Mountains.
Argentina consists of 23 provinces plus a federal district, the City Buenos Aires house to the national government institutions. There are over 37 million Argentines; the greatest proportion lives in urban districts and almost 15 million –nearly half the entire population of our country- resides in the city of Buenos Aires.
In terms of cultural identity, the Argentine is –no question about it- a South American strongly bonded to its Hispanic roots, sometimes looking across the Atlantic to Europe, some others facing its Latino background. However, it’s true that being a country built with the combined effort of European immigrants, criollos (Spaniards born in Colonial America) and indigenous population, Argentina is a melting pot type of society. The European look of the country’s capital and the fact that statistics show that nearly 95% of the Argentine population has received elementary education might appear as signs of differentiation with the rest of Latin America. But the northwest provinces –for example- express through the blend of the colonial fine architecture and the inputs of modernity a tighter bond with the neighboring countries of Bolivia and Peru.
The official language in the Argentine Republic is Castellano Spanish, the language brought by the Spanish conqueror to the Americas during Colonial times. However, by means of use, history and customs, this Spanish has evolved into a specific tone and style, differing in accent and pronunciation between regions. The most evident trademark difference is between the Castellano Spanish spoken in the country’s capital Buenos Aires, and the rest of the country. Buenos Aires, home to Porteños –port side citizens- features a very much Italian influenced version of Spanish, while the rest of the country has a “tune” and pronunciation that could be set much more accordingly to the rest of the Latin American Spanish speaking countries. However, the basic language is Spanish and from a Spaniard to a Paraguayan, all Spanish speakers would have no problem in communicating and understanding the Argentine Castellano. For the key is that there’s a pronunciation and emphasis difference.
In terms of culture and religion, the Argentine society is open and varied. Freedom of cult is the norm in Argentina; however the official religion is Roman Catholic. Statistics present that around 92% of the Argentine population is nominally Roman Catholic however a bit less than 20% is indeed a practicing Catholic, as to Protestants , around 2% of the population and an other 2% is Jewish, the remaining other 4% practices other religions or is non religious and atheistic.
The Argentine people are very well cultivated, take much pleasure in music, reading, theatre, the movies and many other cultural expressions. Borges, his short stories and poetry, Ernesto Sabato, Julio Cortazar, Roberto Arlt, Osvaldo Soriano and Mauel Puig are some of Argentina’s wordl known writers. Carlos Gardel, Astor Piazzolla and Julio Sosa were Tango exponents around the world, and in these modern times, not only the superb Traditional Orchestra Fernandez Fierro but also electronic tango versions are kicking in. But Argentina is not all about tango –though we love it and are very proud of it- Folk northern music is outstandingly well represented by Tomas Lipan, Ricardo Vilca, Peteco Carabajal and Rally Barrionuevo. Rock n’ Roll is also an unquestioable trade mark of our youth and their passion for music, Los Redonditos de Ricota, Charly García, Bersuit Vergarabat, Divididos, Las Pelotas, La Renga, etc are just examples of a rich style. From traditional Ballet with Julio Bocca to DE la Guarda and the clown type of dance and theatre… From Xul Solar to Antonio Berni in the ArtScene. Argentina’s cultural world is rich and powerful, and it’s very much worth to explore and discover.

An other interesting side to the Argentine culture is the great pleasure taken in food and the social ritual of sharing a meal, a bite, a snack, a moment… From a mate session with a group of friend (Mate is a herbal sort of tea that is drank with a straw from a small pumpkin or wooden cup) or a Sunday asado (barbeque) or home made past lunch, to sophisticated gourmandize experiences, Argentines love good food and quality time.
Tango, great steaks and… Maradona, football –soccer- are the three passions that might summarize the “Argentinianity” or better said, the sense of being Argentine.

Bob Frassinetti

Aug 02, 2004 04:00 PM Antiquing in Buenos Aires Argentina

Some thoughts on Antiquing in Buenos Aires Argentina by Bob Frassinetti.

Rare and incredible objects, furniture, books, toys, artworks… all those antiques and collectibles you dream of can be found in Buenos Aires.
Once upon a time Buenos Aires was a very small port city with very little population surrounded by one of the world’s most fertile lands. Not too far away there were several other populations with very different traditions to the Spaniards who had populated this portside area. As the city grew and the Porteñan society evolved many Europeans chose Argentina to be their home. They immigrated with all their possessions from every corner of the old continent. This flow from Europe to Argentina first began in mid 19th century, and has never stopped till now. At the same time, as the world evolved –wars, economical possibilities, inspiration, were many of the causes that help other people chose our country as their own.
All of these new immigrants that were coming from Europe (Western and Eastern), Middle East, Asia and Africa, as well as many other Latin American countries, brought with them all kinds of objects, from paintings to mirrors and combs, from decorative items to all kinds of furniture, and so on.

This brief history of immigration in Argentina might help those that don’t know our country to understand a bit about the eclectic variety of items that can be found in this beautiful city that is Buenos Aires (specially Buenos Aires because it has always been the main gate to our great and beautiful country). Many of them were brought in immigration ships, many others were sent to these families from their homelands, some others were imported, and some other ones were the result of business among relatives who lived in their homelands and these new immigrants that were building a life in our Pampas. Those valuable family objects some times due to hard economic situations, or may be because there was no one to inherit them, have taken a path towards flea markets, auctions or antiques shops.

During the last few years there has been a huge turn in our economy, the peso (local currency) has lost much of its value in relation to the dollar and the Euro, this situation has impacted in many areas of our everyday life. On the dark side one of the biggest consequences of this economic shift has been an intense flow of goods towards all kinds of markets, in order to keep on with a certain lifestyle. Therefore many families have found themselves in a situation were they had to sell many of their family’s goods. On the bright side this new valuation of the peso has made of Argentina a more appealing place to visit for foreigners, since its much cheaper than many other big international metropolis though still shows all its splendor in its culture, art, fashion and good sense of living.

Our local flea markets, open fairs and antiques shops are open history books that show this turns in our lives.

Plus, these are excellent places to shop for those items all art lovers dream of, as well as an excellent opportunity for art dealers that wish to offer their regular clients high class items at reasonable prices.

One of the most beautiful open air markets in the city is in the historical neighborhood of San Telmo, that’s open all day during Sundays, from very early in the morning to late in the afternoon. Surrounded by countless antiques shops that open their doors to the public all week long, this fair is just beautiful, with very good quality items… Bargaining is always an interesting possibility when acquiring these type of objects, always a plus to get what you want at the price you want to.

In the outskirts of the city, the Solano fair is one outstanding market where if you have a sharp eye for antiques you can find absolutely amazing treasures. Since this fair is very much for locals you can find all from old clothes, semi used house goods, and whatever people had and needed to sell… Its always better to visit this outskirts out of the tourists path fair with a local, best if you know what you want but don’t have much time and your Spanish is not very good.

Back to the city, one excellent flea market is the Dorrego Market, in the heart of Palermo, very nearby a great restaurants area, this market has all kinds of items. Its just a matter of walking around and talking with the local people that are very kind and would gladly help you in your quest.

On the other end of the city, during the weekends there’s an other kind of flea market in Peru abajo. Located in the beautiful residential area of Acasusso you will find this fair has all kinds of decorative items and furniture, one of its specialties are chandeliers at very reasonable prices… High class and good prices, one excellent combo!

These are the most representative fairs and markets in BA. There’s nothing you can’t get, you name it, they have it… And of course, these are excellent sights when touring through the city of tango, ‘cause there are many different street shows that weekly chose those locations to show their art: tango, puppeteers, street theatre, live music, plus all kinds of local street food to enjoy during your walk, there’s no way that can go wrong!

Mar 16, 2004 08:00 PM Saint Patrick's Day in Buenos Aires .......

St Patrick's international, Saint Patrick's Day in Buenos Aires .......
Yesterday was Saint Patrick's Day
Topic: Irsish Community
St Patrick's international, Saint Patrick's Day in Buenos Aires .......

The fifth largest Irish community in the world is in Argentina, and it's important to point out that Argentina is a non-English speaking country.

Hence the more than 500,000 Irish-Argentinean families living in Argentina today are a great example in terms of traditions and cultural heritage power, surviving after over a century and a half taking in consideration the huge and inevitable language barrier.

But Argentina was, and still is an official Catholic country with freedom of cult -for all the other religions and cults-, and this was a great input for those Irish catholics who were running away from the British protestant power.

All and all, it were the broad and huge pampas who welcomed the new immigrants into a world of work in the fields and the posibility of surviving on something else than potatoes. The west frontier was still open -alike in the US- and by 1850s the sheep cattle grew at an amazing rate, together with Spanish and Italian immigrants, the Irish population that set in Argentina were helping this upcoming country to develop into a Nation.

Argentina was built on those pilars of hard work and great tolerance, our culture has always been a melting pot in which all recognize their differences and similarities, were homeland traditions are preserved and new, local ones, are included, bringing up to life a unique combination. It shall raise no eyebrows then the great deal of importance St Patrick's day has in our country, not just for Irish families, but to us all in general -Irish, French, Italian, Spanish... all Argentines in one sense... Ireland patron, St Patrick is known worldwide for his works converting the Irish to Catholicism, he then -during the 5th century AF- needn't to root off the Celtic customs, but to lead them into a broader universe of beliefs in Catholicism, his didactic means to teach Godspeed using the shamrock have become a symbol of Catholic Ireland, and throughout the world March 17th it' s the day of festivity to recall upon their Saint -who's also said to have taught the Irish how to distillate alcohol from malt and barley, hence the importance of beer in this celebration.

Yesterday on March 17th 2005, Buenos Aires's most Irish quarter in Retiro area dressed up in Green and over 60,000 people celebrated St. Patricks, not with a parade but a street party throughout 10 blocks... During the days masses were celebrated at BA's Irish churches and throughout the Buenos Aires province, were the largest part of the Irish community is located.

I was a superb party, filled with joy and excitement, loud and beautiful Irish folk music being plaid until early hours of the morning, dancing and celebrating. For the last 15 years this has been the preferential location for St Patrick 's celebration in BA, specially growing in terms of non Irish participants for the great impact of Irish culture worldwide.

But even before the great flow of immigrants came to Argentina, our history has been tied to Irish outstanding personalities .........

But did ytou know why we should celebrate Saint Patrick's Day in Argentina ?

...........such as one of our nation's forefathers Admiral William Brown born in Foxford in 1777 he was to command a squadron of seven ships with which on Saint Patrick's Day in 1841, he captured the fort of Martin Garcia, called "The Gibraltar of the La Plata".

Following many successful battles, he acted as Argentine Commissioner throughout the Independece wars and even more he's doings seatled - when at the close of the war- the Liberty of Buenos Aires by the treaty of Montevideo on October 4th 1827.

Just an example, not that we'd tell each Irishmen and women's life's in our country, for not all are as renamed as Admiral Brown, but each and every one of them with their hands and loving heart helped this country, their country, to become a nation.

Happy St. Patricks and may the luck of the Irish be yours today!

Email Bob Frassinetti. .

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