Saturday was another incredible day of Argentine culture.
No. I did not attend the Justin Beiber concert. Nor the huge Creamfields music festival that also happened last night. Hundreds and hundreds of Argentine youth and pogo do not count as experiencing the true roots of this beautiful country. Instead I learned more about the modern and historical aspects of the city.
XXII Marcha del Orgullo. Translation: Gay Pride Parade. I am ashamed to say I have yet to attend a parade in the States, but I am so happy I had the opportunity to go here. I utilized my Gender and Sexuality in Argentina course’s final project to interview some of the people participating in the day’s festivities. Plaza de Mayo was drenched with people, from transvestites to lesbian couples to heterosexual folks just as loudly in support as those who recently received the right to marry. Yup. Argentina beat us to the punch, but legalizing matriomonio igualidad in 2010(law for same-sex marriage). It is the first country in Latin America to allow same-sex marriage nationwide.
Every year the parade has a different focus. This year it was on the law for sexual education. We interviewed men and women representing different organizations, from government health or human rights programs to LGBTQ awareness. We attempted to interview a few of the transexuals dressed up for the parade, but two out of three turned us down. Those we received interviews from were very involved and knowledgeable of human rights issues the country is currently facing. We felt that we were turned down by people who were already expressing their beliefs and opinions simply by dressing up in drag or fully body painted, and were content solely being a part of the spectacle rather than the politics behind it. Their mere presence was their voice.
There was so much love and joy running throughout the streets, with huge trucks of people dancing and drinking into the night. In perfect Argentine fashion, the march that was supposed to begin at 6pm didn’t start moving until after 7pm from the Plaza to Congreso. And yes, the street vendors did sell Quilmes (popular beer) with condoms all day.
La Noche de Los Museos. One night every year, all of the museums of Buenos Aires are open to the public. FOR FREE. Bear in mind that some of these are always free, but it was still a fun museum-hopping time. We went to Museo de Bicentenario, Manzanas de Las Luces, and the Colegio de Escribanos. The lines are ridiculously long by midnight, so it became difficult to commit to more museums without losing energy with every second getting longer as we waited. We reviewed our Argentine history in the Bicentenario, which was enjoyable considering we all know WAY too much at this point. At the end of our night we enjoyed some classic tango and milonga songs performed by a trio. The final musical performance was a band of precious old men (and a pink flapper dress wearing, red heeled piano lady also verging year 80) played some Louisiana jazz tunes.
Evita (and Perón) in all their glory.
The drummer was having THE most adorable time of his life performing.
My day began by leaving my apartment building around 3:15pm and I didn’t get back up to my room until 3:20am, 12 hours later. I spent the majority of this time on my feet, walking or standing, thriving in all the excitement around me. Suffice to say my feet burned and another pair of sandals are on their last leg, but it was definitely worth procrastinating another long 1.5 spaced paper. As was this blog post. Now, back to how tango and prostitution were representations of the discrimination against women at the end of the 19th century in Buenos Aires.