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Friday, July 12, 2013

Fun With Uncle Ted & Aunt Kyra

We are now in our post-visitor lull after Jon's brother Ted and his girlfriend Kyra spent a wintery, rainy week with us.  As a side note, they were the last planned visitors we had before Baby Brother arrives, so it's not a total lull, just withdrawal from having so much activity packed into the last few months.

We had such a wonderful time with them!  As usual, Gretchen was the big winner as both Ted and Kyra spent lots of time playing pretend, indulging her obsession with Dora the Explorer and (by far the favorite...) taking her to Arkakao to get ice cream.  The entire 4 block walk there, Gretchen chanted "I looooove ice cream, do you love ice cream?  I just looooove ice cream!"

Instead of traveling outside of Buenos Aires, we decided to bring our visitors to some of our favorite (kid friendly) places around the city.  Lucky for me, Aunt Kyra is a photos-on-social-media-guru so I actually make some appearances in these pictures!

Giving the camera our best "cheeeeeese" faces
On Saturday, we reserved a "Dia del Campo" at estancia La Candelaria, a place we've been before for a weekend, but we opted to just stay for the day on this trip.  This is a nice option if you are looking to leave the city for a day, about 1.5 hours away from Capital, and for a set price per person (under 3 are free, 3-10 year olds are half price, full adults are AR$350 as of our visit) you have the use of the grounds for the day (10:30am - 6:00pm), a full asado lunch, a 1 hour dance show, gaucho horse games and afternoon tea.  The asado was a bit long for a 2 year old, but the show at the end was perfect to keep her attention.  The food was really good, though limited to your traditional Argentine lunch: meat, salad and bread.  Just like on the campo.  This is a great activity all year long, though rain will certainly inhibit the amount of activities available.

Strolling through the zoo
We also visited Temaiken Bioparque, and though a zoo is usually not the first activity we think of for two adults traveling without children, this one is nice enough that everyone can enjoy.  We went on the early side, which meant we were leaving the zoo right as Buenos Aires was getting going in their day.  Avoiding the crowds is crucial for this place, there is a lot of space to share, but when it's crowded, it can be pretty miserable.  

The vast majority of the zoo is fantastic, the only exception, which we learned on this visit, is the 360 degree theater and the movie that goes along with it.  We went to the 1:30 English showing of the movie and left 5 minutes into the show.  The sound is extremely loud, the video is at least 10 years old and the strange, electronic animals surrounding the theater are comparable to a Chuck E. Cheese performance.  Gretchen was not digging the loud video and dark theater, and for the rest of the week referred to it as the "bad, bad movie".  The hilarity of hearing her talk about the bad movie was worth us spending 5 minutes in the theater - but if you're visiting, be sure to skip this attraction.  
The playground at the back of the park was a new discovery for us this trip, Gretchen loved it!  It was difficult to get her back into animal-viewing mode after all of the fun she was having on the giraffe slides, tunnels through the rock, and these spider web climbing courses.  

This is easily our 5th time to Temaiken and this is the first time we realized that this playground existed. If you want a tired chico - this is a great place to wear them out!

The white tiger was another cool attraction, he was pacing in the water while we watched, then jumped in all the way and swam for a bit.  It was really neat to watch such a beautiful, enormous cat swim - not something you see every day.

We, of course, did lots of eating great food with our San Francisco-foodie visitors, showing them what we know of great food around the city.  We visited Puratierra, a favorite in Belgrano that continues to deliver high quality, unique food each and every time we're there.  There was a new restaurant on this visit, which also was fantastic, though I will discuss that one at length another time.

Thank you so much to Ted and Kyra for coming across the globe to spend time with us.  It's not often that people pay to visit you and then do things like set up your new dryer, help unpack a baby shipment filled with heavy items and cook multiple dinners.  It was pure joy to have you here, and Gretchen (along with Jon and I) miss our playmates!

1 comment:

  1. This was the best trip EVER! We had such a blast and it was the perfect mix of activity, playtime, and relaxing. It's amazing to see how well Gretchen does with both Spanish and English- however she is well aware that "chocolate" is universally understood when it comes to gelato or ice cream time.