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2013-10-11_Uruguay
  • No KMZ (Google Earth) for this traveldiary.
Departure
Awoke at 7am, bathing and breakfast. It's similar to the Argentine ones: jam, sliced bread, butter, coffee or tea - minus dulce de leche.
d03_01 (2013-10-13 07:18:04) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_02 (2013-10-13 07:45:11) -- show location on Google Maps
Walking to the bus terminal. Shot that kind of picture too but didn't publish it: the bus hides the signs of the construction of the skyscraper in the back. Preparing for the season.
d03_03 (2013-10-13 07:46:55) -- show location on Google Maps
The terminal.
d03_04 (2013-10-13 07:50:02) -- show location on Google Maps
The horrific accident from the front page of the Comfortzone Magazine. 18+

An important player of the landscape in the city is The Hand of Punta del Este sculpture. The Chilean Mario Irarrázabal created it in 1982. The story of the hand isn't extensive but talking: on the summer of 1982 Irarrázabal arrived to Punta del Este to enter the annual International Meeting of Modern Sculpture in the Open Air contest but on the dedicated public square there was no more free space for him. So Irarrázabal decided to walk to the beach and started to work there: the water inspired him and by the fingers reaching to the skies he wanted to warn the swimmers that the La Barra shore is more dangerous, it's better for the surfers - the Solanas beach is safer for those who just want to fool around in the water.

In spite of the summer heat and the vigorous winds he had to fight with, it took only 6 days for him to finish the work (what's made of concrete and plastic reinforced with steel).
d03_05 (2013-10-13 07:51:48) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_06 (2013-10-13 07:53:06) -- show location on Google Maps
Even it's 17 degrees outside but luckily this didn't hamper our path, so we right in time left to Montevideo.
d03_07 (2013-10-13 08:00:46) -- show location on Google Maps
Bus ride to Montevideo
Traveller tip: the tickets with even numbers are the right side of the bus so anyone wishes to see the Río de la Plata, ask a ticket with odd number.

The weather was gray and cloudy, grayness was under the clouds and not to mention the clouds only emphasized the gray fog because the impenetrable clouds gliding above didn't let through an inch of sunlight.
d03_08 (2013-10-13 08:34:07) -- show location on Google Maps
One can recommend this pilot school because if they landed that plane there, I don't have any doubts.

Okay, this was a spent joke. I'm sure they only lifted the plane there with a crane.
d03_09 (2013-10-13 09:10:22) -- show location on Google Maps
The international Carrasco airport in Montevideo.
d03_10 (2013-10-13 09:47:35) -- show location on Google Maps
Arrival to Montevideo
The fourth dimension, geometry and spacetime. How does this get to the South Pole? Good question but all the four subjects are indeed interesting!
d03_11 (2013-10-13 09:56:52) -- show location on Google Maps
The first sexshop experience of my life could have gone to Uruguay. Unfortunately the picture is blurred because I shot it underway and there wasn't time for a stop.
d03_12 (2013-10-13 10:04:22) -- show location on Google Maps
From the terminal to the accommodation
At 10:10am the bus arrived and as the intrinsic follower of the varieties I strongly punched into the face of the boring weekdays: I bought the tomorrow's ticket to Colonia for a mere 258UYU but I chose the COT company!

I was helped at the information counter with various maps and the smarty that I can take the bus 183 to the accommodation.

What finally didn't happen because according to the maps only a 30-40 minutes walk was ahead of me and this couldn't scare away the only backpack+medium sized backpack combo on ze body. I saw a few exchange shops on the way with 1.7 conversion rates.

Finally and successfully arrived and checked in. Had a discussion with the employee what could one do in Montevideo on a 13rd of Sunday in October - Not too much, the city is quiet. (I didn't lost my temper because of this since next Tuesday I'll visit an another random South American crowded megacity). Finally we narrowed down the market and the Old Town as the possible points of interest.
d03_13 (2013-10-13 11:21:56) -- show location on Google Maps
A room with a view.
d03_14 (2013-10-13 11:22:00) -- show location on Google Maps
Around noon I left to my itinerary. I cannot tell it's necessary to do such comparisons since it's not a contest neither have any feeling to lightly dance around national identities. But with a static content, I can totally second that fact wandering mouthwise, although mate is the most famous identity of Argentina yet the Uruguayans drink way more. My short walk in Montevideo introduced me at least 1 people out of 3 who carried a thermos with hot water under the armpit or on the shoulder in leather case. The mate in the hand with the tea, the metallic sparkling of the bombilla, aka the straw.
d03_15 (2013-10-13 12:02:12) -- show location on Google Maps
University of the Republic, Faculty of Architecture.
d03_16 (2013-10-13 12:08:20) -- show location on Google Maps
Not based on the model photo but in general I can assure anyone that among the Uruguayan girls too are a lot of hot girls. I attest.
d03_17 (2013-10-13 12:09:11) -- show location on Google Maps
Turning to west on the Canelones street.
d03_18 (2013-10-13 12:16:26) -- show location on Google Maps
If anyone is interested in a real Apple and Mac course, let me know and I can send over the exact direction.
d03_19 (2013-10-13 12:24:09) -- show location on Google Maps
There's even a church next to the school.
d03_20 (2013-10-13 12:25:16) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_21 (2013-10-13 12:28:21) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_22 (2013-10-13 12:30:06) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_23 (2013-10-13 12:30:52) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_24 (2013-10-13 12:31:15) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_25 (2013-10-13 12:31:58) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_26 (2013-10-13 12:36:08) -- show location on Google Maps
The church number three of Christian Sciences in Montevideo.
d03_27 (2013-10-13 12:43:24) -- show location on Google Maps
Feriado, market. I cannot quite say that during travelling I would need cabbage, homespun bags or 2 kilo of potatoes but I strolled around and came out they offer many other things too.
d03_28 (2013-10-13 12:49:49) -- show location on Google Maps
And then and there, probably seeing a hidden counter of the Uruguayan market did I understand an another important South American essence.

Random pairing, jin and jang, black and white, fire and water, eternal battle?

One visibly vanishes more than the other?
d03_29 (2013-10-13 12:54:21) -- show location on Google Maps
Jan Yager and Jorge Bafico.
d03_30 (2013-10-13 12:56:25) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_31 (2013-10-13 12:58:31) -- show location on Google Maps
I didn't ask the price but My Little Pony DVD was inside.
d03_32 (2013-10-13 13:01:32) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_33 (2013-10-13 13:07:20) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_34 (2013-10-13 13:08:00) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_35 (2013-10-13 13:08:58) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_36 (2013-10-13 13:15:11) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_37 (2013-10-13 13:16:22) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_38 (2013-10-13 13:19:12) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_39 (2013-10-13 13:24:11) -- show location on Google Maps
If I hadn't turned to the Río Negro street, probably for my later dismay I would unknowingly missed the Central station named after General Artigas.

Its history was preceded by two other stations: the first one was inaugurated on the 16th of July 1871 on the corner of Galícia and Río Negro. The second building was constructed one street away to north, on the corner of La Paz and Río Negro and it's delivery happened in 1874.

Unfortunately due to a fire the latter building was destroyed on the 14th of December 1894 and this is how we arrive to the station still can be seen nowadays. The building was designed by the Italian architect Luigi Andreoni and was inaugurated on the 15th of July in 1897. The station served its cause for the passengers until the 2nd of January 1988: from this day they started to use the building for various exhibitions - while the original offices kept remained and the tracks and equipment still were used to load the cargo or move the train cars. Among the tracks even Iron Maiden (1992) and the Duran Duran (1993) gave a show.

In 1991 for a mere 5 years until 1996 the passenger service was restored. In 1996 the cargo department was sold to the ANTEL (a telecommunication company, owned by the state), thus the owners lost a major income and couldn't pay more the rental of the area. In 1989 the station was sold to the Uruguayan Mortgage Bank and under the palm of the Phoenix Plan they wanted to turn the location into a shopping mall.

Finally this didn't happen but 500 meters to north from the old building the construction of a new station started in 1999 but its opening on the 1st of March in 2001 was delayed because of various architectural mistakes. Thus on the course of uncertainty and financial difficulties the old station from this day is remaining unused and abandoned.

There were some initiatives in 2008 to repair the car moving equipment (from and to the harbour) but the future so far is pending. Nonetheless the building has the public support, a group of citizens started to collect signatures and in the February of 2009 handed over 7,000 signatures to the authorities to save the building. We'll see where they'll get because although financial matters prioritize the world but one perhaps shouldn't leave historical memories to rot.

Or maybe it's only me who have romantic gaucho-western imagination when those trains ran across the continent in the 19th century. :)
d03_40 (2013-10-13 13:25:44) -- show location on Google Maps
Stroll next to the port.
d03_41 (2013-10-13 13:35:09) -- show location on Google Maps
On a local bus terminal
The pulsating contest was full of excitement, hot and tight. The participants headed forward next to each other, with overflowing joy in the stream of the events. But only one of them could win.

This year the prize of The Kinkiest Name for a Bus Company goes to Montevideo! Congratulations to the team!
d03_42 (2013-10-13 13:37:38) -- show location on Google Maps
But let's not stop just here. The picture wasn't motivated by 18+ reasons, I only spotted the differences of the Spanish language. In the Spanish-Spanish the singular second possession (i.e.: yours, you have) is tienes. The Spanish of Buenos Aires on the contrary uses the tenés word - but apparently this usage can be found in Montevideo too.

Easy Casanova. The rein is in your hand.
d03_43 (2013-10-13 13:39:39) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_44 (2013-10-13 13:43:10) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_45 (2013-10-13 13:48:35) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_46 (2013-10-13 13:49:49) -- show location on Google Maps
That kind of picture was shot too. But didn't publish it, was qualified as improper and impolite.

The sculpture depicts Hernando Arias de Saveedra, shortly Hernandarias gentleman. What one should know about him is he was the first governor who was born already in the New World (in Asunción) and had the power to rule over the Río de la Plata Provinces what was in European hands that time. He was appointed for the title 3 times between 1597-1599, 1602–1609 and 1615-1617.
d03_47 (2013-10-13 13:52:11) -- show location on Google Maps
You can find the last remaining member of the Las Bóvedas aka The Bunkers as well on the square. Sunday, alas the museum is closed. Its birth can be dated around 1793-1795 when the military leadership in Buenos Aires had to realize that the Port of Montevideo doesn't have sufficient defense against the Portuguese and Spaniard ships from the Río de la Plata. So they started to build these bunkers parallel to the water on the shore and they were connected underground via tunnels for communication and strategic reason. In total sum 34 bunkers were built which had a double 8.5 meters high and 3 meters thick walls, their roof was protected by 1.5 meters of stones and rocks.

The construction was hindered and hardly advanced forward as the extraction of the stone from the ground took a lot of manpower and time, how much did the hands of the convicts, missionaries, native Indians and sometimes the volunteers work. Finally after 13 years by 1806 the bunkers were ready.

In 1815 by the mishap of the Argentine squads 4 bunkers exploded and more than 100 soldiers died in the accident: General Artigas was on his way to Montevideo with his troops so the Argentine General Soler commanded to shovel all the gunpowder into the water from the barracks, to prevent Artigas get the precious ammunition. Yet one of the soldiers who shoveled busily, accidentally dropped his metal sword to the floor (or it skidded) thus a sparkle ignited the gunpowder and blew up the bunker. Additionally and likely the stray gunpowder in the tunnels carried the fire to the other 3 vaults - so likewise detonated into the air. 30 left.

During the later times the Portuguese ruled these bunkers, they used them mainly as prisons. By 1890 on 15 remained and after a governmental decision in 1929 13 were demolished to make room for the Southern walkway (Rambla Sur). Nowadays two bunkers exist: I don't know the location of the other but curious people do check the position from my below picture (one bunker is surely there). Who is interested in the interior, click here for the photos.
d03_48 (2013-10-13 13:52:31) -- show location on Google Maps
A commemorial map (2009) about Charles Darwin's travel between 1831 and 1836. Darwin roamed the whole southern shore from the Río Negro river in the west to the eastern Punta del Este.
d03_49 (2013-10-13 13:53:53) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_50 (2013-10-13 14:02:55) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_51 (2013-10-13 14:07:27) -- show location on Google Maps
The headquarter of the Navy.
d03_52 (2013-10-13 14:12:56) -- show location on Google Maps
Seeking chivito
What's that chivito, some birdie? Soon it will be cleared up, by the way the little goat (el chivo is the goat and chivito is diminutive) is one of the gastronomical milestones of Uruguay.

Exactly from the entrance of the Navy HQ starts the Perez Castellano pedestrian street and this leads to the highly recommended restaurants of the port where primarily seafood is offered for the tired travellers - but the lesser adventurous ones will have a long menu naturally. And the especially focused Chivito Hunters have only 1 item floating in front of their eyes.

I walked back and forth, stepped to one of the menus outside and in a few seconds the waitress of the restaurant started to list her suggestions. Her excitement was somewhat cooled down with my straightforward chivito question. At first, hearing 670UYU seemed a bit expensive, tho' at this time I didn't have the faintest idea what the heck is the chivito.

Yet before any thoughts could materialize in my head, the girl committed the biggest possible Sales error what they can commit against me: ...and of course the building next to us offer many restaurants, where you can get a chivito but the quality is worse there, the meat isn't the best. I silently remarked in myself, Dear, the direct damning of the competition ain't gonna strengthen your position, on the contrary it just proves that you don't do something well enough and you need to climb.

With a inaudibly buzzing moral victory I bid farewell to her and walked into the roofed market from the Cerrito street. Made some rounds in the building what has an atmosphere, the counters and tables are closely situated to each other and luckily there's a huge amount of people - as we know at any random point of the world, those eating places can serve an at least acceptable quality meals which are crowded. The counters are indeed full of people so I sat into a restaurant-like place and for 290UYU bought the first chivito of my life. So what's the chivito? Chivito is a portion of french fries, salad, tomato (you can ask it in buns too). A slice of beef, above a slice of ham and the soft-boiled egg reigns the top.

The deep-gastronome still respects any national ambitions but doesn't feel the overwhelming perspective of the creation.
d03_53 (2013-10-13 14:32:43) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_54 (2013-10-13 14:42:14) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_55 (2013-10-13 15:21:45) -- show location on Google Maps
The walk continued after the lunch
Again changed some money (unsure how much and the rate) then I followed the street toward south in the Old City of Montevideo.
d03_56 (2013-10-13 15:49:30) -- show location on Google Maps
Sarandi pedestrian street, looking back to west.
d03_57 (2013-10-13 15:55:16) -- show location on Google Maps
Let's go east.
d03_58 (2013-10-13 15:55:26) -- show location on Google Maps
You can find here the sculpture of Zabala Square, what commemorates the life of Bruno Mauricio de Zabala. He was a Spanish soldier and colonial officer who made his way to the pages of history when as a captain under the Spanish flag, he successfully defeated the pirates and fended off the Portuguese invasion aimed to the eastern part of the Río de la Plata in 1717.

His other, not lesser achievement was the foundation of the city. The history of Montevideo started on the 22nd of November 1723 when Manuel de Freitas da Fonseca Portuguese marshal built the Fort Montevieu around this location with his soldiers. They couldn't enjoy it for a long time because in mere two months on the 22nd of January 1724 the troops from Buenos Aires led by Zabala shooed them away and seized the fort. On the 24th of December Zabala founded the city with the name Montevideo; it became the capital in 1828.

The square was finished on the 31st of December 1890 and the sculpture is the work of the Spanish Lorenzo Coullaut Valera; the inauguration took place on 27th of December 1931.
d03_59 (2013-10-13 15:57:24) -- show location on Google Maps
The tower of the Metropolitan Cathedral.
d03_60 (2013-10-13 16:04:14) -- show location on Google Maps
The Plaza Constitución, aka Constitution Square. Its name derives from the First Constitution what was declared on the 18th of July in 1830 for the first time. During sitting-a-round, to my back is the above mentioned cathedral, in front at the right side of the picture the currently under renovation Government house cannot be seen.
d03_61 (2013-10-13 16:07:02) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_62 (2013-10-13 16:17:43) -- show location on Google Maps
Rusty parking lot. Old Town.
d03_63 (2013-10-13 16:20:14) -- show location on Google Maps
Emptied with weeds.
d03_64 (2013-10-13 16:20:23) -- show location on Google Maps
A big stroll next to the Río de la Plata
Walking continued on the southern walkway of Montevideo. Sunshine, shoreside, people.
d03_65 (2013-10-13 16:21:19) -- show location on Google Maps

panorama01
Templo Inglés, an Anglican church looks toward the Río de la Plata.
d03_66 (2013-10-13 16:40:09) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_67 (2013-10-13 16:40:58) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_68 (2013-10-13 16:47:54) -- show location on Google Maps
Historical memories. Dique Mauá, unfortunately locked.
d03_69 (2013-10-13 16:53:17) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_70 (2013-10-13 16:58:45) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_71 (2013-10-13 16:59:43) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_72 (2013-10-13 17:01:23) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_73 (2013-10-13 17:03:21) -- show location on Google Maps
Norteña, one of the leading local beer brand.
d03_74 (2013-10-13 17:07:43) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_75 (2013-10-13 17:20:22) -- show location on Google Maps
South America.
d03_76 (2013-10-13 17:23:00) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_77 (2013-10-13 17:23:08) -- show location on Google Maps

panorama02
d03_78 (2013-10-13 17:41:40) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_79 (2013-10-13 17:41:43) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_80 (2013-10-13 17:44:17) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_81 (2013-10-13 17:44:34) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_82 (2013-10-13 17:55:25) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_83 (2013-10-13 17:56:30) -- show location on Google Maps
Sunsets next to the shore are always miraculous.
d03_84 (2013-10-13 18:20:09) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_85 (2013-10-13 18:21:56) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_86 (2013-10-13 18:24:13) -- show location on Google Maps
Punta Carretas
The southernmost point of Montevideo with the lighthouse.
d03_87 (2013-10-13 18:35:49) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_88 (2013-10-13 18:37:19) -- show location on Google Maps
The Punta Brava lighthouse. The construction was completed on the 1st of October 1876: the tower is 19 meters high and its beacon is visible up to 18.5 nautical miles (34.28 kilometer). It flashes in every 10 seconds and from 1948 emits an alternate white and red colour so it cannot be mistaken with an another lighthouse or buoy. Since 1962 it operates with electricity.
d03_89 (2013-10-13 18:40:55) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_90 (2013-10-13 18:44:15) -- show location on Google Maps
The sunset.
d03_91 (2013-10-13 18:51:35) -- show location on Google Maps
d03_92 (2013-10-13 18:54:03) -- show location on Google Maps
...and that's how big our Universe is, and this is only the beginning...
d03_93 (2013-10-13 18:54:18) -- show location on Google Maps
Last moments, the whole sunset didn't last longer than 2 minutes.
d03_94 (2013-10-13 19:03:29) -- show location on Google Maps
That's all. Click here to see a manual, shot from the hand timelapse GIF.
d03_95 (2013-10-13 19:08:10) -- show location on Google Maps
The end of the day
I returned to the Pocitos beach around half past 8pm and made my way to the hostel around 9pm. Evening necessities arrived too. Around 10:30pm people knocked on the door, organized an asado dinner but I had to turn it down and preferred some sleep. 22:45, g'night.

It was a nice stroll and like always, I contrive the things well with memory, even if I don't have GPS or other hájtek gadget.
d03_96 (2013-10-13 21:32:00) -- show location on Google Maps