We spent the morning in the colourful barrio of La Boca. Unfortunately, this place has become tourist-central (read # Tango) since our last visit eight years ago. What was then a relatively quiet, albeit thriving, working-class suburb, has become a mass tourist mecca, well, certainly around the colour-saturated El Caminito, a small street of brightly painted corrugated zinc shanty houses. There are Tango dancers everywhere, every restaurant, every street corner, it’s Tango-overload and not, I’m afraid to say, in a good way – it seemed to lack the passion and just-barely-constrained sexiness of some we’ve seen.
For me the highlight of this particular visit was the local school basketball court, incredibly colourful and best of all, NO ONE THERE! Elsewhere tourists were busy sticking their heads through painted cut-out boards, guzzling Quilmes (local beer) and succumbing to the annoyingly clawing restaurant touts that now inhabit this area.
There are still plenty of warnings not to wander too far off the beaten track as petty crime is rife, especially nowadays with the influx of visitors with flashy expensive cameras around their necks. That would have been us today btw… No, I’m afraid the soul seems to have been ripped out of La Boca. We grabbed a taxi and sped home to Caseros, bought some excellent tortillas for lunch, and now await our private Tango lesson at 5pm.