Rosario is a really spread out city, the hippest parts of which sit on the West bank of the River Parana. This makes getting around via public transit kind of a pain sometimes. After a 35-minute bus ride, we finally arrived at Playa Florida for some beachtime relaxin’. Though this was soon disrupted by a raucous soccer game, which just sprang up, forcing us up onto the sea wall. We weren’t the only ones displaced and affected; the boundaries of the makeshift field were simply drawn around families with small children, I saw a sunbathing older woman take a soccer ball to the head and laugh and throw the ball back. Soccer is king in this country and everybody seems to know it.
Watching Argentines play is an interesting lens into their culture. It’s more than just a pick up game on a beach, it’s about pride (for this reason I also find Argentine soccer a bit annoying with it’s over-the-top machismo). Their ball control is incredible, I was talking to my college friends living in BA who had once found themselves facing chubby 12-year olds in a pick up match and outskilled, outhustled and outmatch.
Later on, we headed to Alta Grande for a Muncipal flotilla that was to take place. The “Caravana de Deseos” (Caravan of Desires) involved an assemblance of maybe 100-200 watercrafts who raced down to the flag monument to place hand-written notes in the River Parana of their future desires for 2010. Policemen mounted on jetskis barking orders at Argentine “sailors” that were obviously too drunk to be piloting anything.