Buenos Aires was an interesting place to spend Christmas. Decorations were few and far between. Casa Navidad did not have extended hours. Around noon on Christmas Eve, stores began to close. Carrefour, with the most stores in the world, closed at 1800. Cathy and I went to mass at the national cathedral before noon. Instead of traditional midnight services, the latest started at 10pm.We had our group dinner at a tango show. A bus had taken us to the show, but a small group chose to walk back. We were treated to fireworks displays all around us. Little kids with sparklers, bottle rockets shot from the street, to giant displays worthy of Boston on July 4th. WE went to our hotel’s rooftop pool and could see bright colors in all directions. A penthouse across from us had a big gathering of people. On Christmas day the city was nearly empty. The normally crowded Avienda 9 de Julio had only a couple of cars on its fourteen lanes. Very few pedestrians could be seen.
Our 4-star hotel only served breakfast. We met in the vacant sitting area and had a little celebration of our own. All had gone on a shopping spree the day before and gotten gifts costing less than $10US. Kevin and Julia wrapped them in newspaper and assigned each a number. Reinhard was recruited as Santa and the desk clerk pushed him in using a luggage carrier as a sleigh. Several countries were represented with traditional treats and a good time was had by all. At 6pm we walked to one of a few restaurants that were open and had a lovely meal. Only two other tables were occupied.
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