27 January, 2009

Voy a apolillar a la playa

The gentle sound of the lapping waves and the still-hot but gradually setting sun inspired a siesta after the rigors of lunching at La Huella, the José Ignacio beach bungalow that serves everything from sushi, the never-missing selection of steaks, to grilled brótola, a fish commonly found in the region's waters. So it is timely my friend just taught me apolillar, an Argentine slang meaning "to crash," or to fall asleep.

"Hello I am the sushi director at La Huella," the blue-eyed woman in a mildly Asian-inspired outfit said to us as we settled into our seat. Well that's the first time I've met a sushi director anywhere!

But that's the pleasure on traveling - to be surprised - sometimes good and sometimes bad.

* * *

Thanks to the generosity of a couple friends and their family, I visited Punta del Este last weekend. A region situated on Uruguay's eastern coast, the beach resort is the summer playground of well-heeled Porteños and Brazilians. Out were my usually frugal affairs of hostel bunks and a liter of Quilmes beer; I passed the weekend feeling distinctly underdressed during social affairs.

But a lovely weekend it was. Unlike the oven that is Buenos Aires during the summer, the Atlantic sea breeze, the sandy beaches, and the chic eateries of La Barra and José Ignacio all contributed to softening my will to return to the city - as enjoyable as Buenos Aires is.

It is easy to forget that not all the world live like this.

Of chilled Chardonnays while overlooking an Uruguayan sunset, a vivacious grandmother who rode the waves on an inner tube and advised that the best way to improve my Spanish is to date a pretty Porteña, a former diplomat who powered up his boat to offer me a tour of Punta del Este, to a night at a fashion show my friend produced, I am unlikely to repeat such a weekend any time soon.

* * *

So yes - voy a apolillar a la playa, or I'm going to crash on the beach.


Baino said...

Ha! Talk about the high life and here was I worrying that you'd be existing on two minute noodles! Sounds wonderful . . 'I passed the weekend feeling distinctly underdressed during social affairs.' haha . . no such problem in Oz! Although our idea of dressing up is wearing shoes in order to pass a club/pub dress code!

Sven said...

Poor Ted, I feel for you and your worry of being underdressed. Btw, all your ties are doing quite well in my closet as I await on opportunity to attend a fashion show or going hobnobbing with diplomats, myself. I do get a lot of use out of your old bed, though, given that it has lately been the only place I spend my single digit non-working hours.

Quickroute said...

careful - you could get used to this life!