Day 11: La Boca

Today I had to miss the first half of my day due to still being sick but luckily, I was able to still participate in the second half. I met up with the group for lunch at a really nice restaurant and then hopped on the bus to head over to the neighborhood called La Boca. This neighborhood is known for being colorful, lively, and sadly, in great poverty. Even while waiting for our plane to Buenos Aires last week a couple next to us from Buenos Aires told us to never travel alone or at night through this particular neighborhood.

On our tour we learned the neighborhood was greatly inhabited by immigrants at the time of its birth. The houses were made from scraps of metal materials and painted with leftover paints from the boats traveling in and out of the now retired port. In result, there were many different people speaking many different languages which left them to develop a new form a communication which was, the Tango.

Tango is a commonly practiced form of ballroom dance all over the world today. It has been changed and varied to fit new cultures but has always remained with its core rhythm and sexuality. Among the new era of quickly spreading innovation and globalization traditions are becoming harder and harder to preserve. I believe that the roots of a culture should always be preserved, but in a way that also moves with the new culture of today. We saw this in the examples of new Tango music that have been created to interest the new ears of today’s millennials. Just as the Tango has been able to keep its roots, La Boca has been able to preserve much of its culture.

Many of the original buildings in La Boca remain today and also have kept their same stunning colorful fronts. Some of these buildings include their original tango houses called Milongas. Some new buildings have also opened using these same colors to preserve the traditions. Also, in recent years many murals have been painted to represent the true roots of La Boca such as Tango, Immigrants, and soccer. With all of these efforts, La Boca has been able to preserve their roots and keep the values of their people close. Even with its new found culture of tourists and souvenir markets, it has kept its rich beauty of culture.

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