Panoramic Photos of Necochea, Argentina

Just over two years ago, I wrote about a website called 360 Cities that features fantastic panoramic photos of cities all over the world. At the time, the site boasted a number of images of Buenos Aires, but the rest of Argentina was grossly underrepresented. The image gallery has grown quite a bit in the last couple of years, and there's now a wonderful collection of interactive 360-degree panoramic photos from all over Argentina, including a handful from right here in Necochea.

The following panoramic photo offers a glimpse of Necochea's Escollera Norte (North Jetty), the port, the sea lions, and the stretch of beach known as Playa de los Patos. If you're interested in learning more about the area shown in this photo, take a look at this post about the sights of Puerto Quequén.

[Necochea's Escollera Norte in Argentina]

360 Cities also offers panoramic shots of local attractions in Necochea such as Plaza San Martín, the beaches (both here and here), the monument to General San Martín, the amphitheater in Parque Miguel Lillo, and the promenade.

Enjoy your virtual tour of Necochea!

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Yet Another Funny Argentine Brand

On my recent trip to Buenos Aires, I popped into a local drugstore chain to pick up a few items that aren't readily available here in Necochea. While I wasn't in the market for the following set of products (thank goodness!), I couldn't help but snicker at the name.

ASSY lice products in Argentina by katiemetz

ASSY products – a full line of head lice removal treatments found here in Argentina – include shampoo/conditioner, mousse, various lotions and lice combs. Cooties are certainly no laughing matter, but this product's name sure is.

Want more funny brand names from Argentina? Take a look at previous posts here and here.

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Sunflowers in Quequén

One of my favorite aspects of summertime here in the southern part of the province of Buenos Aires is how the farmland comes alive with color, courtesy of acre upon acre of sunflowers. When my friend and photographer Elizabeth Lovelace came to visit us a few weeks ago, along with her husband and daughter, we took a ride out to the land owned by Daniel's family to commune with the sunflowers for a bit. The insects were out in full force that day, so we didn't stick around too long; however, we did manage to capture a few shots of the sunflowers bathed in the rich late afternoon light before the bugs got the best of us.

The first three photos were shot by Liz, and the last two were snapped by yours truly. Visit Liz's photography blog FotosEli to view the rest of her sunflower images from that day.

Sunflower by Elizabeth Lovelace [FotosEli]

Back of Sunflower by Elizabeth Lovelace [FotosEli]

Sunflower with Bee by Elizabeth Lovelace [FotosEli]

Sunflower Petals by katiemetz, on Flickr

Liz Among the Sunflowers by katiemetz, on Flickr[Liz caught in the act]

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Our New Addition to the Family

Sleepless nights, multiple feedings, lots of crying, and a jealous sibling. It all points to none other than…a new kitten!

A few months after the loss of Cocoa, I considered getting a new cat, but the right opportunity never presented itself. Then, on Sunday night, I happened upon the Facebook page for a local animal rescue called C.A.A.N. [Centro de Ayuda al Animal de Necochea]. The photo of a skinny, gray kitten jumped out at me from among the numerous puppies and older dogs up for adoption. Described as very cuddly and in need of a good home, this little kitty tugged at my heartstrings.

The next morning, I called the vet's office where the kitten was temporarily housed, and about an hour and a half later, she was lounging on my bed! After tossing around a few different names, we settled upon Misha.

So ladies and gentlemen, I'm pleased to introduce the newest feline member of the household, Misha.

Misha by katiemetz, on Flickr

Misha by katiemetz, on Flickr

While I'm feeling every bit the proud parent, Ziggy [photo], my other cat, appears rather ambivalent toward her new sibling (OK, that's actually my diplomatic way of stating that she turns into a screaming, spitting, swatting demon hellcat when she sees Misha). Ziggy has peacefully coexisted with other cats before, so I'm confident that it's only a matter of time before she adjusts to Misha's presence. In the meantime, we're living in something of a warzone.

¡Hola! by katiemetz, on Flickr

Despite the spats with her big sister, our new addition is making herself right at home. She's already mastered chewing on string, leaping from the bed to the windowsill, and taking long naps in the sunshine.

Sleepy I by katiemetz, on Flickr

If you'd like to see more photos of Misha, click here.

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Argentine Weddings–Party 'Til the Break of Dawn

Je T'aime by katiemetz, on Flickr

I'm pleased to say that my approaching nuptials served as inspiration for an expat group blog post about weddings. Ana, Argentine blogger and author of A pinch of this, a dash of that, came up with the idea for a group post centering on wedding customs and stories from the countries we now call home. Ana entertains us with the story of her wedding to her British beau here in Argentina, while Aledys, author of From Argentina to the Netherlands, For Love!, tells of her experiences at her very first Dutch wedding. Please take a few moments to read their stories!

Once upon a time, I used to consider myself a night owl – that is, until I moved to Argentina. Argentines are creatures of the night, eating late and socializing until all hours of the morning. Weddings are no exception, as I found out last February when Daniel's cousin got married.

The evening started off as one would expect. Our presence was requested at the imposing Catholic church on Necochea's main square at the respectable hour of 6:30pm. Though the traditional cadre of bridesmaids and groomsmen was notably absent, the wedding ceremony followed a predictable, albeit short, course of events (I believe it may have set a record for quickest Catholic wedding ever).

Immediately following the ceremony, we headed to the reception, which took place in a lovely venue located riverside here in Necochea. We noshed on hors d'oeuvres and sipped champagne on the deck overlooking the Río Quequén, with the nearly full moon reflecting off its waters, while we awaited the arrival of the happy couple. In the wake of the bride and groom's grand entrance in a cool, vintage convertible, the guests were ushered inside to take their seats in preparation for dinner.

I noticed the bride and groom readying themselves for their first dance right after the appetizer course, which struck me as odd since the dancing at most American weddings doesn't begin until the meal has just about concluded. After an elegant waltz around the dance floor, the bride and her new husband also danced with their parents. And with that, the dance floor was officially opened, with guests rising between each and every course to boogie down a bit before the next round of beef and various salads arrived at the table (What else did you expect for dinner? This is Argentina after all).

The food and drink kept pouring out from the kitchen, as I glanced in disbelief at the clock. The sweet table, filled with assorted pies, cakes and cookies, opened at 1:30am, and the bride and groom paused momentarily from the action to cut the cake, a multilayered, dulce de leche-filled confection known as rogel.

There were celebratory toasts, a comedy sketch, and a digital slideshow of photos of the bride and groom. The bride tossed the bouquet, which I scrambled to catch (to no avail). The groom cheekily slid the garter off the bride's leg. The father of the bride even danced atop one of the tables (!).

At an hour when most American weddings would be long over, they busted out the party hats, feather boas, masks, and crazy glasses (items collectively known as cotillón). Back in the United States, I had never attended a wedding that went later than midnight, and here, at half past two, the party was just getting started!

Daniel and I packed it in around 5am. Still going strong on the dance floor, a bunch of grannies in sparkly, multi-colored party hats put me to shame as I dragged myself out to the car. Apparently, for those who braved it until the bitter end (sometime around 7am), the reward was piping-hot pizza and other goodies.

I slipped into bed around 5:30am, with the pulsating rhythm of Latin tunes still echoing in my head. With aching feet and a gurgling stomach, I drifted off to sleep quickly as the bride, groom, and other partygoers continued until dawn.

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