The Lonely Griller

by | Dec 14, 2001

As “a visitor whose days were numbered” in Buenos Aires, Argentina, he tossed aside dietary restrictions to experience the enormous variety of meat dishes, cuts of meat he hadn’t seen anywhere else, such as bife de chorizo.

He ate splendidly grilled meat at fancy restaurants when he was invited and at tiny neighborhood joints. The smell of barbecued meat was always wafting through the streets from portable grills set out on sidewalks.

To counteract the effects of Argentine meat and its equally delicious pasta, Aguilera began running every morning at 6:30 a.m. in Parque Centenario, the Buenos Aires equivalent of New York’s Central Park.

The smell of meat was there too, even at that hour. Every morning, in the same place, a middle-aged Argentine street vendor was tending his grill filled with sausages and bife. He looked as if he had been there all night. No one was ever buying his grilled meat at that hour, but he always stood there, ritually poking and turning the barbecued meat, a lonely guy in the middle of a great big park in this great big city of Buenos Aires in the quiet dawn.

Spring/Summer 2001

 

Gabriel Aguilera, a doctoral candidate in Harvard’s Government Department, used a Foreign Language and Area Studies (FLAS) fellowship in summer 2000-2001 to further research on his dissertation on the politics of direct foreign investment policies in Latin America.

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