Sleepless in Buenos Aires


Jun 18, 2005
Its quite late as I type this and yet still cars go by so loud (from no muffler) that it almost sounds like they will explode in the street. the wooden floor vibrates, the window panes shakes. This is my 4th building in Buenos Aires and the exploding sound of the cars and the airplane engine high pitched screeching of the belching busses no longer surprises me, yet wakes me up and keeps me harried.
Is anyone out there getting a good nights sleep and what is the secret? The noise from one car or bus, an individual vehicle, is enough to blow you out of bed at any hour. zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz BOOOOM bang, ROAR! Welcome to Buenos Aires.
Just as you are about get to sleep the dog walkers with 8 dogs on leash will stop under your window and seranade you with 8 dogs barking in unison. Did you ever notice when taking the collectivo all the people nodding off.
Ah well spotted DQ. The place to sleep is the collectivo, rocked by the gentle motion as it careers around the corners.
Night time is the time for Tango, UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES must you sleep at night, or the Tango vampires will get you. The subte is also good, but you may awake naked and minus all your possessions. If all else fails, get a box and sleep in the doorway, I have seen many sleeping the sleep of the innocent this way, ocasionally not even breathing.
It is a little known fact in Argentine history that when the Pedro de Mendoza expedition first arrived in what is now Buenos Aires, the area was populated by the Roo--eee--doh indians. These indigenous people were known throughout the local region for their propensity to sing and dance and carry on 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.The constant noise kept the Medoza expedition awake for days on end, until finally they could stand it no more, and fled up river to what is now Asunción, leaving the cattle and horses behind. Although most of the expedition's members were adverse to the constant noise, a small group actually enjoyed the constant partying and they were miffed at having to leave. When they got to Paraguay, they immediately married some local indians and began a small side colony based on the notion of non-stop noise. Eventually, as both colonies grew, they clashed. The noise makers, being out numbered, were forced to leave Asunción. And so they headed back downriver to Buenos Aires, approximately 40 years after they had left.The returning colonists were greeted warmly by the Roo--eee--doh indians as soon as they demonstrated that they were committed to making noise around the clock. And thus the colony began to prosper.This tradition of making noise 24/7 is a core part of Buenos Aires history, and not likely to go away anytime soon.
ROFL obviously my history was lacking. Thank you for enlightening us all.
Buy dark, heavy curtains to help muffle the noise. Don't forget your ear plugs. Obviously, they don't enforce any motor vehicle code, or if they do some people manage to get around the system. I too have noticed the loud sounding mopeds and cars wizz down the streets at all hours of the night. You could always leave your tv on while you sleep. I put on The Hunt for Red October with Sean Connery when I can't sleep. It puts me to sleep every time.
Lastly, I have noticed living in our old apartment on the 7th floor of a building in Remedios de Escalada was very noisy, but the home of my parents-in-law, one story, is very quiet. You wouldn't even know you were in the city until that man in his antique airplane is flying overhead yelling in his megaphone about a new restaurant or business that is running a promotion - what a sight! That's when I wish I brought my bb gun with me.