One day, a kangaroo, a lemur, and a parrot decide to go to a Boca Juniors soccer game in Buenos Aires. They had heard that a game was being played against a team named Hurucan, a relatively weak opponent. They had also heard that to go to a Boca game without camouflage and a 90 liter backpack filled with all the usual necessities of walking through the amazon, it meant certain death or severe maiming. This story attempts to follow these three through their experience and try to make it clear to the curious gringo of how to enjoy this Experience.
Lemur, Kangaroo, and Parrot had very little information going into this Experience to give them any clue of what to expect. All they knew that Boca is supposed to represent the poor population and in a dubious part of town with a night time game. The passion runs high with these people and it can be very difficult to rationalize with someone who is half insane with drum beats and speaks a different language than you. Not to mention the fact that Parrot was the whitest animal around and stood several inches taller than everyone. From the little information they were able to gather, it appeared that for anyone other than a Boca inhabitant, tickets would be costly and upwards of 200 pesos not including the jersey required to enter the stadium to avoid random floggings. Check out http://www.bocaexperience.com/ for the full lowdown.
The three heroes decide this would be unacceptable and find a friend who can get them a ticket alone from that website for only 130 pesos. Still a lot but better than being completely duped. So they pick up the tickets at a very seedy looking bar in a more seedier looking part of town. The exchange was made with Juancho and they now had tickets. They purchased jerseys and were kitted out. The last thing Juancho said to them was to make sure you use door 7 other wise you would be with ‘the mob’. He also assured us that just because the tickets said doors 12 and 14, USE DOOR 7. Advice was duly noted.
They head in the direction of the stadium, La Bombanera, hoping to find a beer or two before they entered. It became clear that the roads were being cordoned off and the Kioscos did not sell any beer. Obviously an abundance of alcohol at these events had caused some serious damage in the past. All of the houses were strongly fortified up to about 15 feet at which point there were always dogs staring down and dripping saliva. There was a very large line that the three herded themselves into, as animals do. The other animals around them appeared to be equally confused about why they had just got into a really long line without asking any questions. The line began to move quickly and fortunately they found themselves in line for door 7. They get to the front and are told immediately and without question that they could not enter through door 7. They got herded to the side and told to enter on the other side of the stadium. They went to the VIP section to try and use their unique appearance as a bargaining chip but that was ineffective.
The other side of the stadium was filled with scalpers offering up tickets and hot dogs being sold. There is a general admissions line that Lemur was sure would have sold the exact piece of paper they had paid 100 pesos extra for. They wait in line, get searched several times, have their ticket checked several times by many cops who appeared to be doing nothing other than grunting something as you walked by.
The construction of the Bombanera was never completed as they intended. The houses on one side of the stadium fought to keep their lives in tact and fought off the futbol team. So instead they built a vertical VIP box wall on one side of the stadium. One end of the field is where door 7 leads to. It is filled with seats and was very crowded for the whole game. Above that section was the away team crowd which, although small, packed a hell of a roar and brought many sorts of instruments and flags to back it up. The other long side of the field is a very mellow seated section which appeared to be filled with the older crowd who enjoyed watching football and were likely members of the club. The other short side is what thy call ‘La Popular’ were the general hooligans and riff raff sit. And by sit I mean go absolutely bonkers for 2 hours.
There are no seats in the popular section so everyone is standing and alternating their way up the stair (seats) were bars about chest high that people could lean on. When the three looked for a place to graze in the crowd they picked a spot right in the middle. There were several other animals taking these extremely long pieces of blue and yellow cloth and tying them to the bottom and top leaning bars. At this point it began to rain with incredible intensity which had no effect on anything that was going on. The three visitors to this habitat were right under one of the pieces of cloth which smelled like it had been used as a sweat rag since 1989 and never washed and likely was left here in the stadium over night. They also figured that the flags would move when the kickoff came. This did not happen. Instead everyone around started fighting for a spot on one of these metal leaning bars. They would use the huge cloth to lean forward and stand on the bar. On a bar about 15 feet long there were 15 people holding onto this piece of cloth that was being used by 4 other leaning bars above them while its raining to the point we cannot see the other side of the stadium. The footwear of these acrobats was definitely not adequate to be jumping and screaming while on a bar 4 feet high on a stadium stand that was maybe at a 50 degree slant.
Even with Kangaroo hopping as high as he could, the three of them felt really dumb after a while of not seeing the game and staring at ankles and catching a drunk or stoned guy as he slips on a metal leaning bar. They found a spot which gave them maybe 70 percent coverage of the field. Lemur realized quickly that his spot was the main through way to exit and leave the area and he also realized that his sandals were not sufficient protection from the drunk guy in front of him unpredictably moving his feet as he struggled to lean on the fat guy next to him. The three could look behind them and see a heaving crowd of fanaticos screaming and singing song after song after song. Many were not even looking at the game and and had a look of physical strain on their face as they tried to get every last inch of sound out of them to encourage their team.
The game itself was entertaining but not a great demonstration for Argentine soccer or for the reigning champions of the league. The crowd encourages the players to slide hard and recklessly with booming roars when a tackle is successful. The problem is they don’t say anything bad when the defenders miss a tackle with a flailing slide from 20 feet on the wet grass.
The second half was uneventful for the three visiting animals accept for the fact that they changed to a new location offering a better view as well as the rain doubling its strength and tenacity.
With 3 minutes left the animals decide to leave the scene and attempt to get out early. They walk into the exit corridor which was rather packed with people but understandable due to the rain. The three animals squirmed half way into the thick of people before they realize that there are policeman not letting anyone through this exit. Many other people started to leave to only to pack this corridor even more. Lemur had a frantic guy and his child try to squeeze to the front only to be lodged right in front of Lemur. Lemur had his snout about 1 inch away from a guy who was needlessly panicking and turning his head fast and wildly. Meanwhile the kid of this guy was punching Lemur in the Lemur boludos, definately needlessly. The police waited until the rest of the stadium was out of the stadium before they would let the roughians out, and quite rightly so. The crowd eventually brute forced their way passed the police and ran for the exits, no doubt to hunt down the other sections in a brutal race through the streets of Boca town.
After walking for miles, they were told by the first brave taxi to pick them up that taxis just do not operate in Boca after a game.
How to goto a boca juniors futbol game instructions
- If you pick a game other than San Lorenzo, River Plate, or Independientes, then keep reading these instructions otherwise tickets will be extremely hard to get and likely expensive. The team gives priorities to the members of the club and tickets will be used by them first.
- Goto the ticket windows. Get in a taxi and say take me to doors 12 and 14 in front of bombanera and say it with confidence. Your ticket should cost 30 pesos. There are lots and lots of windows and some may be closed but maybe the one at the very end is open, one will be open.
- If you feel brave you can buy some scalped tickets in the main field in the front of the ticket windows. I heard there are a lot of fake tickets going around however.
- Make sure you are wearing a jersey and not flashing anything flossy around.
- Go straight to the middle of the popular section and start screaming and singing. You wont see the game but they will love you. If you want to watch the game, stay away from the flags in the middle.
- Dont leave early. Just wait until the yells stop.
- There was no alcohol but people were definitely drunk. There was also a lot of drugs of all sorts and they didnt seem to mind the police at the top of the stand.
- The other stand has tickets for 60 pesos or so but not nearly as fun and usually sold out to members.
- Act like you are singing the whole time as they will harass you if you look to not be chanting.
Don’t be duped into becoming a River fan because you are told it is safer than a Boca game. Boca is perfectly fine and will she will be prepared to embrace you with all her love!