Every woman who seemed to be of grandmother age was serenaded with a chant that has turn into a rallying cry of this yr’s World Cup in Argentina: “Abuela, la, la, la, la, la.” The mantra, of the Spanish word for grandmother, began in Buenos Aires after certainly one of Argentina’s victories, when a bunch of young men sang it to a dancing older woman who wore a medical mask and wrapped herself in a flag.
“She still doesn’t know why everyone seems to be singing to her but she loves it,” said Silvia Belvedere of her 89-year-old mother, Nelida Peralta, who was standing on the sidewalk along the procession, gripping a cane and waving two small Argentina flags. Because the procession passed, each group that noticed her stopped to serenade her and take photos.
“I’m so comfortable,” Ms. Peralta said. “I can’t go there, so I’m staying here waving the flag.”
Farther down the avenue, a bunch of Bangladeshi immigrants were greeted warmly by the marching fans. Bangladesh’s love for Argentina’s national soccer team has turn into a significant storyline here, and so Argentines parading down the route stopped for photos and high fives. Considered one of the lads from Bangladesh, who said he had lived in Buenos Aires for twenty-four years, said he had never felt more connected to his adopted home.
Along the route, Argentines expressed their joy with whatever was at hand. Cars stuck at intersections watching the procession beeped incessantly; one man banged a pan with a spoon. And over and once again, the gang sang this yr’s anthem of the Argentina national team, “Muchachos, Ahora Nos Volvimos A Ilusionar” — or “Guys, Now We’re Getting Excited Again.”
The song has turn into a kind of celebratory hymn in Argentina over the past several weeks, and it speaks of Argentina’s late soccer star, Diego Maradona, a kind of deity on this country, looking down from the sky to assist Messi and his teammates bring Argentina one other World Cup. After the song’s prediction got here to fruition on Sunday, it was the soundtrack of the march.