National Geographic : 1975 Mar
Under lowering skies, vacationists all but hide the pewter sands of Mar del Plata, a popular Atlantic shore re sort. Behind them sprawls the world's largest gambling casino, where 24,000 optimists a night can ride their luck or reach the bottoms of their pockets. Less-taxing recreation beckons from a flea-market stand that caters to the appetite for nostalgia (right). Old magazines in the top row feature Eva and Juan Per6n apart and together. In the next row a browser has passed by a wanly idealized Eva Per6n for Carlos Gardel, tango singer and national idol who died in 1935. A bittersweet melancholy for the past haunts the Argentine present. In the 1930's and early '40's a literate, European-minded people of growing wealth looked to a grand future. Then came Per6n, iron-handed rule, and costly attempts to industrialize. Even in exile, Per6n's shadow fell across a country whose economy and popula tion growth had stagnated. He came home in triumph in 1973, only to die after sounding a note of lost yesterdays. 312 ,..