Been There – Uruguay

Starbucks Been There – Uruguay is another mug from South America that I had no chance to add, even though it was released back in 2018. The country, whose official name is the Oriental Republic of Uruguay, borders Brazil on the north and Argentina on the south. Montevideo is the capital and the largest city of the country.
During the colonization times, the ownership of these lands was not very well defined. It was always under influence of both Spain and Portugal. Nowadays Spanish is the official language of the country with a certain percentage of the people in north-eastern Uruguay, near the Brazilian border, still speaking Uruguayan Portuguese. It is a variety of Portuguese with heavy influence from Rioplatense Spanish.
Couple things from the mug:
– The skyline of the city and the beach – refers to Montevideo’s location on the shores of the Atlantic ocean. The temperature of the water is high enough for swimming during the winter months (January, February, March, April).
– The tambores de candombe or tamboriles (Candombe drums) are drums used in the playing of Candombe music of Uruguay. There are three sizes: piano, repique, and the chico. The drums are made of wood and have a curved barrel shape with its base very narrow.
– The Sun of May (Sol de Mayo) is depicted twice on the mug. It is a national emblem of Uruguay and Argentina and appears on the flags of both countries. Interestingly enough, Uruguay actually has three official flags: the one with the Sun is the national flag of Uruguay (Pabellón Nacional) with the other two being the flag of Artigas (pays homage to José Gervasio Artigas, the national hero of Uruguay) and the flag of the Treinta y Tres. The last one refers to the military expedition of the Treinta y Tres Orientales led by Juan Antonio Lavalleja and Manuel Oribe which fought against the Empire of Brazil.

Please note, there are ferries between Buenos Aires (Argentina) and Montevideo or Colonia del Sacramento(Uruguay) which are worth taking when you visit any of those cities. Btw, Colonia del Sacramento is one of the oldest towns in Uruguay. The lighthouse from the back of the mug seems to be coming from there.

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