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Argentinian Man Marries His 91-Year-Old Great-Aunt to Collect a Widower’s Pension After Her Passing

When it comes to getting money, some people will do just about anything, even marry their relatives. Take 25-year-old Mauricio Ossola, from Argentina, who last year married his 91-year-old great-aunt, so he could collect a widower’s pension after she died.

Mauricio moved in with his great aunt Yolanda, in the city of Salta, north-west Argentina, eight years ago, after his parents split up. He, his mother, her brother and his grandmother shared a home with the elderly woman in the neighborhood of Tres Cerritos, and apparently got along very well. So well, in fact, that two years ago Yolanda agreed to marry Mauricio so that he could collect a widower’s pension after she was gone. The then 23-year-old had told the woman that he planned to quit his law studies due to financial constraints , and she assured him that she would do everything she can to make sure he graduates. The young man recently admitted to reporters that he was the one who proposed they get married, and that she accepted. They tied the knot in February of 2015, in what he describes as a “discreet civil ceremony”.

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The Eye – A Mysterious Rotating Island in Argentina

Located near the northeastern edge of Argentina, in the swampy marshes of Parana Delta, is an enigmatic floating island that allegedly rotates on its own axis. Nicknamed “The Eye”, the nearly perfect circular island has become the subject of an upcoming documentary that will try to unravel the mystery of its existence.

The Eye was discovered six months ago by Argentine film director & producer Sergio Neuspillerm, who was looking for filming locations for a film about paranormal occurrences, like ghost and alien sightings, in the area. After spotting the unusually round island surrounded by an equally round body of water on Google Earth, Neuspillerm and his crew knew they had stumbled upon something truly special, so they abandoned their original film project and decided to focus on this mystery instead.

“When locating this reference in the map we discovered something unexpected that left the film project in the background, we call it ‘The Eye’,” Neuspillerm said in a video. “The Eye is a circle of land surrounded by a thin channel of water with a diameter of 130 yards. Both circles [the water and land] are so perfect that it is hard to believe that this is a natural formation.”

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Modern-Day Caveman Has Been Living in a Mountain Cave for the Last 40 Years

Pedro Luca, a 79-year-old man from Argentina is what you would call a 21st century caveman. He has been living in a grotto high up in the mountains of Tucuman Province for the last 4 decades.

Pedro says he had always wanted to live isolated in the middle of nature, even as a young boy. He was born and raised in San Pedro de Colalao, a small town about three-hours walking distance from his current home, but left home at 14 to make a living by transporting coal to Bolivia. When he cam back, 40 years ago, he decided to go through with his childhood dream, and set up camp in a mountain grotto, where he has been living ever since.

“Alcohol and violence can ruin a man,” Pedro says, remembering his days spent in civilization. “I prefer the wild. Now my only family are the animals.” He shares his cave home with 11 chickens and 2 goats who roam the mountainside all day long and return to the cave at nigh, seeking shelter from mountain lions and other predators living in the area.

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Woman Has Pet Cat Stuffed So She Can Take It with Her Everywhere

An Argentinian woman found it so hard to part with her recently deceased pet cat that she had its body stuffed by a taxidermist just so she could keep carrying it with her everywhere she goes.

Daniela Cardone and her stuffed cat Matute shot to fame a few days ago, when she posted some pictures of their trip to Lujan city, in the Buenos Aires province, on Instagram. Speaking to reporters, the former model said she simply couldn’t bear to part with Matute after he died around a month ago, so she sought out someone to help her preserve his body. She strongly believed that his soul was still around her, and it didn’t make sense for her to dispose of his body.

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As Young Argentinians Shun Marriage, Many Are Paying to Attend Fake Weddings

Although most young Argentinians aren’t even thinking about marriage these days, they seem quite fond of wedding ceremonies. So they’ve come up with a bizarre party trend of fake weddings, where groups of 20- and 30-somethings get together to attend wedding-themed parties complete with fake bride and groom.

The idea was the brainchild of 26-year-old publicist Martin Acerbi, who, a couple of years ago, organised a fake wedding with four of his friends in La Plata, about 32 miles away from Buenos Aires. “It all started two years ago with a group of friends: we realised we hadn’t been to a wedding in a long time because hardly anybody is getting married anymore,” Acerbi says.

To his surprise, the event was a huge success which got him thinking about a new business. The friends went on to found ‘Falsa Boda’, a fake wedding organising company, in November 2013. They rent out real wedding locations, hire caterers, florists, and DJs, and make everything look like a real wedding. Except, there is no ‘happily ever after’.

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Villa Epecuen – The Argentinian Town That Spent 25 Years Underwater

The town of Epecuen, in the Argentinian farmlands southwest of Buenos Aires, was once a bustling lakeside resort with a population of over 5,000. Over a quarter of a century ago it was flooded by the waters of a nearby lake and, until recently, it remained submerged. Now it’s finally come back up for air.

Established in 1920 along the shore of Lake Epecuen, the popular tourist destination played host to at least 20,000 visitors every season. Its main attraction was the saltwater lake, which contained 10 times more salt than the ocean. According to local legend, the lake is so salty because it was formed by the tears of a great Chief crying for the pain of his beloved. The waters of the lake were believed to cure depression, rheumatism, skin diseases, anemia, and even diabetes.

Thousands of visitors would arrive by train from the nation’s capital to relax in the town’s saltwater baths and spas. Tourists, mainly from Buenos Aires’ large Jewish community, enjoyed the floating water because it reminded them of the Dead Sea in Israel. The town had almost 300 thriving businesses – including guesthouses, lodges, hotels and other establishments centered around tourist trade.

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The Matchstick Fleet of Bernardo Cassasola

Argentinian artist Bernardo Cassasola has spent a large part of his life building ship models exclusively out of matchsticks. Now, he’s the proud owner of an entire fleet of incredibly detailed wooden vessels.

“It’s related to life. When I want to be somewhere I just sit down and I can fix my gaze on what I do. I feel wonderful sensations. I can be anywhere in the world because I’m just working with matchsticks,” Bernardo Cassasola once said, in an interview with Reuters. The 63-year-old artist from Argentina has been creating matchstick models since the age of 13, and as the years past, his creations became larger and more detailed. His impressive collection numbers millions of matchsticks, and includes musical instruments like guitars, banjos and violins, architectural models and impressive ship replicas. Throughout his life, Cassasola created a number of extremely accurate matchstick galleons, but his most noteworthy masterpiece is, without a doubt, the 10 feet six inches (3.2 m) war ship he worked on for 7 and a half years. This painstaking labor of love features stunning details like a tiny wooden helm, a scope, down to the handles of the ship’s doors. The multi-decked galleon was unveiled in 2008, when Bernardo Cassasola also announced his next challenge – a 10-meter-long replica of the Titanic made from matchsticks. This guy should definitely meet Wayne Kusy, the man who builds ships with toothpicks, I’m sure they’d have a ball.

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Faithful Dog Refuses to Leave Graveside of Owner Who Died Six Years Ago

Capitán, a dog who has remained by his deceased owner’s graveside for the last six years, proves an animal’s love and loyalty transcend the boundaries of life and death. Although he still has a family to go back to, the canine simply refuses to leave his master’s side.

Dogs’ devotion to their human owners never ceases to amaze me. In early 2011, when Brazil was devastated by floods and landslides, we posted the story of Leao, who made international headlines when photos of him lying next to his deceased master’s grave went viral. Later that year there was the story of a Chinese dog who wouldn’t leave his owner’s graveside even when other villagers tried to feed him, and today I came across another heartbreaking tale of canine loyalty. Capitán, a German shepherd from the Argentinian town of Villa Carlos Paz Cordoba, has chosen to remain close to his master, even though he died over six years ago. The man’s wife told La Voz that Capitán disappeared from their home soon after her husband died, and after searching for him, she and her son believed he was either killed by a car or adopted by another family. But when they went to visit her husband at the cemetery, there was Capitán. They couldn’t explain how he had managed to locate the right grave, but there he was, by his master’s graveside.

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Esplendor Buenos Aires Hotel – An Art Gallery You Can Sleep In

Usually, we only feature hotels on Oddity Central if they’re built on an old oil rig or if they look like a hamster cage, but the Esplendor Hotel in Buenos Aires isn’t weird like that. The only reason we decide to write about is because of incredible collection of portraits made from unusual materials located inside.

Although it’s known as one of the best hotels in the Argentinian capital, the Esplendor Buenos Aires Hotel is worth visiting just for the impressive portraits displayed around the hotel, including in the lobby, restaurant or all over the corridors. And while many hotels do their best to treat their clients to some fine art, what the Esplendor offers is truly special – portraits of various South American celebrities, from football legend Diego Armando Maradona to revolutionary Ernesto Che Guevara, made from all kinds of unusual materials.

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Welcome to the World’s Craziest, Most Controversial Zoo

At the Lujan Zoo, on the outskirts of Buenos Aires, visitors can do much more than admire wild animals from a distance. They can ride on the backs of wild lions, feed tigers or hand-feed cheetahs.

You couldn’t pay me enough to get up close and personal with a full-grown lion, but apparently there are people out there who can’t wait to get into a cage with it, and at the Lujan Zoo they get to do just that. Daredevils can feed grapes to the grizzly bears or even allow them to use their tongues to pick up the fruits from between their lips, pet elephants, ride on the back of tigers and whatever else you can think of that involves interacting with wild animals. I know what you’re thinking, all this is an accident waiting to happen, but you’ll be surprised to learn that ever since the zoo opened in 1994, there hasn’t been a single accident. In fact, zoo keepers are so confident nothing is going to go wrong that they don’t require visitors to sign any waivers before entering the animals’ cages, and they even allow small children.

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Argentine Widow Sleeps in Late Husband’s Mausoleum to Keep Him Company

Some people have strange ways of honoring their loved ones who have passed a way. Take Adriana Villarreal, an Argentine widow who sleeps in her late husband’s small mausoleum to keep him company, because she loves him so much.

43-year-old Adriana Villarreal, from Buenos Aires, recently made headlines in the Argentinian media after she confessed spending a few nights a year in her dead husband’s mausoleum. According to Gustavo Braganza, a police commissioner from the town of Dos de Mayo, his colleagues went to investigate what was going on in the San Lazaro cemetery, after reports of someone living there and playing loud music. When they knocked on the tomb door, Villarreal greeted them in her pijamas, and they could actually see she had been living next to a coffin and an embalmed body.

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Argentine Farmer Makes Giant Guitar with 7,000 Trees

Pedro Martin Ureta, an Argentine farmer from General Levalle, has used 7,000 cypress and eucalyptus trees to create a giant guitar in memory of his late wife, Graciela.

Seeing this incredible design for the first time, I bet the first thing that comes to mind is “Photoshop”, but this one’s for real, folks. 70-year-old Ureta embedded this carefully planned design into his farm many years ago, and maintains it in honor of his wife, Graciela Yraizoz, who died in 1977, when she was only 25.

Mr. Ureta met Graciela in the 1960s, when he returned home after traveling to Europe, where he spent a lot of time with artists and revolutionaries. He was 28 when he first saw this beautiful 17-year-old girl and soon decided he wanted to spend the rest of his life with her. Despite the priest’s reluctant attitude, thinking Pedro wasn’t committed enough to loving Ms. Yraizoz all his life, the two got married and proved extremely devoted to each other.

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Modern Tower of Babel Made of Books Appears in Buenos Aires

Popular Argentine artist Marta Minujin has created a 25-meter-high spiraling Tower of Babel made from 30,000 books written in various languages.

This modern version of the Tower of Babel was designed in celebration of Buenos Aires’ designation as World Book Capital 2011, by UNESCO, and local authorities say it represents the ideas of pluralism and diversity which also characterize the Argentine capital city. This isn’t Minujin’s first experience with book installations; in 1983, when democracy was restored in Argentina, she built a replica of the Parthenon from books banned by the former military dictatorship.

The tower consists of a spiraling metal frame and around 30,000 books written in most of the world’s languages and dialects. You can find all kinds of books, from dictionaries and encyclopedias to software manuals and classic novels, arranged on six levels. The bottom level features a collection of books from around the world, the first and second levels are for American books, the third and fourth are reserved for Europe, the fifth for Africa and the sixth for Asia. 16,000 of the books were donated by 52 embassies in Buenos Aires, while the rest were provided by Argentine readers.

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