After my plane departed on time and I made it to Buenos Aires exactly on time it is no surprise that 3 days later it still hasn’t hit me that I am in Buenos Aires. It seems quite surreal to think that I am here for 6 weeks, but I am.
So far I love the city and urban feel. I love the way people are hurrying to their workplaces during the day, or home at night. I also enjoy the way the streets of Argentina become more lively as the late night encroaches. The streets are not really bumpin’ till 2 am, its the time when people are at their liveliest – the music plays loudly from apartments for everyone to hear. And although I hate watching my step for dog poop I love to watch people walk their dogs, and try to figure out who looks like whom – does the dog look like the owner or is it the other way around? (my very own version of who came first the chicken or the egg)
I love the cracks in the sidewalks in the neighborhood of our dorms, and the fact that all the streets are named after different countries. I love walking and getting lost. I love the old architecture, and the history that is palpable in the air which surrounds each and every building.
I don’t particularly enjoy how distant and reserved Argentinians seem. However, those that I have met and spoken too have been great, and their sarcastic humor is not lost on me – they’re all hilarious. My favorite thing though has to be that people still in-line skate here! Its not just something you see on Miami Beach like back home. I can’t wait to get into the groove of things and go rent a pair of skates!
I also don’t like the heavy foods that define Argentinian cuisine. The first day here I thought would be the end of me between the grilled greasy vegetables, and the endless onslaught of croissants (known here as media lunas/half moons), or the fried buñelos (fritters) I had no idea what to do. However, then I was introduced to Alfajores & dulce de leche and the world was right again! Alfajores are basically a cookie sandwich with a dulce de leche filling (sometimes covered in chocolate) and though it may not sound like much they’re incredibly addicting, particularly, the dulce de leche – I’ve been here 3 days, and I need to have some at least once a day. It is also delicious in ice cream form!
The pizza is also delicious.
While Argentinians don’t believe in serving free water (tap water), or in free refills, or in large showers , or in internet connections that work properly, or in real napkins (they resemble wrapping tissue paper) I can’t help but enjoy being in a huge city surrounded by so many people, so many new things to look at and explore. And also a whole new culture to learn about not only in my Argentinian culture & literature class, but also through the experience of meeting new people, and local students.
I’m realizing just how curious I am, and also how easy it is for me to adapt to different situations. I think it has a lot to do with having visited Cuba when I was younger, even though I’m half Cuban it was a real experience spending a couple months there when I was younger and experiencing first hand the customs of another culture.
This experience is really a dream come true. Even if things may happen that I will not enjoy (like never being able to connect to the internet) its enough that I’m actually here, living it, and experiencing Argentina first hand! As the weeks go on though I can’t wait to form a clearer opinion of the city to share with everyone. Just known that I’m working on it. Everything is currently rose colored.
Hasta la proxima ciao!