Buenos tardes a todos! So I have officially been in Buenos Aires for a week now! It’s crazy how fast the time is flying. Feels like only yesterday I was scrambling around the airport to find some Americans.
So this week was orientation for the IES students. On Tuesday we had an oral exam which placed us into our Spanish classes… I got placed in 290 instead of 300 and they told me I shouldn’t take more than two classes in Spanish. I wasn’t having that because 290 probably won’t transfer back at Penn State so currently my adviser and I are convincing IES that I can definitely handle three Spanish classes. Muy complicado. After all the advising and stuff, I had lunch with Julia, Lucas and Amanda at a sandwich shop… muy bueno. I did get some new shoes (warmer ones, at that) at a 2 for 1 sale at Mary & Joe on Santa Fe with Julia. We went to a bar called Sugar that night and met some of our friends from the other night. It was lots of fun, and afterwards we went to a boliche. All they played was American music, which surprised me, but I enjoyed it nonetheless!
Wednesday I had lunch with Kathryn and Julia at a La Tienda de Café where we watched a tennis match between Del Potro and Federer (Julia and Kathryn are going to turn me into a tennis geek) in the Olympics. Del Potro lost but it was awesome seeing all the Argentines line up outside of shops to watch TV through the window and root for Argentina. After that we went to el Museo de Arte Hispanoamericano with IES, and once again I was reminded that museums aren’t really my thing because I just wanted to leave. Jaja. We also finally got cell phones (YAY) and later went home to nap (one of my favorite things to do here). That night I got to meet up with my friend Emily from Penn State! She gave us tons of tips about the city, where to go, what to see, etc. It’s too bad she had to leave on Friday, but she was a lot of help! After Julia and I went to a bar called Alamo to meet up with some IES students, but it was literally jam packed (I don’t think they believe in maximum capacities here) so we ended up just talking to a porteño by the bathroom (the only place there was room) and left before one.
Thursday was an IES field trip to Rodizio Campo (una estancia is kind of like a plantation farm where you can ride horses and see animals and eat LOTS of meat). It was raining most of the day so it was actually kind of boring. For the hour that it didn’t rain we juggled around a soccer ball and went to take pictures of the animals (hence the photo of the emu earlier), but otherwise we just sat around inside the restaurant type building and ate food and watched Lee kick ass at ping pong.
Friday we had two presentations at the IES center. The first was by Rosario who told us about how to get our visas, field trips, etc. I signed up to join the running club at UTDT (local university) so that way I don’t have to join a gym. I so smart. Then a psychiatrist came in to talk about culture shock, and how to get used to living here. It was interesting to say the least. Jaja. As most of you know I got my NOSE PIERCED! The place was okayed by my friend Cara, who was here last fall too. The guy showed us the unused needles and was very helpful. After a nap, Julia and I took a cab to Palermo Soho to meet some kids from IES for dinner at a Mexican restaurant. The address from the website was wrong so me and Julia had to walk quite a bit, not to mention I stepped in my first dog poo (it happens to everyone here—they don’t clean up dog poop.) But the restaurant was AMAZING. We had guacamole and chips and tacos and margaritas. So bueno. After that we did quite a bit of bar hopping. A guy brought us all to one of the clubs and gave us free cover and free pizza so that was awesome. I didn’t get home until about 6:30 that night. I was a zombie on Saturday. Jaja. Yesterday I didn’t do much other than have lunch and dinner with friends. Nora had her nephew and goddaughter over for lunch and they were very nice! Later I went to a restaurant with Julia, Bonnie, Kathryn and Alexandra and a couple of their friends where we ate empanadas and drank wine, and then went to a secret bar (so cool!) but I was still tired and by the time I got home at 5 I passed out. Aaaand I just woke up at 2:30. LIFE OF A Porteño! I’m glad classes start tomorrow so I won’t have to fill my time with as much clubbing and stuff. Save that for the weekends. : )
- The program doesn’t provide us with lunches every day or meals on the weekends. So I’m still getting used to what time is “normal” for meals. They only eat a very small breakfast but a very large lunch. And like I said before, dinner happens after 9 pm.
- Cabs, to Argentines, are expensive. But in reality I’m only paying about 30 pesos a ride, which is less than ten dollars, and I split it with other students, too. But tomorrow we are going to get a SUBE card which is basically like a Charlie card. I’ll be able to take a colectivo or the subte (which I haven’t braved yet) more often for cheaper.
- Laundry here is always done at a dry cleaners (lavadoras) for only 15 pesos (3 dollars?) and they wash, dry and fold your clothes.
- Julia and I have made friends with the man who works at the kiosk outside our building! We buy cookies and minutes for our phones from him. : )
- CREAMFIELDS is a giant electronic music festival in November. Of course I already bought my ticket. I CAN’T WAIT.
p.s. this post was hard to write because I forgot most of what we did this week, so shout out to Julia’s blog for helping me. I guess I’ll have to post more often!