Last night in BA. I’ve spent it working, recovering from last night’s goodbye party, organizing, and eating Chinese takeout.
I’ve gotten teary eyed a couple of times. I’m sad to leave. I’m realizing that a place can really touch you but also the people around you make a difference.
There’s still a lot to share, but I decided to do a summary of parts with some memories.
I learned how to roll my R’s. FINALLY!!! After 7+ years studying Spanish, living in Spain, Central America, and now South America, finally – and in an unexpected moment on the rooftop terrace eating dinner, out popped a new sound that I’ve been trying to make for yeeeaaaars! My host brother teased me years ago that I had a speech impediment and that people like me belong in therapy – if he only knew. I did it! Still I need practice and that I’ve been doing, but I finally did it!
The Christmas Package
My mom sent me a Christmas package. Thinking it would never have arrived not only due to the time of year but because the package contained food – Gram’s apricot bread and Aunt Renie’s cookies – finally on Jan 11 I got the notice. Since nothing in Argentina runs smoothly, I decided to arrive when the office opened. A long line of people and a 3 hour wait later, plus a second waiting room – one was to check in, the other was to wait for the package – finally it arrived. Smart, mom, for vacuum sealing them. My roommates and cousin Barry, and me, were all extremely happy! Worth the wait.
After 5 years of no insurance and not having gone to the dentist, I decided I would go here. An educated workforce, but still distrustful of unknown practices, I went in for a cleaning. I had to be rescheduled for a week later due to the machine breaking (as if I wasn’t nervous enough), but the dentist greeted me with a beso on the cheek, genial. 1 teeth cleaning, 3 cavities, bill total approx. $70 usd. Score! I’ll miss some of the costs of living here, including the $5 leg waxing and the dentist.
People, Greets, Dogs
People greet each other here on the street or at work with a kiss on the cheek. It’s the normal greeting, which seems strange at work, but also very nice. The people here are really friendly. In the city, nobody says hello or smiles on the street. However, if you stop to ask a question or talk to someone, they love to chat with you. Dinners and lunches last hours as people sit and chat. When walking in the store, you always look at the owner and say hello / good day / how are you.
Today I saw a lazy fat cat just chilling on the step outside of a restaurant. It’s amazing to me how the dogs and cats just do their own thing. Dogs, like the humans, don’t pay any attention to anyone, as nobody else on the street – like in the states – bends down to pet them. Animals seem well taken care of here and happy.
Upside Down in South America
Did you know that the toilet flushes the opposite way here? Or how about that instead of the Big and Little Dipper, I see Orion. Supposedly the Southern Cross too? Haven’t yet seen that one. It’s amazing to realize how much the world changes and how we are truly a round earth, not flat! We eat, walk, sleep the same but we see and experience different parts of the planet.
More useless ramblings to be added…