Beginning in Buenos Aires

I’ve been in Buenos Aires for 2 weeks now!!!!! The minute I stepped off the plane from very very chilly Newark, I was hit by a wall of 90-degree heat, which is now the new normal. What an amazing place this is. Last week, I spent a week exploring Buenos Aires, and then two days in Uruguay, enjoying the ocean breeze and sitting on the beach. I’ll for sure be heading back there as soon as I can to escape the city heat, as it only takes an hour and a half via ferry to get to Uruguay, and from there you can rent a cheap car and drive it all the way up the coast. I love road trips like that, with the freedom to stop or detour anywhere you want, with the windows rolled down, barefoot, listening to the radio. So cliche, but I think there’s a reason for that, right?

The CIE program officially started last week, with language classes and cultural activities almost every day. It has been a whirlwind, but I think that’s just what you need when you first start settling down in an unfamiliar place. You get to see a little bit of everything, under the comfort of just following around program directors in a group, free of the worry that tends to come with solo-ing it. We went to a beautiful (albeit touristy) estancia this past weekend and spent the day wandering around the place, seeing – and attempting to talk to – all the animals there: parrots, an owl, bunnies, all kinds of chickens, peacocks, donkeys, and lots of horses. We spent the day eating classic gaucho food, parrilla, empanadas, etc etc. There was a show of all different kinds of dances, music, instruments, and traditions.

I’ve only seen a glimpse of what’s here so far, but at this rate I think the semester is going to be rich in discovery of new things. Here’s to another 5 months of being challenged, conversing in a new language, meeting completely different people, growing up a little bit more, and just appreciating every moment for its unique worth.