Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Closing thoughts

Hey, just thought I'd throw one more blog in there.
I had an amazing time in Argentina! It was a wonderful experience and I have a few last bits of querky cultural knowledge to share:
- They don't have/know of rootbeer (but most know the word "beer" so they get really confused)
- McDonalds doesn't serve milkshakes
- They (my family) eat ribs with a fork and knife
And a few final upates from my end:
- I am still working on getting stuff sorted out from the robbery. It doesn't look like I will get ANY insurance money for ANYTHING that was stolen, but I will buy my dad's computer and camera off of him, and get a new ipod soon. I am out a lot of money, but thats what jobs are for, right?
- I miss Argentina like you would not believe. I miss everyone there too! I feel lazy being in the US where everything is in English. Everytime I think about talking to someone, I am a little bit hesitant because I forget that I can just use English...
- I plan on returning to Argentina for a semster starting in January of this year. Julie if you read this...I emailed you about staying before and never heard back. Therefore, I would like to begin discussing (as soon as possible) the options for winter & spring quarters.

Thanks everyone for keeping up to date on my life by reading my oh, so exciting blog!
It is a total relief not to have to write a blog any more! But it was fun having a way to keep yall updated.

Much love

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

I promise to catch you up later!

Hey all,

Yea, yea my blog has been a little neglected as of late, but here are the highlights.

School, felt a little sick, then BATMAN with my host mom, michelle, and her host mom monica. we got back suuuuuuper late.
Discovery of the day: batman is amazing

School, then reading and essay. Oh joy.
Discovery of the day: they don´t have squirrels here!

Lots of essay writing, have a paper due tomorrow. Still recovering from not feeling great the last two days. Despite that... I stayed up til 4 in the morning playing video games with my host brother and his friend.
Discovery of the day: lemmings should never have been popular.

School and then goodbye lunch. It was fun (and tasty! pizza, empenadas, and chocolate stuff), hung out with everyone and said goodbye to some. Bummed around afterwards with Martin and Majo... good times. Talked to Martin forever then headed home to work on my paper. Afterwards, I went out to Acabar with people from the program and Martin. Acabar is a sweet resturaunt with boardgames. Fun fun! You know I enjoy my boardgames...
Discovery of the day: supersized janga is a baaaaaad gets dangerous fast

No school! I woke up suuuuper late and then magically ended up in a car on the way to the beach with Mono! Yay! I didn´t think that i was going to get to travel after the program was over, but i was wrong!
After a very, very, very long car ride we got to the house which was FREEZING.
Discovery of the day: Mar del Plata is a big city! And is beautiful!

Saturday, very early morning:
The robbery. Most of you have details by now, if not I will give them to you later... I don´t have time to type it all up right now. However, here are the highlights...
At Mar del Plata, Mono, his 3 friends, and I were all staying in Monos cabin. At 3 am 2 men broke in to the house and threw us all in Monos room. They then shut us in the bathroom for 2 hrs, checking in on us occasionally. At first we thought they just had big knives, but they ended up pulling a gun and threatening one of our group several times. After robbing us very, very thurougly, they tied us up at knife point (i dont think ive ever seen a bigger knife) and left. We all untied ourselves with ease and went to the police(no one had phones, they were all taken, but por suerte they left the car). The police werent there...great, so we went to get coffee THEN went to the police. All in all, I lost my computer (all my pictures, my essay that i was working on, my music etc) my ipod, my new camera, 400 pesos and monos cell phone.
Discovery of the morning: People here really are serious about socks...the robbers gave me SOCKS when they saw i was barefoot... They were shocked that I wouldn´t be wearing socks.

Saturday afternoon:
The police came to the house and looked around. I went to nap...shocking, I know. A while later mono came in and said that we had to go to the police to leave statements. We did that, it took forever, and was HILLARIOUS. I was soooooo tired and my spanish was NOT working. I essentially played scherades with the police officer who didn´t understand ANYTHING that I said. We then went back to the cabin and met up with other friends that were at there too. We all ate and hung out. Mono and the other 3 in our group wanted to head back, but I didn´t want to leave without seeing the OCEAN, so I stayed behind with the other group of friends. We went back to the house to dump my stuff then went out to surf and skate.
We hung out at the cabin (the friends cabin, mono and the others were gone) and cooked dinner, talked, etc. It was quite fun, then we all went to sleep early.
Discovery of the afternoon: Apparently police stations arent always open

They told us it was late, but it was early...liars. We got up and saw ice outside...but surfing was still on. We went out to the beach and I sat in the car doing homework while others surfed. It was FREEZING. I had like 5 layers on (im not kidding) and i was still cold. On the bright side, i finished my essay. We then went out for lunch..dinner...stuff. It was tasty and the guy who owned the place was incredibly friendly. We then went BACK out to surf. I sat in the car, watching, and talking to those of the group who were smart enough to stay warm. They surfed until after dark, until they saw a seal and got scared out of the water (hahahaha). We then headed back to the cabin to pack up. On to the bus, on to the train, on to home.
Discovery of the day: If there is ice, surfing is still an acceptable option.

Woke up waaaaaay late and then went to San Isidro because the house was empty and I wanted something to do. I wandered around then came back home ( i had to jump the fence as i forgot my keys). Finally got access to a computer, then went out to American food with my host family. It was a blast. Mono didnt know about milkshakes, that was entertaining. It was AMAZING to finally eat a burger again, though the food here made me forget that I missed them.
Discovery of the day: My family here is wonderful and I am going to miss them!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Time Flies!

School was usual. I hung out around the house for the rest of the day doing homework etc. Chatted with family and life was good.
Discovery of the day: They eat bone marrow here!

Today was very much a repeat of yesterday, with one exception. When I got home, Vale came over and we hung out for a while. We enjoyed the amazingly warm weather and chowed down on dulce de leche and bon bons. Down side: The siphon attacked me while I was trying to open it. Bubbly water EVERYWHERE... then it happened to Mono. I went to bed at 7:30 pm.
Discovery of the day: They don't use/have frozen fruit here because a bag costs 100 pesos (33$)

Walking tour of death. I got up at 7, took a remis to the train, then the crowded train to downtown. We then walked around town looking at places that had to do with Eva Peron. It was actually pretty cool, and not really the tour of death...but my knee was KILLING me. It was all swollen and bruised and I don't know why. After the tour we ate lunch and I traveled home to meet Martin who had mistaken our meeting point and was waiting for me at the college rather than downtown :) On the way home Nate was dive bombed by some mutant bird that dropped and unbelievable amount of green bird droppings all over his back. By the time that I got to Martin (after getting moderately lost on my way back) I had walked/stood for 7 hours. My knee was very resentful of that fact. I hung out with Martin, then went home and took a nap. I was supposed to go to a tango show, but I didn't because I was exhausted. I stayed home and read for class.
Other random facts that fit in to the day: The group that I intended to stay with downtown was robbed at knife point. Everything is okay, but it was a mess. Poor them!
On a brighter note, I have decided to bake a cake w/ my sister Lulu. Their concept of cake here is very different from ours. So I am going to show them what cake is all about.
Discovery of the day: They dont use/have measuring spoons here! They think that it is a strange concept.

Went to class, came home. I then spent the rest of the day lounging around the house. I was hoping something interesting would happen near by (I couldn't really make the trip down to the Jazz club to watch Clarke...sorry!) but nothing was really going on. I kept pestering Mono, but apparently Saturday is Friends Day, which is as celebrated as the 4th of July at home, so everyone was building up energy for the excitement. At about midnight, Mono gave in and we went to a restaurant by the river and ate fries/ looked for the southern cross which we could not find/ looked at the city skyline which is less pretty than Seattle's but a WHOLE lot bigger. We rocked out to 80's music and spoke in Spanish, it was quite fun.
Discovery of the day: They dont know what frosting is! No, really...its true. Feel free to be as horrified as I was.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Quite the weekend

I got a migraine and left class early. After sleeping forever I got up and spent the day sitting around the house. I hung out with my host brother and cousins at night and life was good.
Discovery of the day: The puppy is coming back!

Hung out around the house today and then ran errands with my host mom. We went around to drop my host brother off at work, went to pick up the PUPPY, then went for tea at my host grandparents house. Afterwards, we picked up Lulu from work and her boyfriend from the boat (he came in from Uruguay). Afterwards, I spent a long time talking to Lulu and her boyfriend, and then we made dinner together. Lulu is a chef and was babying Gonzalo and me as we tried to chop peppers (I am a pro pepper chopper now), make guacamole, etc. The three of us and Mono then ate dinner then I went to hang out w/ my host Mono and cousins again. We were out until 7:30 in the morning - it was absurd. My cousins tried to pop popcorn by putting it in the middle of a cellphone circle and making all the cells didn't work... shocking. I met a bunch of new people and had a blast!
Discovery of the day: Popping popcorn in a convection oven starts fires.

After getting up at 10:00 (yes 10, i really did get NO sleep), I spent they day laying in the sun. The weather was AMAZING. I napped outside, I napped inside, it was a nap-filled day. Taylor got in from Washington (we both went to Capital, and now to UW), and found his way (amazingly) to my house. We hung out and my family fell in love with him. After tea time, and dinner (eating leftover Mexican food (mmmmm)) we watched part of King Kong with my host mom before leaving with Mono. We went to his frirends house for empenadas to celebrate a birthday. Taylor and I then left to go to Martin's birthday! We danced FOREVER then left and danced FOREVER elsewhere with my host cousin again. Everywhere closed at around 5:30 and we parted ways. I went with Mono and two friends to eat breakfast because by that time it was 7:00. Then I got home...exhausted...again.
Discovery of the day: King Kong is a HORRIBLE film.

Sunday is bbq day. Oh what a good day. 16 of us (host parents, cousins, aunt, uncle, sibblings, bfs/gfs of fam, and taylor) sat around in the AMAZING weather and ate huge amounts of meat and wonderful food. We were given hats to wear because it was so sunny, I even got a bit burnt. It was wonderfully fun. Many of the younger crowd stayed late and played playstation soccer, had tea time, dinner etc. I had to do homework, but I had several human dictionaries sitting all around me, so it wasn't bad. Wonderful weekend.
Discovery of the day: Juggling is contagious... when one person starts, anyone who can juggle instinctively joins them.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Meat party!

School, food, quality time.
Discovery of the day: meals here can last forever, you can talk over dinner for hours.

watching movies with my host cousin, host cousins gf, and host brother. However, I was lameHad class today, but no class tomorrow. To celebrate the lack of class, I intended to stay up late and fell asleep part way through the first movie...and slept all the way through the second.
Discovery of the day: Airplane is a good least the part that I saw was.

Happy Argentine Independence Day! I woke up and went to my host cousins' house for a bbq/birthday party/independence day celebration. It was wonderful. Sooooo much meat, soooooooo many pastires, soooooooo much family time. It was great. First we had lots of meat, then it was coffee time, then it was dessert time, then it was tea time, then it was dinner time. There was lots of skateboarding/video games/etc. mixed in. They tried to convince me to eat blood sausage again, but I wouldn't do it. They are cruel cruel people, but they make a WONDERFUL dulce de leche mouse.
After dinner, Vale and I had to do our absurd amount of difficult reading. My host brother was our human dictionary, but he didn't know all of it because a lot of the words were outdated and NEVER used. When an argentine college grad can't understand my homework, how should I??
Discovery of the day: My host brother makes a very convenient human dictionary

Sunday, July 6, 2008

A wonderful break

Uruguay was wonderful. The 3 hour ferry ride over was easy. The boat was beautiful and had really comfy chairs, so most of us slept almost the whole way (as we had to get up early, go to the train station, take the train, get to the dock etc all quite early in the morning).
When we got to Colonia, it was chilly (which gave me a nice excuse to wear my new jacket) but not cold by any measure. We wandered to our hostel which was adorable. We had 3 rooms in a really cute house-turned-hostel.


After dropping off our stuff, we began to explore. We ate lunch (really good pizza) and meandered through the old part of town with super old streets and buildings.
We hung out on a windy beach for a while, and enjoyed the scenery before heading to the lighthouse.

Beach & Lighthouse

Back at the hostel we rested and chatted for a while. We discovered our rooms were FREEZING. We watched The Negotiator before going out to a late, long, relaxed dinner.
After dinner we came back and hung out. We sang the national anthem just to be somewhat patriotic on the 4th of July.
Then we slept.
Discovery of the day: You can lock people IN rooms in our hostel... heh...Ben.

We woke up to wind. It was quite loud, but when we got outside the weather was INCREDIBLE. It was a BEAUTIFUL day. Perfect. After a long, relaxed breakfast, we wandered through parts of Colonia that we hadn't seen then headed to a beach.

The Beach

We hung out in the sun and the sand for quite a while. It was lovely. After picking up our stuff from the hostel we headed once again to the center of Colonia to get ice cream! So good. You don't even know. Yum.
Two of our eleven went to catch a boat while the rest of us headed to watch the sunset. It was absolutely amazing.

7/11 of us

We killed time before catching our boat by shopping around. After the 1 hr ferry ride, we were back in Argentina and in taxis on our way home. We were exhausted.
I got home and my host brother had a bunch of friends over for a bbq, so we all hung out until very, very late...because it is Argentina, and people here NEVER go to bed.
Discovery of the day: They have mosquitoes here year-round...

Woke up at like 3. Apparently my family had knocked on my door to get me up for a fancy lunch, but I didn't wake up. I did, however, get up in time for lunch. It was delicious. Spent the rest of my day doing homework, oh joy. Now I am about to go to bed.
Discovery of the day: When you sleep in until 3, there is a lot less time in the day for there to be a discovery of the day.

Love to all, family!
Feel free to email me, I love hearing from you!
Aunt Wendy, As you can see, I have been quite busy, but I will respond to your email soon! Thank you for keeping in touch!

Thursday, July 3, 2008

I'm bad at blogs

Hey family and friends, sorry I haven't been keeping up. Life has been busy.
Note to all others: I am not a blog freak! I promise! This obsessive detail is just to keep my wonderful family and friends up to date on my adventures since I can't talk to them!
Love to all!

My host cousin came over and he was TONS of fun to talk to. I hope he comes back, he was a blast. He is 15 and knows very little English.
Homework is slowly killing me
Discovery of the day: According to my host cousin the 3 best things to come out of the US are: Rock and roll, Coca-cola, and Star Wars.

I spent most of the day reading/talking to my host cousin who was still here. I have started the second book in a series I am reading. The books are horrible, but so addictive. So much reading! Between two lit classes and my book, if nothing else, my reading will certainly improve.
Discovery of the day: Puppies are less cute when they bite.

Read, sleep, eat.
Discovery of the day: I will never take 2 lit classes at once...ever again.

In an attempt to do ANYTHING but my presentation, I went on a very, very, very long run today. It was nice. Then I did homework. Lots and lots of homework. We had to read Los Mensu which was SOOOO confusing! My host mom helped me, she is wonderful!
Discovery of the day: I run a lot further when I am avoiding homework.

Went to the Tigre Museum of Fine arts. The building is AMAZING and gorgeous and wonderful and everything good and lovely in this world. I can't tell you that I was blown away by the art. Some of it was good, some of it was just sketches. My legs hurt all day from the run yesterday. Ouch.
Discovery of the day: Here, the price of 5 liters of beer is the same as the price of 1 bag of Skittles...

Did my presentation and it went pretty well. I then went to San Isidro with my host mom trying to get money out of the bank to pay for my housing here. While in San Isidro, I got a knee length black jacket and I LOVE it. Under 100$ US here, amazing. Then went to coffee with Martin and sabotaged his study efforts. EVERY coffee place here is a million times fancier and nicer than in the US. I had a 'submarine' which means hot milk that you melt a chocolate bar in to make hot chocolate. It was wonderful.
Off to Uruguay tomorrow, I'll be back with many pictures!
Discovery of the day: I can only take money from ATMs, banks won't give it to me.... that is irritating.
(Sorry Martin, you didn't let me take another picture, and the fam wants to see who you are! Besides, its a wonderful picture!)

Saturday, June 28, 2008

A few days worth of stuff....

We went out on a boat in Tigre and the weather was AMAZING. The flan was to DIE for, I have never had better flan in my life. I am still in shock.
Later that night we went out to take Tango lessons. Even if no one here dances tango, I still feel the need to learn it. The lessons were tons of fun and we are headed back next week.
Discovery of the day: Remises are a VERY handy way to get around.

Class was long and boring. I cannot for the life of me focus on one topic for 3 1/2 hours. Afterwards I hung out with Martin, a student from University of San Andres and we talked forever. Some people went down to see the madres de la plaza de mayo, but I wasn't really in the mood to take the train. While talking with Martin, I finally figured out my research project for while I'm here. I am going to be researching varying points of view taught and held on the "Dirty War." Apparently they don't call it the dirty war here...
Discovery of the day: Their keyboards are different!

No class today, but I still was at the school by 9:30 to head out to an Estancia. It is a tourist trap kind of place that 'preserved' old argentine culture. It was actually really fun (after the long, delayed by fog ride over). We ate TONS of meat, bread, chips etc. and watched people dance/play music. Afterwards we went out to watch horse competitions which were pretty impressive. We all made it home that night EXHAUSTED, so our plans to go out were delayed.
Discovery of the day: If I had lived long ago, a guy could have married me simply because he could stick a stick through a TINY ring while on a horse.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Sleepy sleepy

Hey all, I finally have a few pictures to show you! This one is of my host family (Mariano, Neky, Mono, Lulu, Marines). I have definitely enjoyed living with them.
Today was the first real day of class. I am taking two lit classes, I might have told you that already...but I'm too lazy to check. There is a LOT of difficult reading. Poetry doesn't agree with me in English.... in Spanish it REALLY doesn't agree with me, but the professor is fun so it is alright. We get to read stuff by Carlos Fuentes (wrote the Death of Artemio Cruz which was AMAZING) and Chronicle of a Death Foretold, which I have English. So that will be fun/challenging/a lot of reading. However, 3 1/2 hrs of ANY class is difficult to manage. Tomorrow I have argentine lit, I don't anticipate liking that class as much.
I currently have a sleeping puppy on my lap, which makes me unspeakably happy. My favorite puppy was taken away yesterday, but this one is much friendlier now that it has no sibblings to fight with. He doesn't leave until July 7th, so I have him for a while!
Ya sorry, a lot of that was a filler so that I could get far enough down to add another picture.
Ok, well it turns out that I can move the pictures around anyways, so there was no need for the filler text...terribly sorry.
These are the puppies. I still can't upload my own pictures because my computer doesn't read XD cards, but apparently Olympus is very common here, so my host dad is picking one up for me tomorrow.
The puppies were 42 days old when this picture was taken (the day I got here). 3/4 are now gone. The one closest to you was named Billy or gordito because he was pudgy and got pudgier every day. The one next to him was the only girl of the group. She was by far the nicest and my favorite. The next one was Brownie, he left first and looked WAY different from the rest. And finally, the one on his back is the one on my lap. Adorable.
I'm really tired and my throat hurts, so I hope that I'm not getting sick. It is flu season here and my host sister is sick (though not with the flu). Getting sick would be no fun!
Thats all for now...
Much love!

Discovery of the day (I almost forgot): Sweet potato jello (kind of...its thicker, like jigglers....) with cheese on top (yes, it is very common here) is DELICIOUS!

Monday, June 23, 2008

Catching up

Oops... I missed the last several days. Let's catch you (you as in, Aunt Wendy, Grandma, Mema etc, not as in "dear diary you have missed so much!) up, shall we?


Hung out all day then went out to a meat party with my host brother. Yes, a meat party. Kind of like a bbq, but it was inside cause it was cold....and they made non bbqish stuff. Then we played cherads (i know, i cant spell....the acting game), which i was unaware still existed. His friends were super nice, but talked at a million miles an hour. One girl spoke fluent English, she was very handy to have around.
Discovery of the day: Playing cherades in a foreign language is amazingly difficult.


Got back super super late w/ my host brother, time here is very strange. Apparently you go OUT at midnight, rather than coming back. As a result, I slept in until 3. I then spent the rest of the day reading. It was not a good book, but incredibly girly so I couldn't put it down.
Discovery of the day: They don't know what scrambled eggs are, they make omelets, nothing else. Everyone was very confused when I mixed up my 'omelet.'


Had tests and they tried to scare us in to being safe. I made it in to the advanced class, which I had doubted that I would do after being so lost at EVERYTHING that was said over the last few days. So, class starts for real tomorrow. After class, we went out to lunch with a student from the school, then I went with Tiffany to buy food/a phone card. Now I am home.
Discovery of the day: Garbage cans here are pretty little wire baskets outside of each house, and garbage is picked up every day.

Sorry to those who are bored of reading the dull details of my life, they are for my dear family who I can't talk to! Love to all, family!

Friday, June 20, 2008


Got up at like 3 productive of me.

Drove around all day w/ my host mom (for like 5 hrs).

The end.

Discovery of the day: In Buenos Aires, if a car can fit....there is an unspoken lane. The drivers here are insane....

Thursday, June 19, 2008


Well, Argentina in the winter is just like Washington in the spring, winter, fall etc.

Walked for 5 hrs in the rain after taking the train (o0o0o yea I took the train). Downtown BA is HUGE! There are like 10 lanes of traffic and I swear that people are game.

Discovery of the day: Cream cheese on toast is tasty.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

I'm here!

The flight was long, but I survived. It actually wasn't bad at all.

My house is lovely and I have my own bathroom and room. My host mother and her sister are WONDERFUL! I meet the rest of the family tonight.

Now I am going to shower and sleep, I've been up for well over 24 hrs.

Discovery of the day: They put dulce de leche on TOAST! Ohhhh life is good.

Friday, June 13, 2008

My first

Hello hello

Well, as I blindly follow the crowd, I have changed my blog from (which by the way is very pretty) to here. So, if you feel the need to absorb the true essence of my FIRST blog post about this trip, you can go there and find it. Either way, stay tuned...this is where the magic will happen.