Mis sentimientos: !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

kathynguyen

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These last two days have been the experience I have been waiting for. The day before today, we toured all around Buenos Aires — to el Centro to visit the government houses, including La Casa Rosada, the Pink House, where la presidenta, Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner lives; la Boca, the most colorful town ever; Puerto Madero; Recoleta y Palermo. I hated going around to all the kiosks and booths wanting to buy everything, but telling myself that I should hold off until I actually get settled in and have time to weigh the pros and cons of buying a glass seltzer bottle to bring over to Mendoza. That night, we had a free night to go out and experience what a real Argentinian night should be: the ones that don’t end until right before class starts and follow the philosophy of “go big or go home.” Luckily, my friend, Josie, is living in Buenos Aires for this summer, so she treated me out to an authentic night at the mall where we got  alfajores, an Argentinian treat that consists of the rich  dulce de leche  squeezed between two cookies; and to the bar where I had my very first drink ever, along with  empanadas re ricos, amazingly delicious stuffed pastry. I learned some good slang and some tips to  sobrevivir  in my new home.

Tango Dancers in the Street

Tango Dancers performing for a crowd in Buenos Aires, where Tango was born.

I ended that night early. No staying up till 5 in the morning for me, because we had to start the next day at 8 a.m. I know some of the kids on the program did, however. Crazy flacos. The next morning we toured a bit more around Buenos Aires, hitting some high-end neighborhoods with beautiful buildings, and once again, more things being sold that I had to resist from buying. I spread around a couple new  frases  around the group: super(insert adjective here; i.e. cool, cute, wow) (pronounced  soo-perr_____; gool, ky-oot, gwow), awesome-o, and estickadores. The best part was toward the end of the day I heard super___ all over the group. I felt supercool.

We left the city of Buenos Aires and the next thing I knew, I was walking through the much-anticipated “sliding doors” … and then José, our resident director, calls my name … and there she is … my host mom excitedly comes up and we perform the famous European kiss the air on the cheek gesture (and I did it correctly, thank goodness), and then she mentions that my friend, Elizabeth, will be my neighbor. And as Elizabeth and I nervously clambered onto the car, we watched the beautiful Mendocino scenery pass by as our host moms asked us plentiful questions about our lives and our preferences and how we feel.

I can’t express how much I love my new mom and dad; my little sister and brother (Luciana, 6-years-old and Facundo, 8-years-old); Cute (la perra en mi casa); my new room; my neighbor who is my mom’s sister and is hosting one of the girls in my program; Mendoza,  my new home. I have my own bathroom and my room is more than I could ask for — it’s huge — and everything’s super charming. And my host mom is the best person to talk to. She is super understanding and hospitable and simpática and I love her.

I know, everything sounds very chaotic, but this is just exactly how I feel right now. My host mom along with Luchi y Facu took me out to see el Centro, la Plaza, and to eat gelato :). It was such a wonderful night.

And I think I’m finally feeling it. I’m in a different country — and oh crap. I have to speak Spanish for the next five months of my life. I’m not home, I’m living in a completely different house with different rules and different surroundings. And I know it will get worse. The beginning of culture choque, much? Sí? But you know, tomorrow my mom’s taking me to see the city in daylight and spend a day there. I don’t even care much about all that culture shock crap right now (it’ll be back eventually). I’m just going to be excited for now.

 

To see more about my adventures, visit my other study abroad blog that has a “Foto del día,” Photo of the Day!
http://kathyinmendoza.tumblr.com/

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