One of my favorite things about living in Buenos Aires is getting to know my neighborhood.  Fortunately for me, I have lived in three different neighborhoods already so I’ve had a chance to explore several.  Just like in New York, everything you need is usually in a few block radius.  I’ve now reached the point where I feel like I have “mastered” my neighborhood.

The guys working at the fiamberia at my corner, which sells cold cuts, cheeses (and the Argentine version of bacon which I recently discovered), now shout “New York, New York” when I come in.   Caddie corner is the fruit and vegetable stand I discovered has THE best produce in the neighborhood. The guy who always helps me is from Peru and makes sure to select the best fruit and tells me what’s good that week.   I know which kiosk will actually give me prized “monedas” to ride the bus when I am desperate, and which always carries the cell phone calling card I need, and another that sells a carton of my favorite fresh squeezed orange juice for only 7 pesos. Read the rest of this entry »

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I went to Uruguay (yet again) last weekend.  It wasn’t a trip for pleasure, one more of necessity due to my still pending visa situation. I decided since I couldn’t convince anyone else to go with me that I’d make it a quick trip and not waste my day there. Just go drink what would end up being the most expensive cup of coffee of my life (the trip cost me about $80US) and come right back.  I booked the ticket on Buquebus, a more reputable boat company than the one I had traveled with before, hoping that I might avoid some of the trauma I had experienced the last time I went.  It had been a ride filled with men, women, and children, all either vomiting or holding cotton pads of alcohol to their noses to calm nausea as we passed through some rough waters, followed by us hitting something in the water at full force and half of the boat being asked to move to the other side to avoid us from sinking I presumed. no formal announcement was made that we were in danger and people took it upon themselves to put on their life vests, but when we arrived two hours late to a crew of about 10 people helping us all off the boat I knew something had happened. Read the rest of this entry »

Manantiales

I didn’t need to see any signs to know we had arrived.  I peered out my window and saw neat rows of tall gleaming apartment buildings that almost didn’t look real.   I was immediately reminded of Miami, though there was an air about things that also reminded me of Europe.  Everything was white, modern, pristine, and expensive looking.  It felt like a world away from the  decaying sidewalks and congestion I had just left in Buenos Aires. The air was fresh, the grass green, and the ocean (not chocolate-colored river) omnipresent.  I was excited for a long weekend out of the city and after a six-hour voyage between cabs, boats, and buses, I had finally arrived in what is known as the Hampton’s of South America – Punta del Este, Uruguay. Read the rest of this entry »

What is it like to live in a foreign country?

At first everything seems so different.  It’s a feeling that I cannot explain but the second I’m off that plane and out onto the street I feel it.  The smell is different, the sounds, the rhythm of life, the faces.  The cars are often the first thing I notice.  I take note of how small they are, how many more motorbikes there are, how much faster speeds they travel at. Then of course the street life itself; what people do in the street, what is the being sold, the shop signs, what is sold, how differently it is sold.

All of a sudden with no warning at all, I reach a point where I don’t notice these small things anymore.  Lately I have been feeling this way.   Read the rest of this entry »

I’m going to be 29 in three days.  Almost 30.  It’s got me thinking about my life and where I am going.  I have now been in Buenos Aires for just over six months, which I can’t quite believe.  Time has literally flown by.  And yet I live in a city that feels like it moves at the quarter the speed of NY.  I feel happy, more relaxed, and very satisfied with my life here, and I arrive home from a long day at work feeling energetic and alive.  I still cannot explain why and what it is exactly that brings me this happiness.  But it’s a good feeling.

When I left New York back in November I had no idea how things would work out, and had thoughts that I might be making a big mistake.  Read the rest of this entry »

It occurred to me the other day that it has been months since I bought even a single item of clothing here in Buenos Aires.  This is remarkable for someone who normally found herself on an mental high at least once a week in New York after a bout of retail therapy.  I certainly didn’t buy things every week but I was almost always looking and trying on in New York.

Despite my lack of actual shopping purchases, the fashionista in me hasn’t resisted familiarizing myself with some of the well-known brands here. Rapsodia, Wanama, Ayres, Akia Bara, Vitamina, Jazmin Chebar, Etiqueta Negra to name a few are now a part of my regular vocabulary.   Read the rest of this entry »

When in Rome, right?  The other weekend in Buenos Aires was one of the world’s most well known soccer classics – Boca Juniors vs. River Plate.  This rivalry is so intense it would be best described as fanatical, and I was set on being there for the action.  We woke up bright and early Saturday morning to pouring rain.  The game didn’t start until 2pm so I was hopeful it would stop before then.  At the last minute, I decided that even though probably not the smartest idea, I was going bring my professional Nikon camera to the game.  There had been too many moments in the past when I had hesitated to bring it places and then missed capturing an amazing experience, so I decided it was worth the risk.  I remembered a trick my dad taught me and grabbed two large zip lock bags and my waterproof Patagonia jacket on the way out.  We rode out to the stadium with rain pounding on the windows of the van, it seeming less and less probable that the rain would stop before the game.

When we arrived we found ourselves amongst a group of people standing near a training center close to the stadium. Read the rest of this entry »