Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Getting mugged

So as I rewrite what happened to me in the past few weeks I rely quite a bit on the pictures I took, however, the pictures end at the asado because on the following Wednesday I got mugged and they stole my camera. Essentially Tiffany, Ben, Michelle and I were walking from Plaza de Mayo to La boca, that neighborhood with the very colorful houses, which is actually a very poor neighborhood. They had warned us that it was dangerous, Pablo told us to not be too obvious (i.e. taking pictures) which we were, what they hadn't told us was that it was that dangerous. Apparently just about every Argentinian knows that if you go to La Boca (outside of the one touristy street) and you're not from that neighborhood you're going to get mugged. So we were wakling through one of the streets when one (or maybe two guys) kidn of hugged me from the side and made me fall to the ground, then they started yelling to leave my purse and I fought them for a while (it could have been just a few seconds but it seemed an eternity) then I thought to myself that maybe they had weapons (my family had been telling me all sorts of stories from when they had been robbed at gunpoint) so I let it go and they ran away. Apparently there was another guy chasing away Ben, Michelle, and Tiffany with a knife. I got up immediately and started screaming for help and a policeman started running after them and was able to follow them until they entered a building. So we stayed in front of the building for a while but I honestly couldn't remember what the thieves looked like, I had noticed them before but it was more of a general glance than a careful look. Then they took us to a police station and had us give our testimony. So I lost my Italian ID card (hopefully I'll be able to get a new one when I go back to Milan this Christmas), my camera, my purse, keys, license, a bit of money I had etc.

It was the first time that it ever happened to me so it was quite scary. Dopo non e' avevo paura di andare in giro da sola pero` ero decisamente piu' malfidente.

The only funny part of the whole incident was this policemen who apperently was quite impressed with our looks and started asking Ben whether we had novios, our phone numbers etc. and in the end Ben answered "no, they're all mine" jajajaja =D

Last two weeks - the second

Week Four
So on that saturday I went with my host parents to the art museum in Tigre, which the others had already visisted with San Andres during the week, I had skipped the tour because I was still a bit sick. Overall the museum has a BEAUTIFUL building, rebonito, but the collection is actually fairly limited and I thought the tour was rather boring, we only got to look at a few of the paintings and I think we were doing a bit too much analyzing for a tour (it's not supposed to be a college class). I'm happy I went there though.
That weekend I also went out for the first time at night, we went to a bar/boliche for Martin's cumple. I could legally drink so I got one of those drinks that's like fruit juice with a bit of whisky, but I didn't drink too much of it because I was scared that I was going to get drunk, don't worry, that didn't happen. I did dance a bit which is really strange for me, I tend to be very shy, so I'm actually rather proud of myself for that. So we got home at arund 4 or 5 in the morning, with a taxi drivers that told me the story of his life, I won't recount it here though, the most interesting part of the ride was when he told us "you see that building there, they used to torture people there" (wow). So then I got home, went to bed, and by the time I got up it was alrady time to leave to go to an asado at Christy's house. We had a lot more meat [once again] and then our host cousins and sisters started juggling.

The last 2 weeks

So I realize that I haven't posted in a very very long time, so here I am writing a summary of my last two weeks in Argentina. Since a lot has happened I'm going to cheat here and copy Christy's idea of writing the date and what happened on each significant day...thanks Christy! =D

End of week 2
So at the end of week two I started feeling much better so I went back to class, in total I only missed 2 days so that was all right. I had to follow a diet that the doctor prescibed, which is basically the usual hospital diet = rice, crackers, water, tea etc.

Week 3
This was birthday week, a total of 4 birthdays in only two days. The first three were on the ninth: Mark, Nate, and my host dad Marcelo, and mine was on the tenth. The ninth was also the Argentinian independence day so we didn't have class. In the end I stayed at home that day and we had an asado with my extended Argentinian family, there were Marcelo's mom and sister and Christy's family. The weather was quite nice so we ate inside but got to spend time outside trying to skateboard, my rather inexistent sense of balance prevented me from taking part in this activity so I took pictures instead. The meat was really good, and this time I did not try the blood sausage, and the dessert was even better: Dulce de Leche mousse with chestnuts. Oh and they had this sort of firework to put on top of the cake that was really cool =D jajaja
Then on thursday we had even more cake at San Andres and made one more wish.
That's something I noticed about Argentina, they eat so many desserts!!! Mery and Clara made at least 2 cakes a week! How do they manage to be so skinny?!?!?!
In the afternoon we went on a tour of the french-inspired buildigns in Buenos Aires, including the Brasilian embassy, the buildings close to the Vatican embassy, and a few hotels. Overall it was really interesting, though sometimes a bit hard to understand (mainly when she was explaining all the family feuds around that beautiful building next to the really modern (can I say ugly?) one, and the church behind them).

One more thing, cumpleanos is actually abbreviated to cumple, so they say "feliz cumple!"

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

After 1 week and 2 days

So my first week and two days in Argentina are over and I'm very happy to be here. The classes are not a lot of work so I have time to do other things and go with the others to the Centro de Buenos Aires. Unfortunately though I ate something bad the other day so I've been sick for 3 days now, it's not fun :( I won't go into the details but I have a bit of fever right now. So I've skipped two days of classes. Hopefully I'll feel better tomorrow.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Short Post => Pictures

Okay, so I'm too lazy to put up pictures here on every blog entry BUT I have put them online on facebook and here (=click on here!)

Monday, June 23, 2008

Days 2-3

The last couple of days have been fun. Yesterday I went to the Centro with Kendra, Nate, Clarke, and their brothers Tomas and Tomas. The center is huge, we just saw the CBD (gcse term for central business district), la Playa de Mayo, and a bunch of places along the way since we walked there from the train station. Then today we took the placement test and I placed into the advanced level which means that I'll be studying literature (yay!) I'm so tired of studying grammar! And then we went out to get lunch. And then I managed to get home without getting lost too much and by asking directions just twice. I'm kind of proud of myself actually, haha.

PS I was only able to upload the pictures to my facebook, I might here some later, it depends on my mood.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Day 1

So today I arrived in Argentina, after approx. 24 hours of travel and I met my Argentinian family. They're really nice! They have two daughters, a son, and a very old dog. And my room is really nice, with internet access and a beautiful wood ceiling with beams. My Italian/Argentinian cell phone is still not entirely working, I can call others and I can receive local calls but don't try to call me from the US because it won't work. My calling card also doesn't work, which using my boyfriend's terminology, kinda sucks...haha. Fortunately I can use facebook/messenger/skype to keep in touch with people.
This morning I struggled with a door, and eventually lost. Essentially I was home alone and this lady came by to deliver some vegetables but I couldn't get the door to open, even though the keys were right next to it. The main reason was that the hole for the key was much larger than the key itself so I thought that it couldn't possibly be the right one. I suppose a crosscultural analysis of keys is rather dull as a subject, but I will write about it anyways because I don't want to go to bed at 8PM. From my experience, American keys tend to be small and simple, the kind of keys that Italians would almost use for "secret" diaries (which by the way almost always use the same key, they're probably all made in China anyways) and maybe for mailboxes. Italian keys are either long and quite complicated or short and very complicated (in terms of holes and cuts and stuff). Argentinian keys (at least the oens for my house) look even smaller and more simple than the American ones...strange.
Then I went to Christy's house, met her family, and the cute little puppies (awww!) and then we all went down to the center of the town where I would have taken pictures if I hadn't forgotten my camera at home.
So yeah, I think I'll go to bed soon because I'm tired.
Tomorrow: trip to the center of Buenos Aires (yay!)

Monday, June 9, 2008



Bienvenidos a mi blog! Aqui voy a escribir sobre mis aventuras en Argentina. To introduce myself, I'm an Italian citizen/US permanent resident studying something at the University of Washington... and this summer [or is it winter?] I'm going to be studying in Argentina for five weeks (yay!) To clarify that "something" that I'm studying: I am technically in the business school, but I'm planning to change my major to informatics...and of course continue taking Spanish courses and start studying Russian.
Anyways, I'll update this blog throughout my journey...just don't expect it to be written in English all the time....Per adesso vi saluto e vi lascio con un bel filmato di Pablo Argentino to keep you entertained (or confused if you don't speak Italian) =D