santiago del estero
hello sorry for taking so long to post anything. i have not had much access to a computer. it has been a week since i said goodbye to my parents and met with my AFS group in Miami. In Miami I met kids from throughout the country and formed a crew (def possy) from washington state, conneticut, vermont, new hamphire, wisconson and of course california. In our orientation we heard rules and learned cultural facts about the countries we were going to be spending the next year or 5 months (brazil, argentina, panama and honduras). After watching planes take off from an emergency stairwell we headed to the airport. After several hours of waiting in a blob of blue AFS shirts, we got in line at around 11 pm to board the plane. This is when one of the boys noticed a man from he had seen on tv. We suddenly realized that the cast of those real world challenges was boarding our plane. a few of us went up to talk to them, finding it very funny that these ¨”semi” celeberities were boarding the same plane as us. For those of you who do not know what this show is (most of you), it is one of those crappy mtv reality shows where people that used to live together and do stupid things now live together again but they now compete in physical challenges in order to win money. Late at night when you flip through the chanels this is what you see. After taking our advil pms, we were all in a state of confussion. I quickly fell asleep. The next morning we arrived in Buenos Aires. We immediatly were sent to the AFS Argentina orientation. In which we learned more rules and customs of Argentinna and met kids from all over the world. We had a country talent show and there was a lot of dancing involved. Saturday night we left for the bus station were we once again sat for hours waiting for our buses to arrive. Finally the bus came for me and three other students. Another american boy, a boy from thailand and a girl from germany. We would spend another night on a machine travelling at least 40 mph. On the bus we met a nice man who we talked to for about two hours. We then learned that the seats recline all the way back and soon after fell asleep. Sunday morning we arrived in Santiago Del Estero where I was met by my host family and some of their friends. We then took a taxi home and I unpacked my suitcase. I share a room with my host sister. It is extremly hot here but nice. The very first day I arrived we had mis abuelos (grandparents) over for lunch which is the most important meal of the day. Later I attended a quincinera with my sister and two of her friends. There I met more than thirty of her closest friends. They all yelled for about two hours after meeting me. There was dancing and food and many people trying to speak english. Since then every night the whole family goes downtown for one reason or another and we always see people they know, even though this is a pretty large city. Every one is always out at night in el centro, where everything is happening. The center of the city is very nice. I do not start school untill monday but I am already starting to get used to the sleep scheduele. This is a typical week day; breakfast at about 7 30 which is only tea or cofee and maybe a little bread, then school or work and then everyone returns home by 1 30 for lunch at about 2. Next you either sleep or relax somehow. Later at about 7 we all go out, either down town or to friends houses and then we all return at about 10 and eat dinner around 11. Then telenovelas or reading untill we all go to sleep around 12, 12 30. I am already learning a lot of spanish because my host family knows no english. So far everything is great. I really like my host family and think things will only get better. O hope everything is good with all of you. As they say in Argentina, chau.
the big city—buenos aires
Argentina for 5 months. I am writing this the night before I leave, monday night 11:51. Honestly, I am becoming more and more anxious and nervous. The excitement is staring to fizzle as I leave my friends and family behind. I can not imagine not going to cronkite (and being in the snow globe of ravines), or not eating bistec sandwiches with their tasty sauce and not siting on the sunny comfort couch watching crapy reality shows. Leaving mill valley-marin-the bay-california-the u.s. will not be easy. I will try and keep in touch as best I can. Hopefully this un-real feeling about my departure will soon pass as well as my sudden state of melancholy. However, I am very grateful to even have this opportunity. It is a wonderful thing and no matter how sad I am about leaving I know in the end I will be very fulfilled and glad I went.