40 Days in Buenos Aires

Another 10 days bites the dust! Time is flying by down south in Buenos Aires. I am nearly a third finished with my entire study abroad. Reality is finally beginning to set it, yet I am feeling extremely positive about my trip and the remaining 110 days!

On Saturdays, my goal is to satisfy my cravings for Asian cuisine. On August 20, I met Hannah, Haley, and Grace at the Juramento Subte Station. Together we walked a few blocks down to China Town and headed to Lotus Thai Neo, a restaurant with high Pad Thai ratings on Trip Advisor. I ordered the set lunch which included red tea, squash soup in a coconut milk base, beef + chicken + shrimp pad thai, and vanilla ice cream with honey. This meal made me feel at home with some of my favorite flavors. I thanked my friends for indulging me in my favorites even though Thai wasn’t their first choice. This lunch made me long for meals with Virginia & Nancy, two of my closest family friends in Lincoln, because together we have shared many dinners of pad thai, Virginia’s homemade squash soup, and the best conversations regarding books, current events, and life.

I returned back home after my delicious lunch, and I spent Saturday evening catching up on homework. I also took a few hours to live vicariously through all of my Chi Omega Sisters who were celebrating Bid Day at UNL. Camp Chi Omega was the adorable bid day theme, complete with s’mores, trail mix, and Chacos. Missing out on special days like bid day make it a little harder to be so far away from home!

Sundays are for Brunch! In the morning on August 21, I woke up and got ready before heading to the Subte station. I was headed toward San Telmo to meet Haley and Grace for brunch at Hierbabuena in San Telmo. We didn’t make a reservation to sit inside, and because it was a little too cold to eat outside, we ending up leaving and venturing across the street to Bacán. At Bacán, I ordered the unsweetened lemonade slushy which contains ginger, mint, and lemon juice. I ordered an entrée of smoked salmon upon a small pancake served with a soft-boiled egg and an avocado paste. Following lunch, Grace, Haley, and I headed down the street to the San Telmo Market. We walked the entire length of the market looking at antiques, foods, and different souvenirs. We walked around five miles until we finally reached the Plaza de Mayo Subte station. I said goodbye to my friends, and I made a quick detour to try an Argentine McFlurry on my way home. I was extremely disappointed to receive a cup of soft serve vanilla, with a little hot fudge and Kit-Kats on top. That is not how McFlurries are supposed to be, McDonalds! Over all, I had a wonderful Sunday full of good friends, food, and activities in Buenos Aires.

On Monday August 22th, I woke up, ate eggs and a banana, and headed to the gym. Upon returning from the gym, I grabbed a quick lunch at Fitz Roll, my extremely cheap organic Chipotle. I have learned that in order to have a quick encounter at Fitz Roll, I must wait in line before the shop opens at noon. Fitz Roll is very trendy and popular, and everyday, there is a line waiting for burritos before the doors are unlocked. I arrived early, and after waiting only ten minutes, I found myself back home with my lunch. I ate my burrito in bed with a little Orphan Black on Netflix before taking a quick cat nap (the cats, Dharma & Om like to nap with me too). Well rested, with a full belly and happy heart, I headed to the first day of my grammar class at FLACSO. I arrived to an empty classroom and quickly realized that the class had been canceled. It was a sign, that I really should not take classes on Mondays! I dragged myself back to the Subte and back home to Palermo Hollywood. The day was concluded with a nice dinner with Alexia and Tony before heading off to bed (and Orphan Black).

On Tuesday, August 23th, I was able to sleep in because my morning volunteer seminar was canceled. I took advantage of the opportunity to wake up, cook breakfast, and get ready very slowly. I went to go get lunch before class with three other students in my program: Leah, Gabe, and London. We went to Parva a little bistro that other students have been suggesting for weeks. I ordered the Thai Chicken Wrap, and because I forgot to take a picture myself, enjoy this marketing image from the Bistro’s website. Following lunch, I had five hours of class straight through: three hours of Bodies, Gender, and Sexuality & two hours of Writing Workshop. Bodies class passed by faster because we viewed Clandestine Childhood, a film about a child raised by guerrilla parents in the 1960s in Argentina. Before my Writing Workshop, I ate a quick snack and drank a double shot latte. The class itself is pleasant, but working for five hours straight is trying. Following writing class, I took the subte home, and I arrived just in time to eat dinner with Alexia and Tony. We enjoyed Milanesa together as a family, and then, as usual, Alexia and I talked while I did the dishes. I insist on doing the dishes every single night. It is one of the easiest ways I am able to contribute while living with them! After the dishes were finished, we all returned to our rooms for a little Netflix before bed.

On Wednesday August 24th, I also had a busy day of school. I woke up early, cooked a quick breakfast, and headed out to the Subte by 9 a.m. I squished myself into the can of sardines that is the Subte, and thirty minutes later, I arrived at the Callao station near FLACSO. At 10 a.m. I had my Human Rights in Argentina Class for three hours. Directly following Human rights, I grabbed a quick coffee and snack on my way to my two hour grammar class. By three in the afternoon, I am done for the day. I headed home exhausted from such long classes, and decided to treat myself with a few desserts. I had been eyeing a pastry shop “En el nombre del postre”for a week, and I finally gave in. I chose four macaroons: Chocolate, Raspberry, Lemon, and Dulce de Leche. I went back home to enjoy my sweet treats and unwind before dinner. On Wednesdays, my host sister Tony spends the night at her grandmothers, so it was just Alexia and me for dinner. We ate raviolis and talked about our days. We always end up discussing our life philosophies as well. We then both headed off to continue our Netflix binges.

On the morning of Thursday August 25th, I had a seminar at Universidad Católica Argentina which is located on the far side of the city. I used the app Como Llego, which I use nearly daily, to figure out the quickest way to reach the other side of the city. Once at the seminar, I ran into Kira, Paige, and Hannah from my volunteer class. We sat through one hour of the seminar on Service Learning before grabbing a medialuna and coffee and heading out the door. I ran back across town to grab a quick lunch and nap before returning for my conversation class. Normally, Thursdays will be a lot calmer and not require four hours of travel back and forth on the Subte.

On August 26 I woke up and made the egg-in-hole (hole in the middle of the toast) breakfast. I then sat in the kitchen pondering what I would do on this Friday without class. I decided to begin by attempting to poach an egg. After failing and making a sort of egg drop soup, I moved upstairs and continued season four of Orphan Black, my current Netflix binge. I took a break to head out in search of a fabulous Brunch. I ended up at Pani a fabulous cafe a few blocks from my apartment. The owner of the cafe greeted my at the door and helped me chose what to eat off the menu. She was very eager to practice her English and checked on me frequently during my meal. I returned home after lunch, and took a quick nap. I was woken up by a Skype call with Andy Ngo and Meg Abbott, two of my favorite Chi Omegas (Andy is not actually a Chi Omega but definitely identifies as one). It was great to get an update on how life was at Chi Omega and in Lincoln! In the evening, I ate dinner with Alexia and Tony, and then we headed to blocks over to Freddo Gelato. We were celebrating the perfect report card that Tony had just received. After a little Dulce de Leche and Strawberry Gelato, we headed around the neighborhood so that Tony could try out Pokemon Go! This occured at about ten at night, so the streets were full of young people with beers in their hands. Alexia and I followed Tony closely as she weaved through the crowds and caught three pokemon! Friday night was awesome; I love spending time with my host family.

Saturday was a very cold and rainy day in Buenos Aires! On August 27th, I hid away to catch up on twenty days of blogging, emails, and homework. After my normal breakfast, I watched the final episode of Orphan Black on Netflix (S. 4, Ep. 10). I filled my afternoon with Grammar, Conversation, and Writing homework. After a quick break for a mixed veggie torta, veggies, and dulce de leche, I went right back to homework. This is what rainy days were made for!

Brunch occurred as usual on Sunday August 28th. I returned back to Pani, my new favorite cafe in the city. Hannah, Haley and I all ordered red berries and cream waffles, and then I decided to grab one more dessert on the way out. I bought a slice of a giant chocolate chunk, caramel, and marshmallow cookie cake. The cookie cost more than my lunch, but it was delicious. It is hard to compete with The Cookie Company in Lincoln though. The rest of Sunday, I worked more on homework and hung out with my host family. We shared a big bowl of chicken nuggets for dinner, with a side of sour cream and onion chips and Coca-Cola to drink. It was probably the most unhealthy day I have had so far, but also nice to indulge a little.

I woke up very late on August 29. I had trouble sleeping the night before because I was so excited to try all of the restaurants I had been researching. I decided that my craving for Korean food was so strong that I had to go try out Bi Won. I took the Subte for 30 minutes in search of the restaurant, and when I arrived, I was the only customer. I order Dolsot Bibimbap with Jazmin Tea. Dolsot means that the food is searched in a hot stone bowl. The bowl contains beef, seaweed, veggies, rice, chili paste, and a raw egg that cooks inside the bowl. I was also brought six sides in smaller dishes that included squid, mushrooms, pickled veggies, tofu, and a few unknown things. I was in love after the first bite. It was the best Korean food that I have ever tried, not that there are a lot of options to try Korean food in Lincoln, but I had tried it in Madrid as well. I ate until I was stuffed and then walked five miles home to work off some of the rice I had consumed. I returned home still stuffed and took a quick nap with the cats. Before dinner, I fit in a quick workout at the gym. Alexia had told me the day before that she was going to cook my favorite dish: lomo saltado. This dish is extremely flavorful, it is full of spices and contains steak, tomatos, red onions, and is served upon rice. Alexia learned to cook this dish while in Peru, and it is absolutely amazing! After dinner, I helped clean up the kitchen and then headed to my room to finish a three page essay for my class.

Another awesome ten days have passed in Buenos Aires. I am still very happy to be living in this city, especially when I stop to count how fast time is flying by, I know that it will be over so quickly. Thank you again for reading and sending love to me while I am so far away! I will continue being safe while experience the porteño life. Until next time… more updates to come!