Shortly after my last blog post, I can’t explain it, but I finally felt connected with Argentina. I finally embraced my daily routine and things felt more normal than they did when I first got here. I feel like I have learned more about Argentina and its culture, and feel more like a local than I did upon arrival. It helps that in the past two weeks I have been teaching and learning much more about the night life in Argentina!
Last weekend I went to Rosario for the night/day with one of my friends from Canada de Gomez. Rosario is the third biggest city in Argentina, and due to it being a much bigger city than Canada de Gomez, they have more options for everything (which I have missed).
We went out on a Friday night, and I still can’t get over how different timing for night life is here. We went to a restaurant at 11:30 pm, had dinner at 12:00 am, and the happy hour was from 12:00-2:00 am… Crazy!
At 2:00 am is when they started clearing the dinner tables to turn the place into a disco (club). So bizarre to me! The clubs here are very similar to America, just different timing. The clubs always play American electronic music before 3:00 am (my favorite part of the night…), and then after 3:00 am the clubs here usually only play Cumbia music.
Cumbia is not everyone’s favorite, but everyone is used to hearing and dancing to it. This night it was especially fun because we were at an older club, and everyone was dancing Cumbia and trying to teach me how to dance to it.
The next day we walked around the city, saw the infamous flag memorial, and sat on a picnic blanket by the river to play card games and drink cold mate. It was a nice way to spend the day in the city. Cold mate was actually good and mate is growing on me.
I am experiencing staying in a small town for the first time of my life, and am learning certain things are open on certain nights. For example, there is a bar that is only open on Friday night so everyone goes to it, and there is a club that is only open on Saturday nights, making that the one place to go on Saturdays. I don’t understand why it has to be like this, but that is the way it is here.
The night life in Canada de Gomez is also interesting to me because at the Friday night bar I’m pretty sure you must be 18+ to enter, whereas the Saturday club you can be 15+. So, the Saturday club is much bigger because it caters to a larger age group.
Both places are fun! I just think it’s so weird to see 15-year-old youth at a club. They are so young! And also in the small town you can smoke inside these places, so you basically leave smelling like an ashtray which stinks, but other than that its a good time!
Aside from helping my teacher in the classroom, I have been going to a number of classrooms to be a guest speaker. It is also a way for the students to hear and practice English for a little bit, and for them to learn a more about American culture. I have mainly been going in classrooms that have older students because they know more English. Every time I go I introduce myself and then the students get the opportunity to ask me questions.
The questions they ask me are also so different than any questions you would be allowed to ask in America. The common questions I get asked:
The English teacher most of the time translates these questions to me, and each time I look at the teacher wondering if it’s appropriate to answer. The teacher usually stares back at me as eager as the kids waiting to here my answer. In America, kids would never ever be allowed to ask a stranger any of those questions.
These past two weeks I have been experiencing a normal routine in Canada De Gomez and have just been hanging out with the group of Argentinian people that I have become friends with!