Tag Archives: Buenos Aires

First day in Argentina

So folks, I have FINALLY arrived in Buenos Aires!

So here is how the day went! After packing all 29Kg(63 lbs) of my things in my suitcase I headed to Berlin Tegel Airport. I had my flight booked with British Airways, so I was supposed to fly from Berlin to London then directly to Buenos Aires. I was a bit concerned when I saw that my connecting time in London was only 1 hour considering it’s the biggest airport in Europe! When I arrived, they told me the flight was delayed and there’s probably no chance I would make the connecting flight in London. I was instantly disappointed, but they assured they could book me onto a Lufthansa flight, which shocked me since they aren’t even in the same alliance! So that is what I did, they booked me over Frankfurt instead which gave me more time to make my flight, and Lufthansa is a great airlines so I can’t complain.

Once I got to Frankfurt I looked on the screen for my flight and saw a one hour delay. Damn. So I went to the desk anyhow and requested a window or aisle seat and got lucky with an aisle seat! I sat down in the gate area and almost everyone was speaking Spanish! There was even a sports team from Argentina sitting in a group laughing and drinking Mate(a very popular drink in South America). After waiting a while they assured us our plane from Hong Kong had arrived but that it was broken and would not fly! But the good news is that they had another plane for us, but our flight was delayed another hour! Finally around 1 AM we took off and headed out on our 11,200Km (ca. 7000 Miles) 13 hour journey! As we approached Buenos Aires I saw the beautiful Rio del Plata out of the window, and then the city. At that instant I had a culture shock, WOW this city is huge! It’s never ending and all close together, so intense I wish I had taken a picture!

After landing all the Argentinians clapped their hands, something I had never seen on a plane before, but I suppose it’s a cultural difference! As I walked off the plane I was reminded that its winter here now! It wasn’t too bad, but definitely a difference. We went to our passport check lines and there was a special one for Australians, Canadians and US-Americans. Unfortunately since we make it so hard for people to get into the US, they have set up a fee for us to pay when we enter Argentina! So I paid 140$ to get in, but the women told me it’s good for 10 years and was actually friendly about it.

Off to the baggage claim, it took a long time and it was a huge unorganized mess. Once I finally got my luggage I waited in a huge long unorganized line for an hour just to show that I don’t have anything to declare at customs. I met an American man from the bay area (what a coincidence) as a flight from San Francisco/D.C. had just arrived near ours. We talked in the line then immediately walked over to the Remise (private car taxi) desk. People from each stand were trying to get our attention “taxi?taxi?” . So we both booked a taxi and then looked for the ATM. A nice guy working for the company assisted us to the ATM and held our suitcases and then took us to our cars. I said bye to the American and got into my car. The driver was nice but crazy, after 10 seconds of driving we almost got into a car accident and he started making faces at the other driver! Then we waited probably 20 minutes to get out of the airport and off we went. He drove quickly and I looked out the window and texted my dad that I was alright. There were decayed buildings all over the place and old cars that looked like they shouldn’t be on the road. The apartments were so close to the freeway, literally 2 feet away. Once we got to the city center it started reminding me more of Spain but slightly dirtier.

I got to my hotel and the ladies at the front desk were very friendly to me. They gave me an adapter to keep for my plugs and offered me some of their pizza. It looked so delicious but I kindly declined. I got to my room and took a siesta, a shower and then watched some TV. In the evening I headed outside to get some food and bottled water and walked around the streets here. Mind you, the bread sticks I bought were probably the best bread sticks I’ve ever had in my life! A good word to describe this place would be “intense”. People are walking all over the streets, cars are driving crazy, alarms going off and sirens as well. Many of the sidewalks are broken and the buildings look old and falling apart. The market was small and things were displayed differently. It’s hard to explain but let’s just say it wasn’t as clean as any supermarket I am familiar with. None of these things are bad though, I find it very interesting and new. I am totally excited and motivated to see more.

When I returned to the hotel I rested and heard a weird sound so I looked out my window. There was a talking car driving by! It was literally a car with a speaker on top. I assume it had something to do with elections coming up and for somebody’s campaign. Later in the evening a woman my dad will potentially do business with gave me a call. She lives in Cordoba where I am headed later today to spend my first month in Argentina. It’s such a good timing coincidence that she contacted us right before I move to her city. She was so nice and said that she will come to the airport today to meet me even though I am already getting picked up by my agency. She wants to introduce herself and give me her contact information and show me around Cordoba this weekend and introduce me to all of her friends and nieces who are my age. I was shocked but flattered by this. I don’t think I have ever experienced such hospitality in my life! People are so nice here so far. I am looking forward to seeing how the rest of my time will go. Now I must prepare to head to Cordoba. That’s it for now!

A quick view out my hotel room window


Why Buenos Aires?

Many of you are probably wondering why I chose Buenos Aires for my internship. So I have decided to make a list and explain why.

1) I want to improve and master my Spanish! Why not Spain? explanation below!

2) I want to get out of Europe, North America and see a new continent! This world is too big and beautiful to miss out on.

3)There are many Spanish speaking countries in South America, but I want to learn the Rioplatense dialect! I find that this dialect of Spanish is absolutely fantastic!

4) Buenos Aires is the Capital and largest Metropolitan in Argentina with about 13 million inhabitants. I love big cities, so much to see and do!

5) Ive heard that Buenos Aires is considered the “Paris of the south” or “the most European city in South America” and I feel like it would be a good idea to “ease into Latin America” instead of having a culture shock to death 😉

6) One last word: TANGO!!!

Thanks for reading ! xx

Taking an “Urlaubssemester”

What is an ‘Urlaubssemester’ you might ask?
Well in German, “Urlaub” means vacation;holiday, and “semester” is of course the same as in English.
So yes, I am taking a “vacation semester” off, although I’m not going ON vacation 🙂
As many of you know, Ive lived in Germany the past two and a half years,and the last year and a half I have been studying International Tourism here in Berlin, for my Bachelors degree.
Since i was crazy and decided to take the hard way out, by studying in another language, I have had some challenges. Ive done well but every semester so far I have had “Nachprüfungen”, better known as “make-up exams” in English. In the German school system if you fail an exam you have 2 more chances to take it and pass it. If you have to take the exam the third time, the highest grade you can get is a 4 (a D by American standards). If you fail your 3rd time you cant go on with your semester.. you have to go back to that semester and re-do JUST that class…which is nonsense..
But dont be scared for me, this DIDNT happen in my case 🙂
The 3rd semester was one of the hardest times of my life. It was winter, dark, cold, and we had about 17 different classes. A total of ca. 35 hours of class a week!! Pretty much a full time job. I had a few exams I had to make up from the 2nd semester..that continued with me during the whole 3rd semester. Luckily by the end of it I had passed everything (throughout the 4 months of the 3rd semester). Due to asthma,stress and other things, i didn’t do as well in the 3rd semester as I had hoped.
I came to a mature decision myself and decided I want to re-do my 3rd semester and take it slower. I mean after all, its crazy at all that I study 100% in German! Ive done well so far, but of course I run into obstacles. In the end of October I will begin my 3rd semester again,with a new group of people, a few months rest/internship experience, and a better grip of the subjects! I am motivated! 🙂 The professors also praised me on my “wise” decision, and I am thankful to have their support as well as from friends and family!
For the next few weeks I will be in Berlin, perhaps doing some side jobs for some extra cash. Then at the end of June or beginning of July I will be headed to SOUTH America! Buenos Aires, Argentina to be exact. For a few weeks I will take an intensive Spanish class then I will do a 12 week internship. I will be working for a Tour Operator called Say Hueque where I will be organizing personalized tours through Argentina and Chile for Independent travelers, handling English and German speaking customers, and helping write the travel blog for their website! This job sounds PERFECT for me I could not be happier that I got this position and I am very much looking forward to it. As I am not that much of an experienced blogger, this blog will be good practice for me, and also keep everyone whose interested, updated on what I am up to!
Thank you for reading