Despite having previously spent 5 months living independently in Paris, moving to Buenos Aires was always going to be a bigger deal; the language barrier, the distance from home, the safety and the social life. After having to deal with rat infestations and missing suitcases in Paris, the thought of coming to Buenos Aires without a support system in place was very scary! Thankfully though, my university put me in contact with Road2 Argentina and it has been the easiest and most flexible option I could have chosen
As soon as I step foot off the plane, everything was taken care of for me. There was a driver there to pick me up from the airport, my accommodation had been arranged and the afternoon I arrived I had an orientation which instantly put me at ease. I felt so much more comfortable and ready to embark on my new adventure in Argentina. That week we also had a traditional Argentinian Asado. The meat was cooked to perfection and the view over Buenos Aires was amazing. It was such an easy way to meet new people from around the world and hear what other people had planned during their time in Buenos Aires.
My first asado was the first of many immersive events that Road 2 Argentina organized. Every Friday Mate and Medialunas was a highlight of my week. We would all meet in the park, along with many other Argentineans who congregate there after a day’s work, where we would drink mate, the Argentinean drink and try different Argentina cakes. This was not only delicious and a good snack before dinner but also another great way to meet more people and get closer to others I had previously met. It was such a relaxed environment which I really enjoyed. Thanks to these weekly events, making friends was never a problem. After being there a week, I was seeing most of the roadies outside of the weekly events and exploring Buenos Aires with them. I was also lucky enough to plan a trip to Patagonia with one of my friends off the program which was absolutely incredible and a trip I will never forget.
Although all this meant a lot of English speaking, living with 2 Argentinian girls in the apartment that Road had organized for me meant I was always forced to practice my Spanish. Although not always easy, I definitely felt an improvement within the first few weeks of being there. As well as this, speaking Spanish every day at volunteering was very beneficial and definitely the best way to immerse myself in the language and culture.
Not only improving my Spanish but also learning about a new culture has been so interesting and something that I think will be beneficial for life. Understanding the different ways in which people from different part of the world live is something I feel everyone should see. Learning to get on with different people from every corner of the world is something I think will be especially useful in future jobs where I will meet a variety of different people.
The past 5 weeks have been amazing. I feel so lucky to have had this opportunity to meet people from around the world, see and live the Argentinian culture, learn un poco de Español, party until the sunrise and eat empanadas and helado to my hearts content. I can’t wait to return to BA very soon.