First Culture Shocks in Argentina

Jordyn Mott
Majors: Spanish Education & English Education
Spring 2017 Semester in Buenos Aires, Argentina

Platform shoes.

Everyone is wearing them. To me, they are hideous. But they are everywhere. Even some with fringes. On young and old people. I’m either going to leave this country wearing them or hating them.

Greenery.

It’s a big city but it doesn’t have the cluttered feel like Chicago. At least at the airport. Yes there is a lot of buildings, but there are tons of plants on every porch. Even plants growing out of the wall in our apartment building (check out the picture below!) There are parks and trees and SUNSHINE. It sort of feel like how Florida feels; packed but spacious. 

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Plants growing out of the wall in our apartment building.

American Music.

The radio is playing American music. In English. I can’t imagine our bus driver, who doesn’t speak English, actually enjoys this.

Expressways.

I’m on an expressway and were going maybe 60 or 70 but it’s not like a US expressway. The roads cut right through grass, I mean there paved but.. Also, there are a ton of cars on the sides of the expressways. Some cars were parked on the sides and people were riding horses in the little field right next to it. Basically, all you would have to do is pull over and get out of your car and walk maybe 2 yards and ride the horse. US Expressways don’t really have anything but forests or farms on the left or rights of them. Not here. Park your car on the side of the expressway and you’ve made it to the horse farm!

Indoor Car Dealerships. 

The cars are parked indoors in these huge showrooms with a garage door like thing that is the front entrance right on the sidewalks of the downtown streets. It’s crazy but its something different that I really like.

Pouches.

Mustard and mayonnaise are served in pouches. The mayo has no hole and you just have to cut a corner off and squeeze it out. They also serve mayo with a hint of lime, like, thats how its flavored in the package… (But I love lime as anyone who knows me knows..) The mustard comes in a pouch but it has a little cap on it, sort of like the kiddie apple sauces that come in pouches.

Toilets.

They are not as luxurious as back home and the knob to flush them isn’t attached to them at all, it’s in the wall just above the seat. Peculiar. Also, they do not flush with power like in the US. For example, my first poop. Intimidating. We have one bathroom with just a toilet and one bathroom with a shower and a toilet (my host mom’s bathroom). I was getting ready to take a shower so I went poop in that same bathroom. When I tried to push the button to flush a TINY drop of water squirted out. That was NOT going to do the job. Naturally, I panicked. I kept holding down the button to no avail. Finally, I starting pushing the button repeatedly and water began to flow heavier. After a solid 25 pushes the toilet began to flush and my nerves were wrecked.

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