17 Jan

After a brief flirtation with a cold and a cough, I resumed Spanish lessons with Lidya, a caring older teacher with an eccentric outgoing personality.

As often with our lessons, the topic quickly changed from Spanish to politics and I asked Liday what the situation was like down here.

She actually laughed at me and it seemed like the question would go unanswered.

So I pressed on.

How’s the middle class here? Is upward mobility possible? What kinds of political parties are here?

It’s the same everywhere she said with a grin and with that I started to think.

Bergman once said he doesn’t travel because it’s all the same.  And to a certain extent, that seems to be really true.  I find myself drawing on comparisons often and thinking, hey, I’ve seen that before.   At the end of the day, we’re all just trying to meet ends meet and enjoy life as much as we can with family and friends.

But that seems too simple and I’ve taken great pains to find the subtle differences that separate our cultures.

Like school buses here are really small.  Small white cars that resemble something between a refigerator and a hearst come with very aggressive driving habits.  Argentinians love cafes and even car washes come equipped with trendy looking resto bars.  And most shops are independently owned with chains at a minumum.

Not all of these I found out to be true.  But this afterall is the fun part of travelling.

PS You can thank the “Che” biography I am reading for this introspective post…

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