I know this post is coming about a week or so late, pero mejor ahora que nunca.
I've successfully completed my first semester in Buenos Aires and I'm extremely excited for the second. I wrote around 35 pages of essays and had to take some difficult exams, but I did very well. I also wrote, what I think, a really great research paper on the International Monetary Fund's influence on Haitian rice growers. Thanks Holly for giving me that idea. Classes were definitely tougher than expected and the last two weeks was probably my most antisocial period of the entire time here. I was consistently in the library researching or writing a paper. However, this semester is all over, and now I have a month long break which I will be utilizing while I'm in Colombia! Next post.
It has been quite the experience so far. I really didnt have the intention of making a large group of American friends while I was down here, but, against my expectations, I made a group of amazing friends. Everyone is experiencing the same culture shock and feelings, and I think that because of this, stronger relationships are formed much quicker. Everyone is leaving or has left, and it's kinda sad not having my crew and thinking that I might not see any of them again. This next semester, I'll be able to concentrate on hanging out with my Porteno friends and speaking spanish, because I won't need that 1st semester safety net. On that note, I can't imagine having to leave Buenos Aires right now. I feel like the first four months were a nice introduction period. I feel very comfortable living and functioning here. I know how to use the subte(subway) and the collectivos(city buses). People can reference barrios(neighborhoods) and I know where they are talking about, and how to get there using several different modes of transportation. Exactly as Holly and Lindsay (my sisters who've both done study abroads) said, staying for a year in the only way to go. If you really have the ganas(desire) to learn about the country and learn the language, staying for two semesters is the only way to go.
All in all, it has been a great learning experience, and I'm sure it's only going to get better as I start my second semester.
Te mando un abrazo
Capital Federal, Buenos Aires, Argentina