Discovering Mendoza, day one
I just spent three days in Buenos Aires and arrived in Mendoza last night. My family picked me up at the airport and it was crazy like José said it would be. There was un motón of families, all frantically waving signs with our names on them. We were all extremely nervous, but it was pretty fun, looking back on it. We lined up and José called out our names then his assistant called out the names of our host families, who then appeared from the giant of the crowd at the little walkway, waving the card. My brother and sister were there waiting for me, excitedly waving a Nicole N. card, which was waved again today, by a neighbor who also has a student from our program when he took us out to see the park. (I live very close to the huge park in Mendoza.) This morning my host mom came home from a trip to a casamiento (wedding) in the north. I got to meet her, and her granddaughter, Mía, and her older daughter and husband. I ate a second, later breakfast with them and tried Maté ! which was pretty good, but nothing like what we call maté in the US. We drink it wrong you see. Here, you fill the little cup completely with the maté and it needs more water every 3 or 4 sips. Also, dulce de leche is delicious and goes well with this cheese they eat here on top of medialunas, or crescent rolls. After lunch, which was pizza and Arabic empanadas, our neighbor came over with Julie, another IFSA student and took me for a walk in the park. It was amazing. The park is beautiful and hey sell artisan crafts and food on the weekend extremely cheap. There is also a free aerobic class which we watched, and is hilarious and long. One moment there are three women standing around shaking to some music. The next, there is a huge crowd of over 50 women and an instructor is yelling Arriba! A la derecha! We played a little soccer with another student, Julie´s host brother and his girlfriend by kicking around the soccer ball in a circle. What fun! I think everyone in Argentina knows how to play soccer, at least better than I do.
Now, I am waiting to see what I am doing tonight. My host-sister is going to a dinner at a friends house that she invited me to, but we are waiting to hear from her friend to see if there is enough food that I can go. You see, it´s a special dinner. They´re eating conejo and the ratio is one rabbit for four people. I´ve never had rabbit before, but I figure if I had my first hamburger in my whole life in March and now I eat beef at least once every day, I can try rabbit in Argentina.