Back “home” again!
Just got back from an extended weekend trip to Córdoba- no rest for the perpetual traveler, I guess! I was actually looking forward to having some time to chill in Mendoza after our 10-day trip to La Patagonia, but I couldn’t resist this opportunity. Argentina really likes to celebrate its feriados (holidays), so there are a lot of days off throughout the year- perfect opportunities for us “intercambios” to travel 😉 Anyway, we decided to head out for a 4-day trip to the “second city” of Argentina. My host family in Córdoba had just finished fixing up a spare apartment they have connected to their house, and when I told them we were coming, they graciously offered to let us stay at a discounted price! It turned out that we couldn’t have chosen better alojamiento (lodging). For me, it was wonderful because I got to spend some great quality time with the fam- our apartment was connected to theirs, so we saw each other quite a bit throughout our stay. And for my friends, it was a very different experience than what we’ve been used to (finding a cheap hostel and spending as little time possible there 😉 ). I was so happy to introduce some of my best friends from the program to the host family that had meant so much to me during my time in Córdoba, and everyone got along really well. I think Vicky was the most content, though- she had 5 new sisters for several days, and she definitely made the most of this opportunity!! She went from one girl to the next, clinging to them and showing them around the house- I think she was happy to have a few more girl playmates in the house for a change 😉 We spent a lot of time all together with them, chatting, playing Uno, sharing stories- they even cooked an asado for us on our last day there, and we ate enough choripan to last us several months!!
It was very refreshing for me to spend some good quality time with my first Argentine family again, and it was cool to show my friends what my month in Córdoba had been like. We explored the city for 2 days while I was there, and I got to be the tour guide for the group and point out my favorite places. I also got to explore a little more of Córdoba that I didn’t get to see in February, which was nice. One day, we took a bus to Villa General Belgrano, a quaint little town located 2 hours away in the Sierras (“little” mountains) of Córdoba. The pueblo looks more like a German village than an Argentine one, and it’s known across the country for its crazy Ocktoberfest celebrations in the spring. We walked around the town and got some beers (which were surprisingly bad, to be honest ) and then got on another bus to La Cumbrecita. In this pedestrian-only village, cars are prohibited, and the people are very conscious about preserving the natural beauty of la tierra (the land). We took a short hike to a nearby waterfall and marveled at the mountains that surround the village- they weren’t the Andes that we were used to, but they were still impressive nonetheless 😉 After 3 hours back on a bus, we arrived back in el capital and rallied to finally go out to a boliche- Córdoba’s known for its nightlife, so we weren’t about to miss out on that! We had a fun night at a club and then stopped at a McDonald’s to get some hotcakes for breakfast before going to bed around 8:30am- I guess you could say we’ve adapted alright to Argentine culture 😉
All in all it was a fantastic trip, and I was so thankful for an opportunity to return to a place that had been so special to me- cheesy, I know (in Spanish it’s called “cursi” 😉 ). Now I have another 2 weeks in Mendoza before we get another break, this one for a whole week… rough life, right? I’ll be going to northern Chile and Bolivia to see some amazing salt flats with some adventurous friends. I’m very excited, but I’m going to enjoy being in Mendoza for a little while if I can! Now it’s time to do a little more studying before taking another break- life here sure is stressful, so I need every one I can get 😛
Hasta el próximo,