Sunday, April 5, 2009

Life At The Margin Heads for Buenos Aires

A couple short flights from Seattle and now I live in Buenos Aires. In a few months here I hope to learn the language, improve my tango, and simplify.

In a few days here I have learned the following:

1) Though I thought I would buy a cheap bicycle to get around the city, I realize that I am not yet emotionally qualified to bike in Buenos Aires. I can barely make it through some of the cab rides.

2) In Spanish, the word 'pare' means 'stop;' however, when written in big white letters and put on a red octagon on top of a pole, it apparently means something else.

3) A short blast of a car horn means something like "yes, of course it is okay to cut in front of me. You must be in a hurry. I know in my heart that you would let me pass if I were in a hurry."

4) A long blast of a car horn means "Oh, you are stopping to let out your passenger. That makes perfect sense."

5) PorteƱa must be the Argentine word for German woman. My goodness there are a lot of Germans here.

6) Practica X is the real deal.

1 comment:

Daisy said...

Hi Bill!!
thank you for sharing your thoughts about Buenos Ayres with us!
These are specially funny :) just because we realize the huge differences between a city like Seattle and a 'latino' city. Aren't you guys more polite here? :)
Portugal is similar, Italy is even worse and now you can understand me when I got in (Seattle) for the 1st time and said: "Oh My God! they don't play the horns here! oohh... this amazing silence on the roads!" hehehehehe

German people there? I was far away from imagine that! Why? what is the attraction, any special motive?
We in Portugal don't translate the STOP sign :) although most of the drivers don't follow its rule either.