This? Right Now? My jam. Seriously. This describes everything I have ever felt about Legends of the Hidden Temple. Yes. I am 20 years old and the stupid idiots on that show still piss me off occasionally.
Anyway. Buenos Aires! I am still learning about and exploring the city. This morning we went to one of the universities at which I can take classes– Torcuato di Tella– and GOSH is it far from my apartment. It’s in Belgrano, which is a gorgeous area, but I don’t know that it’s really feasible to commute. I left 1.5 hours to get there this morning and only got there like maybe twenty minutes early. Part of it was because two buses passed me becasue they were full, but sheesh! I don’t know if the commute is worth it for only one class, which makes me pretty upset. They offer some great polisci classes (my major, for those of you who don’t know), so I’m still considering it. I think.
Tomorrow we visit the Universidad Catolica, or the Catholic University, which I’ve heard has a seriously religious slant in a significant portion of its classes but also offers the one class I MUST take, strangely enough. The only problem is that we have to stick around until our exams are over, and exams at UCA don’t officially end until 30 December. So assuming the worst, I will be here for Christmas, and I don’t know if I want to take that chance. So we’ll see what comes of that. We’re also visiting UBA (the Universidad de Buenos Aires), which, according to the program directors, is the biggest and one of the best universities in the country. Their classes are HUGE but they apparently have great seminar classes for fourth years, so I’m going to check out the offerings there, as well. Mostly I am trying to take most of my classes, if possible, at the Universidad de Salvador because our obligations there end on November 5, wheee!
I’m also learning a lot about the political scene outside of classes. Tonight at dinner we had a conversation about the current president, Cristina Kirschner. People are really open here about politics, which is refreshing but also a bit scary. My host family really doesn’t like her– they say she’s “mentirosa,” which roughly translates to a liar. Apparently she promised a bunch of stuff and hasn’t done any of it. My host family was also pretty upset because the only good laws she’s passed– like legalizing gay marriage (yeah, gay marriage is LEGAL here. In one of the most Catholic countries in the WORLD. What is wrong with you, America???) and the ability for gay couples to adopt children– have been incredibly recently, just as the time comes to garner favor with the electorate. As far as I can tell, though, no one likes Cristina Kirschner, but a lot of people still think she is going to win. Contradictory, no? But we shall see.
I am going to be here for the elections, which is going to be so interesting I can’t even stand it. This weekend is the first round of many votes coming up; it’s for what they call the “jefe gobernador,” something for which I haven’t quite figured out the English translation for. They have a mandatory vote here, which basically means that unless you are bedridden or dead you have to vote. If you’re out of the country, you have to present yourself to the Argentine Embassy in that country to prove you’re there. Weird, huh? Apparently they’re planning to go out to even the most remote locations and either bus people somewhere to vote or take their votes right there in the pueblos. And, strangest of all, Argentina is still using a paper ballot. Seriously! Everyone votes on paper and they have four people from four different political parties count all of them. EVERY. SINGLE. ONE. Ridiculous, eh? Could you imagine what life would be like if we still used paper ballots?? It’s like the Stone Age!! But oh, well. What they lack in technologically advanced voting schemes they make up for with socially progressive laws, I guess.
In other news, I took a bunch of pictures last weekend so they might make it up eventually… we did some sightseeing and some goofing around. On the plate for this weekend: learning to tango and eating Peruvian food. Tomorrow a bunch of us are going to see the Mothers de la Plaza de Mayo march, which should be incredible. Stay tuned!