Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Planning vs. Living

Hola, Hola everyone! It's been sometime since I've posted anything. You might be thinking that Mendoza was so great that everything since has just been trying to fill the void for my last few months in Argentina... that's right I'm returning back to the states November 20th, however my mind and full concentration will be here enjoying every last moment I spend in this beautiful continent.
Truth is, I've been rather occupied in a time that I thought I would be very open to get a lot of writing done on this blog. The last two weeks, I forgot I even had a blog... can't you sense the passion for writing? I've been enjoying the weekly futbol games and continuing teaching several English classes a week. Among this well-established routine, I've also been playing the role of travel agent for my mom, brother and myself for the whole month of October and into November. More on this later. I've also been doing free lance work for a company down here called WebAr, translating web content from Spanish to English. A big thank you goes out to my Spanish Profesora Julieta for helping me find this work. It has allowed me to afford my final week in Buenos Aires before I set off to Lima, Peru to begin the 6-week continent tour.
Throw this all in with the fact that my good friend, BJ (college roommate) just moved down here for 3 months to get a taste of what Mike and I have been living. Our other college friends, Taelor and Alyssum just arrived 5 days ago as well. So, much of our time has been spent reminiscing, catching up on our current lives, and of course enjoying the moment, here and now.

For some reason, I've found this time to be very challenging to enjoy every moment, which I had become accustomed to. It's an interesting dynamic; mixing good friends from the states with good friends we've made here all the while trying to plan for a 1 1/2 month journey with my brother and mom. What has been most challenging you may ask? Finding my balance of planning and enjoying the moment with all of the friends here. Many also ask how I feel about moving back to the States in just two months. I've been doing some work to try to set up interviews upon my arrival (planning) but other than that I am doing my best to concentrate my energy here fully until I board that plane back to the northern hemisphere. When all is said and done in this posting, a very mind-ridding post needless to say, I am enjoying the dynamic of being around friends from past and present. We've been spending much of our time with our good friend Barry from Cuba. He is a very spiritual type and always reminds me to enjoy being in that moment with his contagious laugh. I've never seen anyone so happy constantly and I have to thank him very much for making me realize how fortunate I am to have all of the people in my life.

With my birthday approaching, I will use it to fully appreciate having all of my good friends here with me and commencing on a great journey with the family to see one of the most beautiful continents in each other's presence. Speaking of our journey, I do plan to keep this blog posted with updated pics and travel stories to spice things up a little bit, hopefully I can provide you with a medium to experience it vicariously. Our rough itinerary is as follows:

Lima, Cusco Peru (10 days)
Buenos Aires (2 days)
Bariloche (2 days)
Puerto Madryn; penguins, whales (2 days)
El Calafate (1 day)
Torres del Paine, W Circuit (4 day trek; National Geographic's top 50 things to do in your life)
Buenos Aires (4 days)
Iguazu Falls (2 days)
-my brother will unfortunately be cutting out on this part to fly back as my mom and I will continue on to Brazil
Rio de Janeiro (4 days)
Florianopolis (5 days)
-back to Buenos Aires until I fly back stateside.

As you can see, Buenos Aires is a very popular hub to travel this continent. This city, my home for the last 10 months, is full of international travelers from all walks of life which is why I feel I've experienced a little bit of each culture in one city, oh how I'll miss this city! Look for more to come as far as travels and the other great cultural aspects in Buenos Aires that I've been so fortunate enough to experience. Stay tuned for more!

P.S. I do want to mention a great source for many of your travel questions when traveling Argentina or any other country in the six main continents. The best way to have your questions answered is by those who have been there and done that. My planning has been immensely helped by the message board on www.lonelyplanet.com/thorntree. Big thanks to them for reducing some of the time spent 'planning' instead of living!