A Travellerspoint blog

Just for Laughs

Hooray for Canada!

So these blog entries will be, like the title, Just For Laughs.....again, warning, this material may not be suitable for certain ages, and the content may be explict. Also, this is stuff that I find funny, which I have been told doesn´t fall into the category of ¨everyone¨ thinks this is funny. Read at your own risk........

Last Sunday, when I was walking back from Parque Independencia, I stopped off at a gas station to go number 1. I drink lots o water, so I´ve mapped out in my head safe havens, bushes, back alleys, and real bathrooms in my head. Survival skills suckas!! anyways, I walked into the bathroom and there was a little kid there asking for money. I didn´t say anything and proceeded to the urinal. Little Jimmy comes right up next to me, almost touching my hip, as I´m getting ready to take a slash. Talk about stage fright! He didn´t move, and let me tell you he got a free show...I was very vulnerable to say the least, perfect time to jack-a-gringo.....lucky for me jimmy must have been five or six, so I figured I could take him if things got ugly.

Sat night while walking around the city with Mike and Jeff, we get to Parque España....it´s the park by the river, tons of fools are always chilling there, day and night. As we were walking through, we pass a group of people sitting on a bench. What appear to be 2 street dogs start to get a little barky, so we mount up, grab some ammo, and walk past the dogs with our arms cocked, ready to fire. This is while the group of people are just staring at us as the dogs are barking. And you can tell when a dog is barking because he wants to say whattup or if he´s pissed.....this one was more pissed. Regardless, we make it through the gauntlet unharmed. We find a bench for ourselves and were kicking it, telling jokes, and having a grand ´ol time when the group of people walk by with the dogs. I can´t remember if one was on a leash, but I don´t think so. So it must have been their dogs! I´ve seen some street dogs that kick it around groups of people. It is really weird, I´ve never seen people love street dogs, and I´ve never seen so many well fed street dogs here in Rosario. People actually touch them. But anyways, it was nice to know that they didn´t control their angry aggressive dog when we were just walking by, doing nothing to them. So we kick it for a little longer at the bench and then decide to roll back into the Centro. We´re crossing the street from the park side, coming up on a restaurant on the corner and I see two dogs chilling outside. No big deal. Dogs love chilling outside restaurants, and I´m sure they´re so healthy because peeps give them food.....WRONG! It´s the same dogs, and barky gets all hot and bothered again! The dog approaches us, and Mike shrieks and jumps into the street and runs into some random dude. To make things even better, the same group of people were sitting outside of the restaurant, not once did they tell the dog to shut the fuzz up, or I´m sorry that my dog wants to eat you, he usually is really friendly. Who knows, maybe you had to be there, but I thought it was great that we walked past the same dogs/peeps twice. We could have gone any direction to get into the Centro......it was fate! It really brought back the nightmares of 1 800 Got Junk.

My apt......three´s company, right? To bad instead of 2 beautiful rosarina womens, I get Victor and César, two men who are roughly 55 and 60, and interesting cats to say the least. Well, this last week our threesome turned into a foursome. I don´t know if I´ve described my apt yet, but it is pretty basic. Three rooms, bathroom, kitchen, outdoor spot to wash clothes......i´ll take pics and eventually get post them. All in good time....but Victor showed me the closet too, where he stores his hunting things, random SHI, and dog food. It also has a bed, for his señora(wife). Apparently she comes around every once in a while. Sounds like a really happy marriage they´ve got going on. He didn´t make it sound like she was a regular though, so here I am parading around the house Tom Cruise risky business, glasses and all, and out pops Raquel from the kitchen. ¡Dios Mio! Maybe she does live here too, who knows? What I do know is that she has a dog, now I live with Sara and her sister. Sara is chill, sister isn´t. Dog barks at me as I go to the bathroom at night. I was making a salame sandwich, and sister was licking my hand, I let her do it because I was trying to let her get comfortable with me, gain some trust, you know, and as I go to pet her head she jumps up and bites my hand! Full Chomp! Raquel sees the whole interaction, and guess what she says.....¨Your hand must have something tasty on it¨ Amazing! No reprimand to the dog, I guess humans are to blame with any animal related incidents. Who knows. To sweeten the deal, Raquel and sister sleep in the closet next to my room, and I hear sisters gunts and scratches and who the heck knows what she´s doing over there. Victor came up to me the other night and asked me if it´s a problem having Raquel here. What am I supposed to say? Yes, get your Señora out of your house? I don´t think so. She´s aight I guess, now I know who´s been cleaning the bathroom. The spot is chill though, I do have a colony of birds that wake me up every morning, or better yet, that keep me up because I don´t get tired until 5 or 6, just when they get up and start causing hell. Then come the buses, and the car alarms, and the Jon Bon Jovi that bumps on every car stereo......but it could definitely be worse. At least sister doesn´t sleep in my room!

A couple of days ago I got home and started cooking dinner to find Victor and Raquel going out together. Maybe 5 mins later Cesar comes out of his cave to make dinner too. He asks where Victor and Raquel are, and when I say that they´re out, immediately a wiley grin jumps onto his face, his eyebrow turns to the ceiling, and he sprints out of the kitchen. Two seconds later I hear his stereo blasting, Fogerty of course, and he struts back into the kitchen, shirt off, tango two step spin move and all as he starts making his brazilian rice. I snuck some cookies and watched MTV latino and I didn´t even read at all that day. It´s so great when mom and dad leave the house to ourselves, no matter how brief the time may be. It kinda sucked though, cause César talked on the phone all night while eating popcorn and ice cream and he didn´t even share! I´m telling on his ass that´s fo sho.

Posted by escot 12:58 Archived in Argentina Tagged living_abroad Comments (2)

1st Weekend in Rosario

As you might have guessed, beerfest really took it out of me. So my second week in Rosario was devoted to decompressing, situating myself, and reevaluating my surroundings. This is vital to fully prepare oneself for finding a job. I made it a must to not overexert myself. You might say a vacation within a vacation....call it what you want. we can agree to disagree. Let´s just say I´ve gotten to know the city of Rosario and a great majority of English Institutes, Travel Agencies, and Hotels. Everyday I would walk around and turn in my CV to various places, banking on the fact that they might need someone who spoke English good. Well, we shall see. No promising leads, except for the call centers. They have call centers for HP, T-Mobile, Yahoo, and some others down here. So when you get pissed at your cell phone plan, the 800 number you call sends you to Rosario, Argentina. Everyone I´ve talked to has said that it is a sure thing, so it looks like I´ve got an ace up my sleeve.

Unfortunately the English Teacher bit that I was hoping for doesn´t look to promising. All classes end at the end of Nov or early Dec for summer vacation. Apparently the ¨summer¨ is Dec, Jan, Feb in South America. Go Figure. So there is no need for teachers until March, but if I have to leave in June it doesn´t make sense to start and then leave midway through a school year. Whatever. I have a coulpe more options, there might be summer classes I could teach, or maybe conversation classes......if not it has been one of my dreams to answer phones for 10 hrs a day and dealing with people who are genuinely pissed off.

The weekend festivities start on Thursdays, and the thing is that you can´t just jump into Thursday with cold feet, so usually that means warming the tank on a Tues or Wed, depending on your workload. Mine just happens to be exceptionally light, so I got started on Monday. NOT! I´m messing with you! I WANTED to keep the party going on Mon, but everyone was ¨tired¨and ¨had shit¨ to do. Thursday was mellow. I went out with Mike and a group of friends from the program to a bar close to my house. It had an open upstairs area, and a downstairs with two distinct rooms. One had a dance floor but no one was dancing, just standing around talking, and the other room was filled with couches and chairs for chillaxing.

The music was distinct, classic rock till you drop...Mike and I rocked out to Baba O´Riley. Bolicheros Unite! The other thing that really stood out were the cold cold womenz. You would have thought they were British! You´d walk up to a circle of ladies, and say hello, or something dashing like ¨That shirt really excentuates your body type nicely¨ and you were met with a snarl and a stare that came straight out the depths of Mordor. They were like those creepy dudes that ride dragons who are half dead half alive and always looking for the ring.... Seriously though, just saying hey was either completely ignored, or backed by a one word response. Then when you try to ask a couple of more questions, you keep getting frostbitten one liners or even better the ¨let´s see what Hirosan has in the box- Nothing, Absolutely Nothing!¨that´s when it becomes hilarious. To me at least. And yes, even going out to a chill bar, you don´t get home till 6am.

Friday night I found myself napping around 10pm, which would have turned into sleep, but my friend Jeff hit me up and told me about an asado going on down by the river. An asado is an argentine BBQ. I had already eaten, but I was down to kick it. Speaking of cooking, I´ve yet to give myself food poisoning, and I´ve really been outdoing myself. No more bread and ketchup for me. I make bomb stuff like eggs with bread and ketchup. Or salame with cheese and bread and ketchup. AHHHH NOT!!! I make pizzas, ravioli, milanesa de soya, milanesa de pollo, sandwiches, pasta with meat sauce and veggies, oatmeal, salads, fruits and vegetables.....the list goes on and on. But anyways, I went to the river spot, and it was a blast. Lots of gringos kicking it around some picnic tables. There were other groups of argentine´s hanging out too, and I got the chance to meet some locals. Still found certain circles of ladies to be standoffish, but there is only so much I can do!

Saturday was also chill. Mike and Jeff and I just walked around the city. More of this night will be described in a section I´m calling Just For Laughs. So you´ll have to wait a little longer.....Sunday I continued treking Rosario, trying to take photos for y´all. I walked to Parque Independencia, which was DAYS from my house. I saw Newell´s Old Boys stadium and a ton of people in the park. It was wild though, when I left my house around 4pm there was no one in the centro. Streets were dead. Ghostown shi.......turns out there was a Boca vs River Plate soccer game...Argentines love soccer. There weren´t any riots after this game, but hopefully there will be one soon. I´ve been told that you haven´t ¨seen¨Argentina until there is some type of soccer related chaos. Ok, ttfn, I´ll catch ya´ll on the flipside!!!

Posted by escot 09:08 Archived in Argentina Tagged foot Comments (1)

BEERFEST

Uh oh! I think somebody's trying to chug in my face!

Welcome back to scott talk. it´s a pleasure to have you. So where was I.....Beerfest......my first weekend in Argentina, and there just happened to be a beerfest. A match made in heaven. Mike and some buddies were going and they threw me an invite to tag along. That´s when I made my first mistake.....I assumed Mike had a clue as to what was going on. Fool me once, shame on me, fool me twice, shame on you, and fool me thrice, who knows. Mike tells me they are going to Cordoba for the weekend and then going to a town Villa General Belgrano for the fest on Sunday, the last day.....so i head to the bus station and buy a roundtrip tick to Cordoba and back to Rosario. Turns out Mike isn´t staying in Cordoba. He´s gonna be in Villa Carlos Paz.....roughly 35km from Cordoba or an hr bus ride more. This slight detail turned out to be a fickle beast. Nothing I couldn´t tame, and everything worked itself out as it always does, but I had to travel a little more, change my return ticket twice, and eventually ended up canceling it because I hopped on Mike´s bus for the ride back. Make sense? No? Let me get to the dirty dirty.....

After an all night bus ride and waiting in the hotel lobby for days, Mike and his clicka finally came back to the hotel.....They knew I was meeting them, and they ¨forgot¨their cell phones in the hotel.....thanks guys! I promptly took a nap with the rest of the crew, emerging from slumber in the late afternoon. Mind you this is the worst time of the day to try and do anything. Everything shuts down. We walked around the town, trying to grub, and found everything to be closed. Luckily there was a store open and we mobbed on salame, bread, cheese, and beer. We took our bounty back to the hotel and sat out by the pool, feasting and being merry. It really hit the spot.

Maybe around 10 or 11 we ventured back into town, hit up main street, and got some pizza and beer at a restaurant right smack in the centro. We were just biding our time, getting ready for the club. After dinner we walked to the club...a little hesitant about going in so early.....it was 2:30. Apparently you don´t go out until balls late in Argentina and spots don´t get crackin until 3:30-4. In the states people are asleep, things are SHUT DOWN and here people haven´t even gotten ready to go out. wild. I know, europe is supposidly like that too, but I´ve never experienced late nights like this. Back to the club, it was huge, just like she said, and just as we suspected, dead. It had multiple stories, two different dance areas, a patio-rooftop chill area, and couches scattered throughout. Now all we had to do was wait. Wait for the hordes of ladies to fall in love with our sexy American accents and our uncanny dance moves. Let´s just say when it rains, it pours. Side note- It was raining a shiza load and there was a spotlight that made the rain look sick from the patio-rooftop.

But you see the problem with the club was that it must have been an 18 and younger club. No joke. It was awful(for me). It was like a million high schoolers decided to all go out to the same spot, at the same time. Dios mio. My sole purpose was to find someone out of their teens, and the only ones who qualified were the americans that came with me. It got to the point where one of Mike´s friends was talking to a girl who was 13!!! THIRTEEN!!!!! One, what was she doing out at 4am, and two, why was I in the same place as her?!?!?!?! I couldn´t help from cracking up. Average ages, I shi you not, 13-17. I immediately ripped up all the numbers I got.......22 my ass! A NOT!!! I´m messing with you. It is also custom in Argentina to ask how old you are two seconds after meeting someone....so no way i´m getting bamboosled(sp?). Awkward to say the least.

I´m sure Mike got tired of me trying to bump and grind him all night long, not to mention that I killed his game. He and a buddy were dancing with a group of youngins, and as i enter the circle, red sea, all gone by the end of the song. I eventually forced Mike to leave with me.....I think we got back around 5am and the bus for beerfest was leaving at 11.....OUCH!

Tired as fuzz later that morning, we boarded the bus with nothing but thoughts of delicious artisan beer flowing through our sleep deprived heads. We drove through some beautiful countryside, and of course this was the weekend that it rains. go figure.....they´ve had a severe drought for months.....but who cares, we´re talking about BEERFEST people! anyhoo, we got into Villa General Belgrano around 2:30pm. It´s an interesting town. Story goes that it didn´t exist until after WWII, it was founded and primarily inhabited by German immigrants. The town looks like one straight out of the fatherland. Question- Didn´t a lot of Nazi´s flee Germany to South America? Yes. Didn´t they flee to places like Argentina and southern Brazil? Yes. Probably just a coincidence that we went to Octoberfest in German-town Argentina, right? You tell me.....

Trying to forget the sketch behind the fest, there was one undenyable thing. Beer gets you drunk. Fools were faded. Everyone was in a great mood, shocker, there was song and dance and plenty of beer for all. Too bad we only had three hrs to spend in the gated community of debouchery(sp?). Fooled me twice. You see Mike was part of a tour group where everything was planned to a T. I was just starting to get my groove on, and boom, it was time to go. I took a bus back to Cordoba to cancel my initial ticket I bought, and I spent 2 plus hrs trying not to throw up on the person sitting next to me.....curvy ass road + bus + beerfest = no muy bueno. While I was spinning circles and using every trick in the book to not say goodbye to the beer, I missed the party bus, kareoke, and Mike freestylin some USHER. Once I was back in Cordoba, I took another bus to Villa Carlos Paz.

By the time I got back to the hotel everyone was spent....it was 11pm and fools were asleep and some were out with honies eating dinner. Lucky for me the party bus turned into party hotel and people kept kicking it while the young guns slept. I met a group of peeps from Rosario who were btwn the ages of 25-30.....FINALLY!!! They turned out to be super chill and they took me out to a non teenage club. We left the hotel at 4am and got back after 7. That´s how the big boys roll....the party doesn´t get STARTED until 4 in the mornin. The group I kicked it with had two guys stay later at beerfest, which was allowed, you just had to find your own way back, aka go to cordoba and then to carlos paz. One of the dudes didn´t answer his phone, alex, and they were worried that he was face down in the mud somewhere. I wasn´t too worried and as 3am rolls around fool gets back to the hotel, completely tossed, with a huge smile on his face as he´s giving a bear hug to his 2 liter stein. He didn´t let go of the mug. And to sweeten the experience, he was enamored with Mike. Mike sat next to the group on the way up to beerfest and obviously made an impression because homeboy would just randomly yell MMMMIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIKKKKKKKEEEEE with a big ol smile, eyes half closed, with just a hint of drool posting up on his lower lip.....priceless. Not to mention the fact that Mickey didn´t understand a word he said.

All in all, a great time was had. Sleep and I are apparently not friends anymore, but whatever. It´s cool going to bed when the sun comes up.....and think what you like, but Argentine´s drinking styles are differen´t from Americans. Meaning there´s something I haven´t said...or something you´ll have to factor in...we weren´t that drunk! Did you hear that everybody? They said they're not that drunk! Cheeky bastards! Watch Beerfest and enjoy a cold one......on me!

I think I´ll have myself a beer......

Posted by escot 13:42 Archived in Argentina Tagged business_travel Comments (1)

Rosario, Argentina

where the beer flows like wine, and the women instinctively flock like the salmon of capistrano

ladies and gentlemen,

welcome to my blog! it was suggested by someone to start this, and i´ve got friends who are doing the same thing, so i decided to further my ¨world wide web¨understanding. i´ve been told a blog is like an email, except you can always look at what you´ve previously written......how magestic, no? we´ll see how it goes........and as always, your feedback is welcome and greatly appreciated!

DISCLAIMER- Adult Content- May not be suitable for children under the age of 17

So in what seems like months of being away from friends and family, it turns out that only a week or so has passed. crazy. with so much that has happened, where should i begin?? how bout the beginning. my flight pattern was this, SJC to Den, Den to DC, DC to Buenos Aires. I left cali early in the morning 10/04, still patroned from the night before, and halfway through the flight to DEN started to feel pretty shitty. not cool. on a side note, i sat next to Taylor Schoefield´s brother Connor, and Taylor was in the row behind me. small world.... anyways, once i made it to DEN i found an empty gate, curled up into a ball, and tried to fight off the fire hose demons. I had two close calls, where i tried to walk the bad feelings off, but instead found myself in a staring contest inside a bathroom stall. i was on bended knee, but didn´t break, and left both occations victorious. let´s just say it was a rough travel day. i hold my ¨friends¨and ¨bad judgement¨responsible. sleeping the night before would have been nice.

i pulled into rosario the next day, around 5pm. I went straight to mike´s house where i got out of my sweat soaked clothes, freshened up, and then went on a search for a hostel. We found one with ease, and then went back to mike´s house where we kicked it with his family. They are all really nice people, and they make mike feel right at home. and for those of you who are worried that mike has fallen off, do not worry, is still a little jokester, even through his broken spanish, and has probably already broken the hearts of a few rosarinas. i know he´s made me laugh to beat the bucket.

DAY ONE
I woke up in my hostel around 1pm. i slept aight, peeps coming in and out of the room at all hours is kind of shitty. not to mention the fact that you need to get dressed and go downstairs to use the little boys room. but i met one of the workers there, and she said that she was going to look into jobs and places to live for me. already getting the networking going, yes sir! once i gathered my wits, i hit the pavement, and bought a newspaper with the classifieds. my plan is this, find a job and find a place to live. One night in the hostel made me realize that i needed to get my own spot. i spent a couple hours calling about apts for rent, and rooms for rent. things weren´t looking good for our hero, i either left a message, didn´t get an answer, or was told that the room was rented. I had two positive calls. One was Victor who told me to call him back in a couple of days because the person was still in the room, and the other was with Roberto who had a pension available. After talking with Robbie, I went over to the spot to check it out. turns out a pension is pretty much the same thing as a hostel. there was one room with 3 bunk beds and lockers to put your stuff in, a kitchen, and a b room. puros dudes, and puro funk. It was a cheaper option than a hostel, but i was really hoping for my own space. I thanked the man, and met up with mike and some friends for beer and live music.

DAY TWO-END of WEEK
So the next day i joined mike´s group for a gaucho fiesta. we went out to a farm and had a traditional argentine bbq, and watched argentine dancers. it was a great time, and i got to meet some of mike´s teachers and peeps in his program. for anyone who doesn´t know, an argentine bbq means MEAT. they busted out tray upon tray of meat. luckily i missed the blood sausage, but it was there for the taking. you could say that being vegetarian is like walking on broken glass down here. which is fine by me, i like pigs feet. after lunch we rode ponys, danced, pinged some pong and lounged around. minus the fact that i had the urge to set fire to the b room by the end of the day, it was a great time nonetheless. The rest of the week has kind of blended itself together.....mike and i kicked it a lot, and I kept the apt search on full throttle.

Last thurs i met up with Victor and I got lucky. I now live with Victor and Cesar.... Victor is roughly 60, and has a dog, Sara. The first thing he said to me is ¨this isn´t going to work. you are too young. you are going to want to have friends over, girls over, and there are rules in this house.¨This was all on the street, as he opened the door for me. I asked him if I could at least come up and check the spot out. He begrudgingly(sp? is this a word?) agreed. As he showed me the place, he kept telling me over and over again that no one can come to visit, and that it would be impossible for me not to break the rules. He says, ¨you are young, you have many girlfriends. the women here are like exotic fruits, they keep getting better and sweeter with every generation, they are irresistable. but you won´t be able to have any come to this apt¨straight up no soup for you!

it was funny though because he kept talking up the spot, how it is right in the centro, how it has everything you could ask for, hot water, kitchen, place to wash clothes, it´s safe, etc etc etc, but always coming back to the notion of my age and how it would be impossible for me to follow the rules. after a 20 min convo, i managed to break his spirit, and convinced him that i can follow the rules. it will be like high school all over again. sneaking girls into my room and everything. well, maybe not completely like high school.... i won´t have to sneak out of the house, he told me that i can come and go as i please, i just need to have my social life outside of the house. NO FRIENDS!!!!!!!!!

It is a three bedroom apt, and my room has a balcony and a view of the street. My other roomy is Cesar, roughly 55ish. last friday he went to a John Fogerty party. he goes every week. he and his friends barbeque up some shiz and listen to john fogerty. the dude knows how to kick it. maybe i´ll get lucky and get the invite soon. All in all I feel safe, and am paying roughly 160 bones a month. It´s a great location, and about a ten min walk to mike´s house. Victor has already told me he´s taken on the responsibility of my father......and he´s already warned me not to get involved with the mexican drug cartel down here, because drugs are bad, and that the argentine police is looking for mexicans and foreigners who are responsible for the fabrication of crack in argentina. i guess i´m going to have to find employment elsewhere. all these talks have come within a 1 day period, because i moved in on friday afternoon, and left for a beer fest friday night. i can´t wait until he gives me the birds and the bees talk. i´ll keep you updated. all in all i´m pretty pleased that i´ve found a spot in less than a week.....now it´s time to get a job!! i wonder if omni life is hiring....

ok, that is enough scott talk for now, i´ll let you guys in on beer fest the next time. it was debauchery at its finest........

till next time,
saludos,

scott

Posted by escot 15:16 Archived in Argentina Tagged animal Comments (4)

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