Pre-departure paranoia. Excited for what is to come, but anxious to know what that will really look like. It seems there is so much to do in preparation for such a long time gone.. Am I forgetting anything? I cannot wait for the adventure that lies ahead, but I know that I must be thoughtful in packing lightly and doing everything I can ahead of time to have the best transition.


As I approach closer to departure day a wide range of emotions flood over me. I am excited, nervous, anxious, curious, and somewhat in awe.


My good friend and mother saying goodbye at the airport in SFO!

I turned twenty today! I decided to make what was meant to be two posts into one, because the first one “Pre-departure paranoia” was too short. It has been a very long last seventy-six hours. After a heart felt goodbye to my grandparents, mother, and boyfriend, I left SFO airport on Thursday at noon and landed in Newark 8:30. With less than an hour layover and a previously delayed flight, I was rushing to make it to my next gate. Of course, the gate on my boardingpass was not the gate I was actually departing from (it had been changed suddenly). Once I realized that I was standing at the gate for b-b-Barcelona, rather than b-b-Buenos Aires, I knew I was in big trouble. Sure enough- I had missed my flight, the only flight that goes to Buenos Aires once a day. Fortunately, one of my closest friends at UCLA is from New York and I was able to meet him in New Jersey to stay the night and morning with him at his beautiful vacation home. His family treated me like I was one of them and words cannot express how grateful I am to have had them at such a great time of need.

Every Lyft driver I met on the East Coast was super nice and one even gave me a few gifs for the road!

My flight was long, but I was able to meet two new friends, a couple native to Buenos Aires who agreed to show me around the city sometime. Despite all of the hardships, I have been coming away with so much patience and wisdom as a result. It also has made me realize how little you need as long as you have yourself and good people in your circle.

I wish I could say that I was feeling great right now and that everything is going so smoothly, but that is not the case. I am still waiting for my luggage which was left in Newark, my WiFi will not turn on AT ALL, my computer won’t charge, and literally- all of the basic, privileged, materialistic factors that make life comfortable and at ease are seeming to give me the hardest of times. Is that my lesson for the week? Let go of the material, take care of the physical and spiritual.. I do not need any material to define my experience. Stay calm, patient, openminded, optimistic, and thankful. I look forward. to writing in a few days when everything is more settled. For now, here are pictures of friends, family, and blessings.

August 27, 2018

Update: My first week in Argentina is officially over. I finally received my luggage with everything in it and have been slowly but surely getting myself organized. It has been amazing so far. The city is flowing with life and is filled with memories of Argentina’s rich past.

The feminist movement is stronger than ever as people gather throughout the streets demanding the legalization of abortion, workers rights, and other basic needs! Today was my first day of class at the Universidad Torquato di Tella. I skip to this point to add some context to why I chose this program in particular and how relevant it has been already in regards to the work I do. We discussed the foundation of human rights and what the world would be like without rights. What are rights and how do they differ from liberties? I chose this program in particular to delve into human rights and the cultural memory aspect of development, economics, and social justice. One of the beautiful things that I have fallen in love with in Buenos Aires already is how strong the LGBTQ+ community is here. Despite it’s size, the community is strong and there are plenty of opportunities to get involved and find safe, queer spaces throughout the city.

There is a constant drive for change and demanding people’s rights. Although, many of the buildings consist of old, abandoned European architecture.. the people within Argentina refuse to be forgotten.

August 28, 2018

Two of my favorite adventures I have gone on with the program are to Estancia and San Telmo. San Telmo is where a ten block market filled with Argentinian tradition and tourist traps is located. San Telmo is considered to be the oldest barrio in Buenos Aires. In 1871, affluent thriving San Telmo was struck by Yellow Fever. Thousands of people died and those who were still alive believed that the disease was on everything that they touched, so the upperclass left to the North, leaving everything behind. People from all over moved into San Telmo over the next few decades, finding houses filled with jewelry, antiques, and chandeliers. Instead of keeping everything, they threw it out onto the streets to sell. Today, those same streets are filled with items and antiques of the like. As I was walking down the street, I was able to imagine and feel the people who once lived here, moving everything out onto the streets where some wealthy buyer would come and pick it up. You could feel the dynamics of social class and race between interactions both personal and interpersonal. Although, I had to leave early to pick up my luggage, the little time spent there was one for the books.

A few days later we took a trip to Estancia. At Estancia, I had the opportunity to ride bikes along the country side, practice archery for the first time, drink lots of mate, milk a cow, and ride a horse in the sunset. WOW, what a mouth full and what a full day! It was such an amazing experience and was probably the first day I spent not having to worry about anything, but having a good time. The food was amazing and all of the animals had so much room to roam. I have been making some great friends so far both from Argentina and the United States and am excited to continue sharing all the memories made! Hope you enjoy.