In our homeschool activities, we try to make sure all of the kids are doing different types of writing including fiction, non-fiction, ‘persuasive,’ opinion writing, etc. With Colin, Jim and I take turns taking dictation. In addition to checking off some of the boxes on the homeschool checklist, we get to enjoy their perceptions and perspectives on our trip experiences. Here are some of our recent favorites.
From Sean: “The Argentine Experience” [a dinner-theater type of activity that we attended last week]
“First we made carne empanadas. Then we did creative empanadas. Next we had the “snack” which was pork sasauge, sweet sasauge, bread with melted cheese and red sauce. When the steak came we ate it. The next thing was they taught us 5 hand symbols and Argentine expressions like “que te pasa” (what’s up with you, what’s your problem), “ojo” (I’m watching you), “la posta” (perfect, just right), “que se yo” (not my problem, what have I got to do with it?) and “no seas codito” (literally means “don’t act like an elbow” but means don’t be cheap…don’t have short arms that prevent you from reaching for your wallet) [italic translations added by Carly].
We also made pre-dessert which was fruit and cheese and was good. Then we made real dessert, which was so good. It was mate’ and homemade alfohores and we ate it all up. The next thing we did was went crazy and won a jar of dulce de leche. We acted crazy all the way home.
All of the kids have been using their new Argentine expressions liberally, including a few times to other kids at the park who weren’t playing nice. Kind of funny, but we’re keeping an eye on it (“ojo”) just in case…
From Cecelia: “My Sunday in Buenos Aires”
“Yesterday was Sunday and the first thing I did was get up and breakfast. For breakfast I had two croissants, a yogurt, and a piece of fruit. Then I went out on our upstairs balcony and did a fifteen minute intense Nike workout with my mom. We also did a moderate one which was a whole lot easier. Then we got ready to leave.
When we finally got outside we walked down the street one way to go to a bank when we got there and tried it, it did not work. Then we went up the street a different way to try and catch a cab and we tried about 4 times before we succeeded and then when we finally got in one we stopped at about four banks on the way and they all did not work.
When we finally got there (the ‘cowboy fair’) we had to walk a couple of blocks and we saw an ice cream place. When we got to the actual fair part we walked around and looked at all the souvenirs and things people made for other people to buy.
Then my Dad ran to a bank to try and get some money and it worked!!
When he got back we went to get something cold to eat: a popsicle, I got strawberry and it was delicious. Then we went to watch the stage for a bit and the person playing was pretty good. Next we (we meaning the kids) tried to convince our parents to let us go on this awesome bouncy house but they said no. So we kept walking and we saw a booth selling jerseys so we got Sean Di Maria from Paris Saint Germain, I got Messi from Barcelona, and Colin got the same as me. (From Carly: Colin might dispute this wording since he actually picked first, but perceptions…)
After we got the jerseys we had to decide whether to take the bus back or take a cab back. We chose the bus. (It was a big mistake). So my Dad went to get the bus pass from one of the nearby convenience stores. We went to the first one but they did not have them. He went to the second one, but they only had the thing to charge them, so he had to run around the corner to the one that had the actual pass to get the pass and then run back to the other one to get it charged. I know right, alot of running. When he finally got back we went to catch the bus which when we first got there was only one seat but eventually we all got seats. The bus ride was really boring and long so when we finally got off I was super relieved that I didn’t die of boredom.
After we got off we walked home and had a delicious dinner: spaghetti and cabbage salad. When we finished dinner we went to the park to play soccer but I fell and hurt both of my wrists and the have been hurting ever since.
The End :)”
As Cecelia highlights, we’ve learned that many ATMs in Buenos Aires do not function on weekends- they either won’t process any transactions or just do not have money for withdrawals. It took us two weekends to realize this pattern, and now we know that locals (called ‘portenos’) get their cash out on Thursday or Friday for the weekend.
As far as cabs are concerned, it is actually illegal for cabs to pick up more than 4 passengers, which does present a challenge when you’re a family of 5. We’ve learned that some drivers care about this rule and some do not, and if we’re trying to hail a cab anywhere in the vicinity of a police station, our odds of getting one decrease substantially.
An excerpt from Sean about that same Sunday:
“We woke up and watched cartoons. Then we went to a bank and it was closed. Next we got a taxi and when we got there we paid him. Then we went to the fair. My Mom and Dad got a beer and we didn’t have enough money to get back.”
For the record, and in our defense, we always had enough money for the (boring) bus and it was also extremely hot (90F) so beer was somewhat imperative…
From Colin: “Animals that eat animals” (not for the faint of heart)
A jaguar ate a skunk, but the skunk tried to spray him with his stinky spray. And then a fight happened between a hippopotamus and a rhinoceros, the hippo got the rhinoceros bloody and he almost ate him. And then a cheetah smelled something that tasted good. It was a mouse. And then he walked the way that he thought it was and then he tried to eat it and then it was there. Then the cheetah went “raaarhhh!” and the mouse went “squeak, squeak, squeak!” Then the mousey just crawled away to go back to his home and the cheetah walked away to his home too. And then on the way he smelled another thing, but it was a skunk and he didn’t want to get sprayed again so he just walked away.
More to come about our adventures in Buenos Aires! We’re having fun, enjoying Spring, and learning more and more Spanish every day.