Living abroad, away from your comfort zone and family and friends, isn’t easy. It’s especially difficult when you move to a place where you stand out. As a black woman living in Buenos Aires, you don’t have the luxury of fitting in and it’s almost impossible to be anonymous. Just walking down the street can feel like a spectacle. Because of this, it can feel like your experience living in Buenos Aires is a completely different experience from your counterparts of other races. Being black in Buenos Aires will make your experience more unique, but it can feel exhausting at times. A new reader, who is living in Buenos Aires, inspired me to write this post.
1. Take a Break From the City
Even though you’re visiting a new city that’s far away from home, you can still get tired of the daily hustle and bustle of it. When you feel this way in Buenos Aires I suggest getting away for a weekend or taking a day trip out. Some good places to go by bus are:
1. Iguazu Falls
2. Mar del Plata
A good day trip to take is a one hour ferry ride to Colonia, Uruguay. I loved everything there, down to the cobble stone streets. The place was beautifully ancient and more relaxing than Buenos Aires. You can sit on the rocks over the water and let the wind tell you stories. The men are hot too and less aggressive than Argentine men, in my opinion. Also, no one stared at me there. I think this is because there are more black people in Uruguay than in Buenos Aires.
2. Go Shopping
This doesn’t need much of an explanation. Retail therapy is the best pick me up! My favorite part of Buenos Aires to shop is Once pronounced (on-say). It’s full of affordable retail stores with nice clothes, shoes and accessories. Once reminds me of The Buenos Aires version of New York’s 34th street.
Another place I like to shop is at the Ferias (flea markets) in Buenos Aires. They have good ones in Recoleta, but the best one’s are in San Telmo, which is the artsy neighbor of Buenos Aires. You can find one of a kind art, jewelry and vintage furniture. It’s shopping paradise!!!!!
But my favorite place of all to shop in Buenos Aires is at the thrift shops, called Feria Americana in Argentina. Most of the stuff is still new with tags, unique and super affordable!
3. Take a Break From the Boliches (Clubs)
It’s tempting to party all the time in Buenos Aires, especially when you first arrive. But the boliche scene is where you can meet some of the most unsavory characters. I’ve experienced a lot of craziness in the boliches and heard from black women who said they had been grabbed and kissed against their will. So if you’re feeling fed up with the aggressive male behavior in Buenos Aires, I suggest taking a break from the boliches.
Note: I would like to take this moment to say that not all Argentine men are aggressive. There are a lot of them who are sweet and romantic. But just like any city you won’t always find the sweet men in the club. 😀
4. Meet Some Awesome Argentines
Making local friends in Buenos Aires is a plus and I highly recommend it. I have some of the most amazing Argentine friends and that helped make my stay feel more like home. It’s also great to have local friends because they can show you the hidden gems of the city. I found out about Once through an Argentine friend. One way to meet locals is by taking part in programs like SpanglishExchange. https:// www.spanglishexchange.com, a program that pairs English speakers with Argentine locals— meet and greet style. This company was actually started by a black woman living in Buenos Aires.
Sometimes the best way to deal with your emotions is to write about them. Writing about my experiences in Buenos Aires made them more meaningful and empowering. It would have been harder to get through my rough patches in Buenos Aires if I didn’t write about them.
I hope these tips help. Remember, you are not alone.
NOTE: Photo found via. I do not own any rights.
EXTRA NOTE: For some reason WordPress is being annoying today and none of my links are working. Sorry! :0(