OK so I’ve come back to the USA after one whole year for a 15 day visit. I should apologize now to those of you whom I did not see. My schedule--three days in FL, 5 days in STL, 36 hours in DC, two days in PA and a final 2 days in STL--was incredibly tight and I have been running around non-stop visiting family all over the country. I definitely did not get a chance to see everyone with whom I would have liked to visit. I hope to come back soon and see everyone who I missed this round.
Today is early Monday morning (2:25 am), and I can’t sleep. I got in from PA this afternoon, and I leave to go back to Argentina on Tuesday. Not even Grandma Ellie’s relaxation exercise in which I talk my body into complete relaxation (from relax toes, relax, to relax private parts, relax, to relax teeth, relax and so on) can help me shut my eyes and keep them that way. So I’m trying to do something productive and blog.
My first couple days back in the States were a trip. Not only did I get to spend three days with my awesome grandma on the FL beach, but I hadn’t been home in a whole year. I’m pretty used to the transition between Argentina and the US by this point, so culture shock was minimal. However there were a few Yankee-isms that got me:
- On the first day back, we went to go a see El Secreto de sus Ojos (The Secret in their Eyes), the Argentine film that won Best Foreign Film at the Oscars. I ordered a medium diet coke and was shocked when they handed a 1.5 L cup. It was $5. The next day we went to see Oceans and I ordered another diet coke. I thought it best to order a small this time around seeing as how the medium could fill my bladder three times over. The small, at $4.50, looked like a kiddie cup. And thus I was reminded of the quintessential dilemma for the US consumer: feel like a pig and go for the value buy or buy just what you need and feel royally screwed over.
- Whole Foods really freaks me out. Some of you who know me well might remember that grocery shopping is one of my favorite activities. I love roaming each and every isle (sometimes twice) thinking of all the dinner parties I could host if I bought everything on every shelf. But entering into Whole Foods was sensory overload after a year of shopping in 3-isle markets (called chinos, or Chinese, owing to the fact that Chinese immigrants have deftly taken over the majority of the small grocers market). I saw fresh exotic produce flown in from all over the world (wonder what the carbon footprint of those Chilean grapes are). I grew indignant when I saw varieties of apples grown in Argentina that I can’t even find in Argentina! I saw a cheese wheel that had to have weighed at least 25 lbs (my mouth watered uncontrollably). I longed to buy every pre-prepared frozen vegetarian meal, especially the $3.99 indian cuisines. I figured i could fit at least a dozen into my suitcases as long as I packed them with dry ice and prayed that customs didn’t stop me. There were free samples!!! And the check out lines, despite swarms of organic consumers, didn’t delay more than five minutes! It was all just TOO MUCH!
Ok I’m gonna try and have one more go at that guided relaxation exercise.
lots of amor and besos from...well...from la patria known as yankeelandia!