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Buenos Aires on my Own

While living in Hong Kong from 2010-2012, I caught the travel bug visiting 11 different countries, most of which were in Southeast Asia, except for my trip to Buenos Aires, Argentina during summer break. I wrote about a few of my experiences in my then-blog, Ashley’s HK Experience. As a new travel piece to this blog, I’m reposting my piece on a trip to Buenos Aires where I went to visit my friend Steven in August 2011.

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Granted, I live in a country where English is not the (only) official language and I am sufficiently able to survive, but Buenos Aires is not quite the same as Hong Kong. With its signs in letters and characters, Hong Kong is easy on the eyes and brains of travelers and expats alike. Buenos Aires, on the other hand, has signs only in Spanish. Now if you donned a Spanish name, learned to count to 100 starting with uno and how to order a cheeseburger in high school Spanish class, you could easily survive the capital streets of Argentina. But for those of us who sported berets, listened to stories about Pierre et Fifi and watched movies with Gerard Depardieu, Buenos Aires can be a tricky location to find your way around. It’s not that I can’t match street signs to the Spanish words on a map, but asking for directions, ordering lunch or shopping for a pair of new boots can seem to be on the verge of impossible.

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