Suitcase on wheels     stuck in the snow   sniffer dog

Sunday, January 16, 2005

5. Flatting (B.A, Argentina)

Yesterday I started looking for a flat or a room in a flat. Although the flatting culture isn't that engrained here in South America. I think people tend to live with their parents until they get married, as in other Latin countries. But there are some flats around, as I saw a few notices on the noticeboard at my university. And not surprisingly we have to pay inflated gringo rates, but it's still cheaper than hostels. Hell, even crap hotels here are cheaper than a dorm bed. A cheap single room in Hotel Bolivar costs $15 pesos per night, whereas a dorm bed in my hostel is $20 pesos. The hostel will offer a discount for staying a month - $450 pesos. Which is the same as 30 nights in the crap hotel.
The main reason I wanna get a flat is to get away from English speakers. At the moment I do my 3 hours of Spanish lessons a day, and then get back to the hostel and I'm speaking English with all the Norwegians and Israelis and North Americans here. I want to meet some locals, as well as speak Spanish more.

Random pic: foot traffic past my restaurant during lunch on Ave. Florida
Anyway, the first place I visited was Juan Carlos' in San Telmo, which I found on the net here ages ago. The guy was nice enough and he had 3 rooms for rent but no one else in any of them so I would have had the place to myself, a bit lonely. And he usually only gets foreigners in which would mean more English speaking.
So then I called some of the numbers from the noticeboard. The first one I visited was coincidentally right next door to Juan Carlos' house in San Telmo. The 'interview' was a bit of a mission though, man my Spanish is bad. The language is so much more difficult than I expected, I can sometimes say the question I want but understanding the answer is the next challenge. As for conversations... yeah right. I lose track after half a sentence. Anyway, I think I'll take that room - it's only available for a month so that'll give me time to find something better if I need to stay longer.


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