Why Teaching English in Argentina is the Best Decision I Ever Made
Rebecca is an American EFL teacher, currently living and working in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Check out her experience so far!
Patches of ice and a snow specked runway set the scene for my once in a lifetime journey. Their images created a flashbulb memory as I gazed at them and pondered my decision to leave it all behind with a one-way ticket to Buenos Aires Argentina.
Needless to say, I was nervous, very nervous. I was wrought with the type of nervousness that flutters its way out of the pit of your stomach and into your bloodstream, conquering your senses like a drug. As I sat in that coffee shop in Terminal A of Denver International Airport, I wondered if perhaps I had made this biggest mistake of my life. However, nearly a year later I’m happier than I’ve ever been and here’s why:
1. In Argentina the world’s greatest wonders are at your front door.
From the immeasurable majesty that is Iguazú, to the mighty Río Paraná, to the prismatic hills of the Atacama Desert, to the breath taking beauty that is Patagonia, Argentina is the nature lover’s dream come true.
Not only are these geographic wonders in your metaphorical neighborhood but with more holidays than any other country on the planet you’ll have all the time you need to explore them. So, if you’re like me and need to flee from city life in Buenos Aires every now and then, your perfect escape is only a bus ride away.
2. Argentina rewards the palate.
World famous for its thick and gooey pizza and to die for ice cream living in Argentina is the perfect way to spoil your taste buds. In this country, food is sacred and a rightfully so. Panaderías (bakeries) at every corner emit the smells of Argentina’s finest dulce de leche filled pastries. Meat such as world renowned chorizo and beef are grilled to perfection at weekly asados making Argentina the meat lover’s paradise.
With a menu so full of rich delicacy it’s no wonder that even the most health conscious Argentinian knows that the occasional alfajor may not be the best choice for your waistline, but it sure does wonders for your soul.
3. In Argentina you’ll make lifelong friends.
If you were to ask any Argentinian off the street to describe their people it’s nearly guaranteed that they will use one word: caloroso (warm). Argentinians inherited more than just an affinity for red wine and pasta from their Italian ancestors but hospitality too. Here, strangers greet you with a kiss on the cheek and a sincere invite to their next asado or birthday party.
However, it’s not only their hospitality that makes them so famously warm blooded but the quality of friendships that they form as well. In Argentina friends aren’t just the people you grab a beer with after work, they are your family. While you’ll still be struck with the occasional homesickness, you’ll soon be armed with a group of friends to make you feel more at home than ever while abroad.
4. Art, Art, and more Art.
In Buenos Aires, even the walls are a laden with modern day masterpieces. This is a culture that does not only appreciate art but actively values it. From free access to art museums to live Tango in the streets if you aren’t an art aficionado before you arrive in Buenos Aires you will be.
This love of beauty doesn’t only make Buenos Aires a living art exhibit but it leaves its inhabitants incapable of becoming bored. In this enchanting and sleepless city there is literally always a unique and interesting experience waiting to be had no matter what time of day.
5. Living in Argentina changes you for the better.
In my experience living in a different culture opens your mind in ways that cannot be fathomed by those who have not. You quickly learn to appreciate and value culture, which makes you a more open and happy person. You learn how relative most things you take as truths actually are. You learn to value different viewpoints and friendships.
But what makes living in Argentina so special is that it teaches you to live life by the day and to appreciate those around you. It shows you that what’s most important in life isn’t the cars you drive or the money you make but the friends you have and the experiences you gain, and living in Argentina will make you rich in both. Thus, I’m thankful every day that I didn’t succumb to my initial anxiety and made the decision to teach English here in Argentina.