Vivi: My Beautiful Air
Please tell us a little bit about yourself. Who you are, where you come from, when you moved to Argentina, etc.
I’m Vivi. I’m a writer, hailing originally from Boise, Idaho. I have an insatiable curiosity for other cultures. After studying abroad twice in Europe and graduating into a jobless economy in 2009, I hopped a plane for Buenos Aires and I’ve been here ever since.
When and why did you decide to start blogging about your experiences?
My.Beautiful.Air was launched in March of 2010 as an attempt to efficiently explain my seemingly crazy idea to move my life abroad, and to keep in touch with my roots back home. I started writing about life as an English teacher, but as my own career has evolved, I now write recipes, restaurant reviews and short stories and general articles about expat life and the community here. I especially enjoy writing about other expat businesses.
Do you have any favorite blog entries of yours?
My favorite post is one that I wrote on my two year anniversary in Buenos Aires to remember the challenges and wonderful experiences I’d had.
Tell us about the ways your new life in Argentina differs from that back home. Did you have trouble getting used to the new circumstances? Did you experience culture shock?
I had major culture shock! I especially had a hard time adjusting to the food here. It was hard to learn a new system, language and culture. Buenos Aires still shocks me, almost three years later. That’s how we keep the passion alive. ;)
Do you think you were fully prepared for what awaited you in Argentina? If you could, would you change some decisions/preparations you made?
I was absolutely not prepared and I had no idea what to expect. I’m not sure any amount of research or preparation could have prepared me for what was waiting for me here. I did it anyway and learned and grew through many challenging experiences. I wouldn’t change anything about my decision, however I try to provide realistic information and expectations to others who are contemplating a similar move.
Which three tips would you like to give future expats before they embark on their new life in Argentina?
- Bring cash.
- Come with an open mind.
- It won’t be easy. It could be an adventure of a lifetime.
How is the expat community in Argentina? Did you have a hard time finding like-minded people or fellow expats?
The expat community in Buenos Aires is incredible. It is a strong community of creative, entrepreneurial free thinkers who are working on amazing projects. They are not hard to meet, however many long term expats are very wary of befriending newcomers, because so many leave, which is painful for us.
How would you summarize your expat life in Argentina in a single, catchy sentence?
Buenos Aires: not for the faint of the heart nor weak of stomach, endless opportunities abound.