In order to switch things up a bit, we opted to follow Pamela on a leather factory excursion rather than heading home after class. The trip wasn’t exactly what we expected, but it was interesting nonetheless. Most of the people who went were expecting a tour of a huge factory full of animal skins, but it was basically just a store full of leather goods with a small factory area in the back that we didn’t get to see.
Once we successfully got everyone on & off a city bus to Boedo (Does the barrio name ring a bell?), we walked a few blocks until Pamela announced that we had arrived. By that I mean that we were on a street corner in front of a big metal door with only a doorbell. It seemed a little sketchy, but once we were rung in, we could see that it was one of those places that people go to if they know exactly what they need. The employees were extremely helpful, & everyone seemed to enjoy rifling through jackets, purses, & belts made of authentic Argentine leather. The only shock came when we realized that all of the prices were in U.S. dollars. A lot of nice jackets got put back on the hangers after that. Even so, I’d say we did our part supporting the Argentine leather industry today.
Because it was a leather goods store, of course there was horse tack. I felt right at home!
Got some Spanish practice in today, too! I was hunting for some souvenirs, so a few sales people helped me out & were excited to hear me struggle through a Spanish conversation & get a break from busting out their English skills. There was also a lady shopping for some luggage at the same time we were there who sounded like she might be from Russia (I could be totally off with that guess) but was speaking English, so I did my best to translate her need for a pull-out handle on her bag to the older salesman. Can’t say that I saved the day or anything, but it’s fun being able to help people understand each other.
Tomorrow we have the international students’ orientation at UB. Hopefully that means we’ll get to meet some students from other countries! Keeping our fingers crossed.