Everything is miraculous. It is a miracle that one does not melt in one’s bath.
The hunt for new food, people, and art has prompted a few moves on my part; the latest brought me to Buenos Aires. I’m known for having adventures and for having more teeth than most people. Or at least the inherent ability to show off more teeth than my peers – the same might be said of my adventures.
I grew up in Hollywood, riding my bicycle amongst the ruins of discarded sound stages and hypedermic needles (LA in the ‘80’s), participating in petty crime, falling in love with music and language, and side stepping gang violence. My public high school included the children of moguls who drove Lexus SUV’s alongside kids who’d never met their parents. The thing we all had in common was the lack of any rules and an interest in shoplifting. As a teen, I went to great parties at mansions that often ended in gunfire. The school campus had race wars, movie stars, Russian mafia, drive by shootings, undercover FBI searching for identity thieves running credit card scams, a suicide hanging in the boys bathroom, basketball and graffiti art celebrities, handguns in backpacks going off accidentally in class, and cliques of war refugees. Teachers married students, principles popped pills, and kids were dangerous.
I left the chaos of Hollywood for UC Santa Barbara where I studied international relations amongst surfers. I worked full-time and saved to travel. On a trip to New Orleans for Mardi Gras, I met interesting characters on Bourbon Street and had an intoxicated/ing conversation with an Indian from London who described Carnaval in Rio as putting N’awlins to shame. The next year saw me studying in Florence, Italy at the University of Gonzaga three days out of the week, while I hopped around the pre-euro continent the rest of the time on a loan and financial aid. It was an amazing time of touring, hedonism, Italy and learning – about art, architecture, history, language and politics, first-hand.
I finished school and returned to Europe. I lived in Lyon and Paris, France where I played music in a rock band and sang with an Algerian hip hop group. I struggled to work on a temporary visa and I became a regular at the Louvre and Musee d’Orsay and at live music venues in Paris. I learned to speak French well and gained twenty pounds on a cheese habit.
Post-grad, I returned to Hollywood where I worked in the music industry and in publishing, while I waitressed. Later, I worked in adult education and for middle school while I played music and wrote nightlife articles. I took regular trips to Barcelona and Ibiza, Mexico, New York, New Orleans, and Las Vegas. I learned Spanish and I owned a 1983 El Camino.
On a trip to NYC to play the CMJ Music Marathon with my deejay-based girl-group, I decided it was time for a move. New York is a city that functions exceptionally well. A lowrider bicycle, circa 1973, and a metro card, replaced my Chevy El Camino. I worked in Brooklyn, on Wall Street, and in Midtown Manhattan and taught night school in Chinatown. I wrote about art, music, and cocktails, ate well, rode the trains, ran in Central Park, and vacationed in the Caribbean. Everything I loved about traveling, I found in NYC. I usually struggled to make ends meet and I loved every minute of life in New York.
I went to Buenos Aires, thinking I’d stay for a few months and then travel around South America. In BsAs I met wonderful people, including a boyfriend, and I never made it out of the city. Back in New York, I realized it was time for a new adventure. NYC wasn’t the greatest place in the world anymore – now it was full of people with marginal health care who didn’t have time to smile and be warm to each other like in Buenos Aires. I was tired of living in a basement and I was ready to live with someone and to live in Spanish. I packed up my world and came to South America to get to know a brand new continent.
Here in BsAs, I’m discovering the underbelly of Buenos Aires. I spend time wandering around San Telmo and finding new shops and cafes. I love running in the Reserva Ecologica. I enjoy weekend trips out to the countryside and discovering new local bands and nightlife spots. Writing about it for ATG, I hope I can add something to your adventures here as well.
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