1. You often get your change in sweets
There seems be a real shortage of change in Argentina, and smaller notes and coins are especially hard to come by. Some shops seem to have done away with the coins completely and instead give you your peso change (about 10p) in the form of a few sweets. We approve immensely and think Britain should do away with our 1p and 2p’s in favour of this method.
2. Their doctors all seem to be under the age of 10
The common school uniform is what we can only describe as a tiny white old fashioned doctors jacket. Give them a stethoscope and they’re ready to diagnose.
3. There are lots of dogs
Well looked after but free to roam and they love a backpacker as a companion for the day. You do not have a say in the matter. If you’re lucky it will just be the one walking you, if your not, you may find yourself part of a pack.
4. There are more pharmacies than can possibly be warranted
Even in towns without cash points or phone signal, there will be several of them!
5. Drinking Mate is a way of life
So much so, many Argentinians carry flasks of hot water everywhere with them, in purpose built satchels. The satchels are gorgeous – we think two bottles of wine would fit in rather nicely…plus we’d look like locals…
6. Argentinians like queuing more than the Brits do
Orderly queues are formed in most situations including when waiting for buses. Be careful not to skip in front…you will be taken up on it…unless you’re an old lady then you seem to be exempt…
7. Chivalry is taken very seriously
Seats are always given up to your elders or to women. The British commuters could do with taking a leaf out of their book!
8. There is no such thing as a standard opening time
Shops seem to open when they feel like it, usually about an hour after the sign on the door says so. Loosely speaking, it seems common for some shops to stay open until about 1pm then close until about 4 or 5 or sometimes 6pm, when they open again for the evening. This isn’t always the case though. Don’t be surprised if you fancy a late lunch and find everywhere closed.
9. Don’t expect to dash into a supermarket
The queues are crazy! It seems you can pay various bills, gas and electricity etc, whilst picking up a few groceries so expect to wait in line for a while. If you can keep you items to less than 10 and join the fast track till…though its not always faster…
10. Wine is very cheap
May not be a surprise to most but we have become accustomed to paying no more than £3 for a very decent bottle…at £4 we’d be really splashing out. We may have some adjusting to do when we return to the UK.