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Things Not To Do When You Come To Buenos Aires

Not to be taken as a list of pluses or minuses for the city, this is just a list of things that are part of the unspoken rules of this place that will make it a better trip for all involved if they were followed. Some I wish were true everywhere, others I have found as annoyance, especially the walking speed. But that’s another post.

1. Don’t get up early, especially on weekends. I’m an early riser now thanks to my job, but even in my old days of late to bed late to rise I’d be running too early for this city. Museums for the most part don’t open until 1400. Shops don’t open until noon on weekends and you’ll be the only one shopping before about 1500. Restaurants don’t start hopping with lunch patrons until at least 1400.

2. Don’t think you can get by with just your credit cards. A lot of places don’t take them.

3. Don’t walk too fast. Flying down the sidewalk is the norm in New York. Not so much here. Also, don’t expect people to move out of your way if you do.

4. Personal space is much closer than you’re used to. Don’t be offended.

5. Don’t feel bad if you’re dining alone. No one will treat you any different.

6. Don’t wear tourist clothes. The poor college student look doesn’t fly well either.

7. Don’t be a vegetarian, especially the type who spouts lectures about the mistreatment of living things ad nauseum. You’re a bore anyway. Shut up.

8. Don’t be bothered by the men. They’re only doing what’s socially acceptable. Do what the local girls do and just keep walking. Don’t be offended.

9. Don’t let graffiti bother you. Its presence does not necessarily mean it’s a bad neighborhood.

10. Never enter a shop or a business without greeting the staff… even if they’re talking amongst themselves or on the phone or anything.

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