Monday, May 07, 2007

Argentine Transplant - by Shoshana Davis

“Miiiiiiahhh, where are we going again?” sighs Charlotte, a newly four, overly poised, yet quiet and thoughtful red headed child. “We’re going to Argentina,” answers her best friend, Mia with a subtle eye roll and toss of her bobbed blonde hair. She can’t understand why Charlotte does not remember. It’s the same place they go every time they go on a trip. The bottom two steps act as their airplane seats when they travel around the world.

Ameila known to most by her nickname, Mia, is a slightly older (almost five) four year-old, and is the type of little girl always found wearing a pink skirt. She prefers dark pink and everything must match. She thinks anything pink matches. Polk-a-dots, stripes and stars match. It just has to be pink and if possible bright. Currently, she’s outfitted in pink sweat pants, under a pink flowered dress, and topped with a hot pink and orange fleece poncho.

“Where is Argentina?” asks Charlotte still attempting to comprehend how they are going to get there via the staircase of her parents’ Victorian style, northern Virginia home. “It’s faaaar away,” says Mia as she packs up one of their two Fisher Price strollers with her favorite doll, Bitty Baby, and her stuffed brown dog, known simply as big dog.

“Is Argentina more far away than Africa?” Charlotte asks as she continues her inquisition. Charlotte’s class at the Waldorf School recently learned about Africa. She really enjoyed learning about the drums. Mia pauses as she buckles Bitty Baby into place to collect her thoughts. “Well, Argentina is at the very top of the stairs and Africa is at the middle of the stairs,” she says as she points up from her perch on the bottom step. “We have to go far to get to Argentina. It’s not very close.”

“We are going very very far away?” Charlotte asks again. “Reeeaally far away and we have to take macaroni and cheese. They don’t have even Annies in Argentina!” Mia squeals as they both burst into uncontrollable four year-old girl giggles.
While most American children her age are going to pre-school and debating hot topics like what finger paint color looks the best on red construction paper, Mia has already lived a double life. For the past year, she has lived in the wine country of Mendoza, Argentina after her parents decided to take a lifestyle sabbatical.

Vince and Janalee, aka Mommy and Daddy, fled their suburbia existence in Clarendon, Virginia, quit their suit wearing, high stress Washington jobs, sold their cars, rented their house and left on a year long adventure to help a friend’s start up wine tourism business. And they’ve just signed on for one more year abroad. To many people it sounds like living a dream.

While in Argentina, Mia’s mom and dad switched caretaker roles leaving Vince to act as a stay at home dad. Mia’s mommy is the chief of staff for their friend Michael’s wine business, which often leaves Mia asking “Where is Mommy?” instead of her typical “Where is Daddy?” Although they both worked in the states, Mia’s mom was home two days a week.

This quick transfer left Mia on a lifestyle sabbatical of her own, which is why on a week long vacation to the states, Mia constantly tries to explain life in Argentina to her best friend, or “twin” as she calls Charlotte.

Yet, Mia does not make her shift from a yuppie neighborhood where everyone drives energy efficient cars and shops solely at whole foods to a country where they nightly have celebrations that serve solely meat (Asado), seem difficult.

“I go to school all day, and I play all day. Then I go to the pool and swim. They give me lollipops - strawberry lollipops,” she says as she giggles and lets out a lady like snort that’s only endearing when you’re under the age of six.

Mia’s new school is much different from the one she left in Clarendon. The old establishment was in an ancient brick church building and housed a total of 35 Arlington pre-schoolers with arguably over attentive mothers and fathers. In Mendoza, Mia attends school with 300 kindergarten through eighth graders all dressed in the same uniform with a St. Andrews cross on their chest. Her father always brings Mia to class which is very different from the typical societal norms in Argentina. He is the only father in a sea of women.

Mia also notices a difference in how people are disciplined at school. “If you say a bad word, or something, they leave you alone. I don’t know really, I don’t do it,” she clarifies, just in case her parents read this. “In my old school, they would say ‘now don’t say that,’ but in Argentina they just leave you alone.”

During the day, Mia’s new teachers, Ms. Savina teaches in Spanish for the first four hours in the morning and Miss Anita teaches in English for the rest of the day. When she first started at Colegio San Andres, the only Spanish she knew was from Dora the Explorer. Now, she’s not only fluent, but sounds like she she’s a true Argentine in both language and spirit.

She cheered for the Argentine soccer team by shouting “Vamos, Vamos, Vamos Argentina”, wore a jersey and painted her face during the world cup. She wore a falda de pisana (a type of skirt) and waved a handkerchief during her class’ Argentine Independence Day play. And one of her favorite things to do is sing in Spanish.

“La cucaracha, La cucaracha, Ya no puede caminar!!” screeches Mia at the top of her lungs in perfect dialect as she slides on the wood flooring in her pink striped socks. “Charlotte, do you know what that means?” She asks. “The cockroach can’t walk!” Again, both girls break into intense giggles.

Within seconds, the two are serious again. “We have to bring the car seat with us,” instructs Mia as they continued to cram vacation necessities into their strollers. “They don’t use car seats in Argentina. Only babies use car seats there. We need to bring our own. I don’t like slipping around in the car.” She says confidently, as if she’s obviously used this explanation before to show that she is not a baby.

To Mia, the biggest difference is in the driving. “They drive sooooo fast in Argentina. They just drive crazy!” she explains excitedly. Her young brain soaked up the language quickly and clearly one of the results of Mia’s transplant is apparent as she accidentally goes in and out of Spanish.

“First we walk to the car, then I put on cinturon on then we go to the store.” Charlotte looks at Mia bewildered as she tries to figure out what her best friend just said. Mia quickly realizes her mistake and says “First I walk to the car, put the seat belt on and then we go to the store.”

This isn’t the first time this has happened. And don’t be fooled, sometimes she’ll even do it for her own entertainment.

“It’s so fun here. If someone asks you something, you can explain in Spanish,” she laughs “And only some people know what I’m saying! People here can’t speak Spanish either. They sound funny!”

By this time they’ve also added many sweaters, scarves and gloves to the growing pile on the stairs. But surprisingly the two have also found bathing suits and sandals. The amount of stuff has quickly exploded out of their two strollers and into cardboard boxes known as suitcases to the busy four year-old crew. Mia explained to Charlotte that they need both sets of clothes because it’s winter in America, but summer in Argentina.

It was leaving her friends as well as Annie’s Organic Macaroni and Cheese, her favorite comfort food that causes the most anxiety.

“I like America better, I don’t have Charlotte or Sarah or David in Argentina,” she explains as thoughtfully as any four year-old can waving her small stubby hands in the air for emphasis. “And Argentina is a lot different. They don’t really make pink stuff.” Her five year-old priorities are definitely in the right place.

“Charlotte-Darlotte, let’s go to Argentina!” Mia says in a sing-song voice as she drags her friend’s hand to the staircase to take their pretend airplane seats where their jam packed strollers and random articles of clothing are strewed about. “We have to stop in Miami first,” she giggles. “Are you sure you packed the macaroni and cheese?” asks Charlotte earnestly. “Sure!” She shouts as she and Charlotte depart on their last trip via the staircase before she and her “Papi” board their actual flight across the equator. “Say goodbye through the window!”


At 9:53 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

[url= ]Acheter cialis en ligne[/url] [url= ]Acheter du viagra online[/url] [url= ]Acheter cialis en ligne[/url] [url= ]Achat viagra en ligne[/url] [url= ]Acheter du cialis online[/url] [url= ]Acheter viagra [/url]

At 6:36 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I use avast anti virus and it (in my experience) is better than avg, avira and norton. they have a free for home use version [url=]santoramaa[/url]

At 6:41 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

russian dating services [url=]american singles[/url] best online dating women report on men met dating sites

At 5:51 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...


When ever I surf on web I never forget to visit this website[url=].[/url] is filled with quality info. I am sure due to busy scedules we really do not get time to care about our health. In plain english I must warn you that, you are not serious about your health. Recent Scientific Research indicates that nearly 70% of all United States adults are either fat or weighty[url=].[/url] Hence if you're one of these people, you're not alone. Its true that we all can't be like Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie, Megan Fox, and have sexy and perfect six pack abs. Now the question is how you are planning to have quick weight loss? [url=]Quick weight loss[/url] is really not as tough as you think. If you improve some of your daily diet habbits then, its like piece of cake to quickly lose weight.

About me: I am webmaster of [url=]Quick weight loss tips[/url]. I am also mentor who can help you lose weight quickly. If you do not want to go under difficult training program than you may also try [url=]Acai Berry[/url] or [url=]Colon Cleansing[/url] for fast weight loss.

At 8:34 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

arizona nuclear medicine suppliers [url=]imodium[/url] systemic herpes cure stop smoking laser surgery
loraine thompson breast [url=]flomax[/url] blank physical health assement forms [url=]low cost health insurance sd[/url]

At 11:37 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...
[url=]drugs that are endangered[/url] eye scan drug test [url=]cabergoline 30ml[/url]
kids that are drugs abuse
[url=]daily medicine administration[/url] drug amidrine [url=]captopril[/url]
negative effects of drug testing in the workplace htm
[url=]speed rx drug[/url] corruption in congress with healthcare and drug companies [url=]exfoliative dermatitis bisoprolol fumarate[/url] viagra for sale without a prescription [url=]dosage of depakote[/url]

At 1:27 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...
[url=]raltegravir and food and drug interactions[/url] galloway pharmacy [url=]download you dun stomped my heart and mashed that sucker flat[/url]
drugs detroit economy
[url=]foklyn drug[/url] hga drug interactions [url=]td qd pharmacy doses[/url]
cialis severe headache
[url=]internal revenue code health savings account[/url] alzheimer drugs [url=]online pharmacy and bupropion[/url] sarasota pharmacys [url=]rapid weight loss pill[/url]

At 7:13 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

pictures of medieval shoes lauren barounis [url=]cum on clothes[/url] photo of fashion glamour model joey lauren adams nude [url=]old fashioned southern fried chicken recipe[/url]

At 12:28 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

appropriate mourning clothes nine west clothing accessories amp shoes find compare read [url=]taking clothes off[/url] equator clothes processor tv infomerical for deer stage shoes [url=]vegetarian shoes[/url]

At 5:39 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

taboo adult movie series
[url=]black inflatable dildo[/url] sexy zera ranger [url=]bondage supply[/url]
adult short story
[url=]adult stores seattle[/url] ramco n2400 thread lubricant [url=]percentage of contracting genital herpes from oral herpes[/url]
degradation and adult spanking
[url=]hentai oshioki sweetie[/url] starr porn movie [url=]barely legal erotic podcast[/url]
anal sacs of dogs
[url=]wikipedia urethra dildo[/url] wholesale adult lingerie [url=]raped ass sites[/url]

At 5:12 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

sexy cameltoes
[url=]full leghth hentai[/url] isabella soprano porn video office [url=]chubby girls porn[/url]
free wild thornberrys porn
[url=]hentai 3d sex coins[/url] asian teen porn amateur [url=]lost eden 02 gallery hentai[/url]
super princess peach hentai series
[url=]free adult games fo w300i[/url] pictures of sexy couples [url=]hentai maganizine[/url]
manaudou video sexy
[url=]adult video clips and cams[/url] adult umbilical hernias [url=]female masturbating movie[/url]

At 11:37 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

statistics on teen stress [url=]maxaman[/url] untreated prostate cancer psa progression
how do smoke detecters work [url=]casodex[/url] fast online pharmacy percocet [url= ]drug lord of mexico [/url] medical treatment for anerexia for anorexia
president nicknamed sleeping beauty [url=]women s health[/url] multi vitamin and minerals rich in anitioxidants
certificate dog health [url=]kamasutra dotted condoms[/url] smoking scabs [url= ]florida board of pharmacy license check [/url] sports activities after donating blood

At 8:41 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

travel bantam antique travel trailers for sale
[url=]fremont travel agency south america[/url] dubai travel agent yemen air [url=]saint martin hotels expedia[/url]
how to travel between copenhagen and germany
[url=]travel writers picks for accomodation in san francisco[/url] time travel proves preddestination [url=]hawaii tourism information[/url]
travel cost comparison manipur travel [url=]china airlines fire okinawa cause[/url]

At 2:42 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

designer plus sizes eyewear chanel [url=]ebay canvas shoes[/url] columbia shoes sale west virginia university clothes [url=]animal print shoes[/url]

At 3:03 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

medieval shoes designer prom gowns [url=]barbados fashion schools[/url] vans skull print shoes php designer [url=]incubus fashion latex[/url]

At 11:26 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

casinos north east rogue river lottery
[url=]calculating the probability of keno numbers beat the game[/url] blackjack software free casino [url=]roulette wheel drawing[/url]
consequences of illegal gambling
[url=]listing of casinos florida[/url] nonmonetary cost of gambling [url=]jokers comedy[/url]
blackjack net casino online gambling top gambling bonuses [url=]calculate poker odds[/url]

At 3:02 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

gulfport hotel casino indoor pool four jacks casino
[url=]led zepplin tour lottery[/url] dragon quest monsters joker breeding chart [url=]blackjack betting variation[/url]
philadelphia casinos
[url=]spirt winds casino oregon[/url] bingo casinos indiana [url=]basic casino rules[/url]
address to hollywood casino gymnastics las vegas blackjack invitational [url=]groco hf joker valve[/url]

At 7:27 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

ocean city new jersey movie theaters [url=]two for the road[/url] how to become an movie writer garner movie theatre nc
back in action movie [url=]nocturna[/url] against all odds movie superman movie theme song
the wedding date movie debra messer [url=]uncle buck[/url] armagedon movie
great movie soundtracks [url=]ben hur[/url] the simpsons movie bad guy bondage movie sample
the movie eric [url=]horsey[/url] transformers movie guide homer simpson movie

At 11:50 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

movie 1970s voyage [url=]vegas vacation[/url] tom cruise new hitler movie white zombie movie torrent
taipei movie times mirimar [url=]scarecrow[/url] free porno movie clip bootlegs you never pleased me movie line
silent hill the movie [url=]kids in the hall brain candy[/url] james bond movie characters
cheeky movie [url=]holiday wishes[/url] blockbuster movie releases local movie theatres
recent animated superman movie [url=]the devil s advocate[/url] manhattan movie windowshd movie demos


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home