The first shock for me was that I actually had gone through “no shock”. Somehow I got on the taxi on Buenos Aires airport and I felt like at home. Already the taxi driver was a very kind and talkative person- I asked him a lot of questions about the city, political situation and obviously- tango. He had a lot of patience to answer them all.
Though, I cannot say that Buenos is a place in which you fell in love from the first sight. The first view on the suburbs of the city was far from the image that I had in mind: you could easily see the poverty, old, partly destroyed buildings, together with morning cold and people selling tissues on the street – all that created a rather sad picture.
Finally we reached the place where I was supposed to spend three months. Though the street was in very centre of Buenos Aires, I was surprised to discover that I will have a neighbor living on the street- a lady living in a construction of boxes, just next to the luxurious designer shop. That was the beginning of contrasts that I have noticed in Buenos Aires.
I won t be going into details, how was I visiting each part and monument of the city- shortly said, I got lost, not once. But this time I decided to treat it as the best way to learn and know Buenos Aires. Maybe you don’t always need to stick to the most popular and obvious root to reach your final destination?
First days at work- organization Mundo Sano, were both great and difficult.
Everybody who works in a communication area knows perfectly, that a day without at least 20 calls doesn’t count. Also- you need to change your focus very rapidly- from one project to another. Suddenly I was left with only one dedicated project with a silent phone. I must admit that concentration is such luxurious conditions cost me more than normally (together with time zone changes). I got materials, my “guide” in Mundo Sano (amazingly warm person) and was left to develop the communication strategy for Desafio project as a communications consultant.
In parallel I met people that were open, with a sense of humor, and look after me (both from GSK and Mundo Sano side). With my luck, during the second day we have celebrated the birthday of one colleague in the office. In addition, I was introduced to the whole building of people, not only the ones from my NGO’s, and so I could already start to proceed the project. The funny thing- and one of the cultural differences- that everybody kisses here- for hello and goodbye. Literally- with each person within the area of open space. But I must admit that’s a custom that makes people closer and I wouldn’t have anything against to implement it in Poland (don’t know what would be the reaction of some of my colleagues, though).
I was on a different continent , speaking different language (where I had no fluency such as in english), with some cultural differences- but to be honest, I simply felt good. Equipped with all information from GSK side (regarding safety, what to expect, etc.) I felt quite secure.
And so I could have begun to proceed my project….