First Stop – Rosario!

Cornell Hillel is Rosario, Argentina! This post is by Dan Cohanpour and Sarah Cutler; photos by Alicia Glick.

This is so exciting – we made it to Argentina! After a 10-hour red-eye flight (complete with turbulence) to Buenos Aires and a four-hour bus ride replete with snacks and games of Contact, we made it to our beautiful hotel in Rosario!

We got a very insightful debriefing from Viviana, the local coordinator for the Joint Distribution Committee (JDC) in Argentina. She gave us some much-needed historical information about the socioeconomic situation for the Argentinian Jewish community after the economic collapse. We learned about the governmental influence behind the crash, as well as the steps made by charity organizations – particularly the JDC – to help support local organizations within the Jewish community. The lecture provided some background before we began doing service work in the community.

We left the hotel to go on a quick walk to get our bearings in Rosario. There were several lawyers’ and doctors’ offices (including a “Hernia Center”…good to know), bakeries and a ton of beautiful parks. Since we took up a lot of sidewalk and crosswalk space, we interfered a fair amount with Rosario’s traffic, none of which is governed by any visible traffic lights.

We returned to the hotel for much-needed showers, then went out to a delicious dinner at a restaurant overlooking the Paraná River. We ate rolls, salad, mozzarella sticks, chicken, pasta and ice cream…we’ve all agreed we’re going to gain a significant amount of weight – but as Rabbi Scott reminded us, this is a Jewish trip, so that seems only fitting. We felt even more out of shape as we looked out of the restaurant’s windows to see what appeared to be the entire population of Rosario exercising outside the restaurant – at the gym across the street, on the trail near the restaurant, and in a small field with pump-up music.

We ended the night bonding as a group and getting to know each other further at the hotel, dancing a long to some Argentinian music as we enjoyed some traditional Argentinian Malbec. We are so excited about these next few days and cannot wait to meet the local community members! Viva Argentina!

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April 1, 2014 at 3:39 PM




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