Why Argentina? That’s what almost everyone asks me when I tell them about my upcoming year. Most of the time I only tell the short version, but in reality the decision-making process was a lot more complicated.
When I started thinking about a year abroad, I actually wanted to go to Scandinavia or maybe Eastern Europe. At some point I met a volunteer who was in Argentina at an exchange organization fair, and from then on Latin American countries also became an option for me.
At first, however, it was very difficult for me to decide on something or to rate the countries. That’s why I spent a long time looking at the countries and creating tables in which I wrote down information on various criteria. In a further step, I rated the information with points and came up with the countries that would make the most sense and fit my wishes best.
But even after that, I still didn’t know exactly what I wanted. I went to my first selection interview with 13 possible countries. Even during my AFS selection weekend, I was still open to just about anything.
But when I had to give in my country wishes a little later, it was actually clear to me: my dream country is Argentina. I had also indicated further countries, as second choices Chile, Slovenia and the music program in Hungary and in addition Costa Rica, Paraguay and Slovakia, but from then on my dream was Argentina.
But why Argentina of all places?
To be honest, I can’t explain it completely. It had very few points on my tables and it was definitely not the most rational decision. But somehow my gut feeling told me that this was the right decision.
Argentina fascinates me because the country is more diverse than almost any other country and unites almost all climate zones in one country. Also the famous sights like Tierra del Fuego, the Iguazú waterfalls, the Salinas Grandes, the glacier Perito Moreno, Bariloche or cities like Buenos Aires or Salta are unique and incredibly beautiful. I am also fascinated by the mentality and the Latin American lifestyle.
In the end, I’m very happy that I listened to my gut feeling, because I don’t regret the decision to go to Argentina in the least so far. Even though the bottom line was that I made a completely different decision, it helped me a lot to create these tables and award the points, because it allowed me to compare my gut feeling with what would be rational. In the end, however, it’s always best to choose what your gut feeling tells you.