We’re all thinking about it and accusing others of propagating it and spreading no little bit ourselves. I’d hate for you to think we here in the southern hemisphere, where the toilet bowl spins the other way due to Coriolis, after all, are immune to it.
I was told, before coming down, that Santiago would be pleasant and that I would broil in Buenos Aires. Readers of this space will note that we were very hot in Santiago. Day time highs were in the 90s, lows in the mid 70s, and the apartment had no A/C. So far in Buenos Aires, the highest temperature we’ve seen is 75, lows have been in the 60s, and, of course, we have A/C in Buenos Aires (which no one could predict as we Resident Professors make our own living arrangements in Buenos Aires and live in the same apartment in Santiago). In other words, we’ve been very comfortable in Buenos Aires and were hot in Santiago.
Were we lied to? Did former Resident Professors, those lying academics, put over some Fake News on us?
Of course not.
It’s simply an accident of sample size and our taking a bit of an unusual approach. My predecessors who have advised me came first to Buenos Aires and did not reach Santiago until March while we chose to arrive there in January. To put that in terms of equivalent northern hemisphere months my predecessors usually get to Santiago in the first of September while we arrived end of July. You can see the issue.
Moreover, Buenos Aires, where we’ve been just a few days, is in the midst of an unusually cool stretch. This morning when we went out it was in the low 60s with a very strong wind. The result is that Mary was cold and I pleasantly cool. We walked about a mile to Avenida de Libertador where Mary turned right to run and I likewise raised my pulse via chemical means at a lovely coffee shop. As I sat drinking very fine coffee many Argentines studied me. They were wrapped up, some in thick jackets, as I sat in shorts and a light shirt. I was a little cool but, based on the advice that I would broil, I literally have no warmer clothes. Well, that’s not true, I have some pants – professionalism and all that – but I’m not wearing pants on a weekend just because it’s in the 60s. Not here, not there, not anywhere.
Last night we went out exploring and found a great supermarket. It felt almost American in scale and presentation of choice. Of course, once we went to checkout we were back in South America. We had to take a disk and show its barcode to a little machine which then sent us to aisle 4 where…we waited in line much like we would have normally. No idea what the little disk thing was for but, so far, taking a number seems to be the way to be the order of business on this continent.
On the way back, we were caught in an amazing downpour. I hiked around Iguazu for a couple of days scared to death my phone or insulin pump would get soaked and die (ala our trip to Ireland several years ago). So I carried ziploc bags and a protector I bought for the pump and…it never rained, though it was forecast both days. I went out for a few minutes in Buenos Aires and exposed them both. Fortunately, neither got too wet and yet live. I can’t say the same for our shoes. The streets flooded nicely, which we’d been warned about. I couldn’t quite leap the streams at the corners and Mary didn’t come close.
It quit raining just as we got back to the apartment, of course. By which time we were soaked and Mary was shivering. I bet the folks who told us about Buenos Aires will be surprised to learn that. The empanada shop around the corner didn’t open for twenty minutes after our return and by the time I went back out to place an order, the streets had drained. So the sewers of our neighborhood were almost up to the task but not quite. Or it wasn’t as big a downpour as we thought. The empanadas were spectacular.
Of course, the truth is our sample size on weather is very small. Three days in Santiago and, to date, two days in Buenos Aires. That isn’t nearly enough weather data upon which to draw any conclusions but it’s human to want to. And of course, we arrived in Santiago almost six weeks eariler than those advising us. I’m sure during the next month I’ll get very hot here in Buenos Aires, as I do without much heat, and by the time we go back to Santiago, a month on toward fall things will, hopefully, have cooled a bit there.
Still, so far, we’ve roasted in Santiago and been chilled in Buenos Aires, quite opposite that predicted. In the spirit of 2017, I should rail about FAKE NEWS and dastardly lies. Or maybe, I’ll just have a bit more coffee and chill.