Nice people in BsAs

sergio

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This sort of thing happens once in awhile. I know someone here who lost a very large amount of money and had it returned by an elderly couple. Over the years I've read about one or two similar stories taking place in Argentina. It's far from typical, however, so don't be misled. Could it happen in New York? Why not? Is New York inhabited exclusively by uncaring, dishonest people - any more than Buenos Aires? A number of years ago I met friends at the airport of a major US city. We took the train back to the city from the airport. One of my friends was a professional photographer. He put his equipment on the overhead rack and forgot it. I called the station and spoke to the person at the lost and found (a concept that doesn't exist here I am afraid). A passenger had discovered the equipment, worth many thousands of dollars, and turned it in. The next day we picked it up - everything was there and in perfect condition.
So what is the purpose of your post? To show that New Yorkers are a bunch of rotten thieving no-goods while Porteños are caring, honest, kind folk? It's a bit more complex I think.
 

tangobob

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The heart of any city is it’s people, and as you have found Buenos Aires has a golden heart.
In the short time I have spent there I have accumulated numerous friends, real friends who would move mountains.
Of course there are rougues, and taxistas who will rip you off, but these represent a real minority.
 

jp

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I might be missing something - but where is he denigrating new york and new yorkers? He just posed a question...

Friend of mine had her wallet stolen recently, and it was returned to her a few days later by a cab driver who found it discarded in his cab. His daughter had rung the number on her gym membership card to try and find a way of getting it back to her.

Another friend left her laptop in the back of a cab after a night out. She went straight to the police to report it stolen, and when she got back to her flat at 3am the taxi was waiting outside her flat with her laptop. Taxi driver refused to take any money, just said "he wanted his daughter to grow up in a good world".

Sure, no reasons why it couldn't happen in london or new york, but I've heard this story (people going out on a limb to reunite strangers with lost property) plenty of times whilst I've lived in Buenos Aires, and almost never back home.
 

cujodu

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Good things can happen anywhere but in my experience they're the exception rather than the rule in Buenos Aires. I no longer shop at most vegetable stands and carnicerias because I am consistently overcharged because of my american accent and I'm tired of arguing about the price, I must meticulously study the map before I head off in a taxi knowing that they will be taking me a roundabout route if I don't know the way, the disgusting feeling of fingers in my back pocket on the subway, the downward looking eyes of my neighbors rather than a friendly "hello". Of course it could happen in NYC, NYC is a much friendlier city than BA.
 

RWS

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cujodu said:
. . . . the disgusting feeling of fingers in my back pocket on the subway . . . .
This, at least, is easily remedied: simply carry your wallet in an inside, buttoned pocket of your suitcoat or odd jacket. Of course, if you're not a man . . . .
 

sergio

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jp....The writer was denigrating New York and New Yorkers with his / her title "Could this happen in New York"? It doesn't take much understanding of linguistic subtlety to know that this is meant as sarcasm, the clear implication being that such a thing could not happen in New York! I am really happy to hear so many accounts of honest Porteños. I personally know some exceptionally honest and honorable local people . On the whole, however, I find a far greater tendency to take advantage of western foreigners here than in other countries I know.
 

LiXueLee

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Sergio! "The writer" responded to your comment in her blog post, and I am posting it here as well!!

Sergio, I appreciate your sticking up for New York, but I do think that your reaction is a bit strong in comparison to my rather passive title “Would this Happen in New York?” True enough, it did imply that the blazer might not have been returned in New York, but I hardly spewed invective about my own country or about New York City specifically. Incidentally, my husband is from a suburb of the city, my sister-in-law lives in the city, my father-in-law works in NY, I have family that lives in Manhattan, we know many wonderful people from New York. That does not change the fact that I would say, pound for pound, big city to big city, the people of Buenos Aires are as a whole, warmer and more helpful. Does that mean I hate New York? Does that mean New Yorkers do not extend a helping hand? Does that mean that Americans suck? No. I would also say that Argentinians are warmer and more helpful than the populations of other large cities in which I have lived, such as Madrid, Taipei and London. There, does that take some of the sting away?

It’s sort of sweet though, that you’re sticking up for the poor defenseless people of New York!
 
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