9:00 a.m. – go to work, usually at a family boutique or bakery
Noon – close store for a few hours (if you didn’t get your bread at noon, it’s too late because everything is closed), have lunch with family, and take a nap.
3 p.m – go back to work
7 pm. – close the store and go home
10 p.m. – serve dinner
11:30 p.m. – get ready for your night out if you’re young (“Sometimes we’d pile into a bus after a couple of hours at a club and head to another club an hour and a half away.”)
6:00 a.m. – stay out until then and have breakfast before going home to sleep
Background Information and Context:
While talking about how the lifestyle in Argentina is completely different from that in America, I noted that we usually have dinner at 8 or even 9 p.m. whenever I’m at her house – much later than most American families – and remembered that she had told me, the first time I had dinner with her family, that “everything goes late in Argentine.” To get a better idea of this, I asked her to outline a normal day in Argentine. What she gave me was based on her experience when she went back to Argentina at age 18 and the lifestyle of her cousins back then.
The informant summed it up well when she explained that Argentine people live by the motto “You’ve got to work to live, not live to work.” Whereas most Americans maximize their 9-to-5 work day, barely taking time for breaks and lunch, Argentines make time for a hearty lunch, family time, and a nap. Night life for young people in Argentina seems extreme compared to even the more adventurous students at USC.