One of my GAP Experiences - Argentina

As part of Dave’s personal Tatori goals and preparation for life, Dave spent 3 months in Argentina working on a ranch where tourist can come stay and experience the Argentinian culture first hand. Dave’s next trip is working in Alaska on a fishing boat earning money, followed by three months of teaching English in Spain (after trekking in Scotland for two weeks with his mother), then working in New Zealand on farms. One of the really cool things that Dave is doing when he can is he is experiencing full cultural immersion while also earning his keep through taking advantage of working for his room and board. Below is one of his journal experiences regarding goats in Argentina! As a side note, with the help of his two GAP coaches, Dave is creating each experience with the following intentions:

  • Each experience is to gain specific experiences to meet his personal growth goals and long term career goals. Dave prefers to keep his personal growth goals private at this time.

  • To learn to work with his hands, in remote cultures and live with gratitude

  • To pay for as much of his journey on his own through sequenced planning with his coaches to experience multiple personal growth experiences, to make our world a better place and to develop sustainable self-reliance in the next year.

Dave shares in his own words, "I was a bit hesitant at first to write this blog, viewing the contents that would be therein as confidential and experiential based. Then I thought, "Nah. The world needs to know about the word of Goat". Quick frame of reference for all the story-stopping fact checkers: I was in the Andes Mountain range, working on an estancia (ranch) for 3 months, and amongst a very simple diet of potatoes, onions, various greens from the garden, our meat was the goat.

Upon arrival, I found the meat locker, a submerged concrete structure were meat was kept cool and fresh. I jumped at the opportunity to keep it stocked, which meant weekly slaughters... 20 minutes away at the Goat Master's dwelling. Up the hill overlooking a cool, dry landscape, where a winding river had personally seen to roughly sawing canyons and slopes between once good neighboring mountains. Inhaaaaaaaaaaaaaale. Exhaaaaaaaaaaale. The chemistry of these neighbors is quiet and vast. The Goat Master is a not a man. He is a product of his skills and time, his language and culture, more of mountainous environment than person. He is Diogenes. He is gaucho. I devote myself to be his pupil.

Over my time, I watched. My spanish was rusty, and Diogenes spoke in riddles. So we communicated by gestures and grunts. It was better to watch. His goats wandered on the hillside, and with a comical yet cultural call, he told the goats to come back or keep grazing. And they always came back. During the slaughtering, he picked a goat with an intuitive eye. Why that one? Is it because its old? Young? Male? Female? He responded "Its the one". At first I wanted to kill a goat. Yeah, cool thing, tell my friends, blah blah blah. Then over some yerba mate one morning, he told me how it takes a gaucho 10 years to learn how to kill and skin a goat. HAHA! I could hear the ego tumbling painfully down the cliffs and goat trails, smashing horrendously disfigured into goat caca, where it would remain for the rest of the stay.

May I also take this time to say "goa-bless you". You are all smiled upon from the humble goat, Pan, and all other horned, hoofed, and wild things in the world. Chivo, Cabra, Goat, are all names for what I ingested so much of. I developed a whole vocabulary to frame all goat-related things. The reason for this scripture development was because I immersed myself into the goat. Between mastering the Asado and eating other's scraps, here is a glimpse into Goatology.

  • Patagoatnia: Region of great goat consumption.

  • Goma: Goat coma.

  • Grippin': Tripping on goat (Psychidelically) or to have "beef" or conflict with someone because of excess goat consumption.

  • Forgoat: loss of memory due to the right amount of goat consumption.

  • Gweek: An entire week of eating goat at least once a day. For the realest.

  • Nogophobia: A totally rational fear of no goat in the near future.

  • "Goa-Bless You": To bless someone with goat in mind, and to a more shamanic meeting, to rub goat over one's body to absorb its power.

These are a fraction of the Goatology, which is ever expanding. I honor the goat and thank it for supplying us with food. It pays tribute to the goat, which examines, your worth, past, future present, you in your whole cosmic entirety, then shrugs and states “Who cares? You're just another blade of grass for a humble goat to eat.”

#gapyear #internationaltravel

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