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Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Stay Home and Be Counted

October 27, 2010 has been declared a national holiday in Argentina due to the 2010 Census.  The thought being that by declaring a national holiday and removing the need to leave the house, everyone will then be home when the census workers stop by.  Interesting logic.  We are taking advantage of Jon's day off by traveling to Puerto Madryn and hoping that Jorge Newberry will be a ghost town and our flight takes off on time. 

Here are some interesting facts about the Argentine Census:
  • There is a fear that criminals will disguise themselves as census workers to gain access to your house and rob you, so the recommendation is not to let anyone inside.  
  • This is the first year since the late 1800s that African-Argentine and indigenous people will be counted (for real?!).  According to the previous census numbers, there are NO people of African descent living in Argentina.  (This is in contrast to the estimated 2 MILLION people of African descent that actually live here.)
  • The entire country has the day off, but since many of the census workers are also school teachers, school has been canceled for Thursday, Oct 28th as well.  Apparently it's not fair that everyone gets a day off but the teachers.  Somehow the fact that they volunteer for the service and are paid for it has escaped everyone's minds.  And that people normally work 5 days a week. Details, details...
  • As with most government-initiated projects, there is widespread skepticism about the census.  Who knew being counted was so controversial?
In other national news, the ex-president, Nestor Kirchner has reportedly died of a heart attack this morning.  Mr. Kirchner is also the husband of Argentina's current president, Christina Kirchner, who is wildly controversial.  Never a dull day. 

1 comment:

  1. You're hilarious. Hopefully this means traffic will be nonexistent? Unless other Argentineans decide NOT to stay home and be counted? Are you driving or flying down? ENJOY! So jealous! :) <3 MEG