The Art of Hustle - Crawling Pubs in Buenos Aires
I didn't know what was coming back then. I guess I just imagined that things would work themselves out and maybe, just maybe, I might find some sense of who I was in the process. In the coming two years I would transverse two continents, dozens of countries and learn more about myself than anything else.
I am one who learns by seeing, touching and doing and while on the road in a foreign country where the place, the language and the culture is unknown, this is how we naturally begin to readjust, by seeing and feeling things out.
It is funny how much you can learn when you are silent.
For much of my time in South America, I surrounded myself with people who did not speak English. Sure I did some of the touristy stuff and hung out with a few Americans, Australians and Canadians along the way, this is inevitable when living the hostel lifestyle and traveling.
However upon arriving in Buenos Aires, Argentina, I made sure that my immersion into this beautiful city was authentic. I found a nice room for rent on the top floor of a beautiful old apartment building right on the corner of 9 de Julio y Chile and spent many of my days wandering the beautiful streets of San Telmo, in love with the dirt and grime that mixed with the beautiful buildings and unique culture of this neighborhood. During this time I lived with 5 roommates including 3 Colombians, an El Salvadorian and a Norwegian. Everyone spoke fluent Spanish except for myself and communicating would be quite difficult.
It is amazing what you can learn in silence and solidarity.
From the situation I had endured back home I was still a bit down and alone, here several thousand miles from home. But upon arriving in Buenos Aires, my mind began to open up. This exciting city was ripe with opportunity. The energy here, coupled with the people I would meet, would lift me out of my funk and bring back, motivating me to once again find my youthful ambition and optimism that had made me successful in the first place. It was here that I began to realize what my true motivation was.
Before this point in my life whenever anyone would ask the all important, "What do you want in life?" question, I would spout off a material possession, a monetary goal or simply say to travel the world. These things I learned, were just fumes, not the core of what I really wanted.
While browsing around the online expat community that existed in the city baexpats.org, I came across the Buenos Aires Pub Crawl, a local business that had been started by expats from Atlanta. The thought of moving to a foreign country and starting a business out of thin air would seem absolutely crazy to most people, I was impressed by the bravery of these expats as well as the success they had enjoyed in creating a seemingly popular business. I sent an e-mail to one of the co-founders of the company and asked if they would be so polite to indulge me in doing an interview for my blog LivingBueno.com. I received a reply from Dustin asking me to come in to their office for a sit down, an offer I gladly accepted.
I interviewed Dustin, talking about travel, lifestyle and this gorgeous city which had now become his home. I guess I saw alot of myself in him, a brave young traveler with some business sense, unafraid of trying something that most people thought was crazy. Dustin invited me to attend a pub crawl for free two days later. We met up in Plaza Armenia in the Palermo Viejo neighborhood of the city. Immediately I was intrigued by my surroundings. First a dozen, then two dozen and before too long the pub crawl count had to be near 100 crawlers strong all flocking to this plaza for a night of drunken debauchery.
The energy here was riveting, a palpable excitement in the air that was indescribable. It felt as if we are all truly a part of something special, travelers from all over the world gathered together in this gorgeous setting, pre-funking with free wine and beer while hanging out in a public plaza. The Pub Crawl had created an experience unlike any other, a lasting memory that travelers would take back home with them to tell their friends about "that one crazy night in Argentina".
They had a different kind of hustle.
I observed how much the founders, who attended many of the pub crawls, interacted with the guests. Their networking skills seemed to be what drove their business forward. They had forged relationships with locals bars where their guests would receive free shots and great drink specials as well as free entry and no lines when going to the club at the end of the night.
They networked with guests asking what everyone was doing in BA, not just to get business, but because they were really curious. I would venture to bet this company know more about its customers and its target market than many Fortune 500 will ever care to know.
It is that connection that makes me remember back to that one crazy night in Buenos Aires and write this story today. When anyone asks about the city, I will always refer them to the pub crawl. They have forged an everlasting presence in the city among the expat community and continue to thrive, expanding their business across borders into Santiago, Chile.
In Argentina I learned that if you have a great idea and you really want to do something, just do it. These brave expats didn't plan out every contingency of their plan for domination of the party scene in Buenos Aires, they just jumped in head first and hustled.
They took action, actually gave a fuck about their customers and hustled from every angle until they reaped the rewards of their hard work.
The truth is that if you want a certain lifestyle, if you want to bring your great idea to life, the most important thing to do is
TAKE IMMEDIATE AND CONSTANT ACTION AND BE UNRELENTING IN YOUR QUEST FOR GREATNESS
Anyone can have a great idea, anyone can want to change their position in life, that part is easy. Grinding every single day, negotiating with business owners and gaining credibility and notoriety, that is what is difficult.
To master this hustle you will need a strong will, tough skin and a firm directional focus that will propel you forward through the tough times.
The Laws of Hustle- Rule #1- Focus
You must know where you want to go. Without a clear focus, you are just an explorer with no compass. Find a firm direction, paint a clear image in your mind of where you want to be and be as difficult and stubborn as you need to be, never compromising in your quest to create the dream you have created.