Around The Yard: Jessica Luo

Returning to for a fifth season, "Around The Yard: Life As A Harvard Student-Athlete" explores life away from the playing fields for select Harvard student-athletes through their own first-person narrativeFor a full list of blog entries, click here.

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Jessica Luo
Women's Golf
March 6, 2019

“You play golf for Harvard? What’s that like?”

The first thought that comes to mind when I’m asked this question is “unbelievable.” And the longer I’ve spent on the team, the more that answer rings true. This past winter break, I had the privilege of traveling to South America with my teammates to train while experiencing it’s unique and riveting culture. Over the course of two weeks, we golfed, ate, danced, and toured our way through Argentina and Uruguay.

Our first stop was bustling Buenos Aires, the beautiful and heavily European-influenced capital city of Argentina. We stayed in the Palermo Soho neighborhood, which was painted with brilliant and quirky graffiti pieces and young, hip eateries. As soon as we landed, we were taken on a walking graffiti tour, where we were shown several pieces that encapsulated historical and political significance, as well as several pieces that simply showcased the local culture of the Palermo area. We even had the opportunity to take a tango class—taught by an instructor who was determined to convert us all into professional dancers by the end of our 2-hour class. Personally, my favorite activity in Buenos Aires was the cooking class that was planned for us by our wonderful tour guide Augustina. We learned how to make three distinct and delicious South American dishes from scratch: empanadas, pasta, and a dulce de leche soft serve.

After a week we in Buenos Aires we flew to San Martin de los Andes, a small city tucked away between the mountains in the Argentinian region of Patagonia. Here we just happened to run into the president of Argentina while playing Chapelco Golf Club!

Our final destination was Jose Ignacio, Uruguay, a popular beach vacation destination, where we had the pleasure of playing a local golf tournament for three days. We spent the rest of our time exploring the small shops and local boutiques, and eating delicious seafood at waterfront restaurants. We even had the opportunity to ride horses at the Estancia Vik, a beautiful ranch located just a few miles from the beach.

At times I still can’t believe that a month ago I was in South America—golfing with locals, eating ridiculous amounts of Argentine barbeque, riding horses, making empanadas, tango-ing, and so much more. I’m incredibly grateful to be part of a team that supports not only my athletic endeavors but also my personal growth; through this trip I’ve been able to broaden my horizons and learn so much more about such a different and fascinating culture.