So Montevideo is Mecca for small children. Starting at age four, they hail and ride public buses alone here.

Uruguay doesn't *do* schoolbuses; they put all their funding into public transportation and children ride for free.

I see the niņitos at the McDonald's in the plaza near my house, Portones. They're unaccompanied, eating their papas fritas and milkshakes.

In high school, they start going to clubs at all hours. It's social suicide to show up before 2 a.m.

They have these terrible uniforms---white pinafores or lab coats with floppy blue bows in front. But they tear them off on the ride home from school so that they look cool when they go to McDonald's.

Oh, yeah, and school only lasts three and three quarter hours a day. Until college, of course, when classes are every other day.

betholindo at 1:42 p.m.

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