One night it was raining so hard that the taxi I was in had to let me off, the driver refused to take me back to the hotel because the roads were like lakes. He took me to the Olleros subte stop, I ran out of the cab and into the station, but the trains were shut down indefinitely. I can imagine more desperate situations, but I was pretty much stranded.
I knew of a great empanada place close by, so I spent an hour waiting out the rain and then caught the 152 back to the center. As I was getting on, people asked me questions (How much does it cost? Will it take me to Correo Central?) that I was able to answer. I could even afford to laugh when the bus took a 15 block detour to avoid puddles that had swallowed taxis whole, because I knew where I was.
Putting aside logistics and food—both major considerations, by the way—people made the city familiar. There were accommodating yanquis who let me play tour guide, and argentinos who welcomed me back as if I’d been gone only a few days. This is a precious quality: it implies a picking up of something just put on hold. That’s how I felt about returning to Buenos Aires, and isn’t that a quality of a place that's home?