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Monday, January 8, 2007

Saturday night, & first day of classes

Well, didn´t get to update yesterday because it was Sunday and the Internet place was closed. BTW-Let me just say sorry for any grammatical errors or spelling errors I make. I know it doesn´t generally bother the general public, but it bothers me! I am on a spanish computer and it is a bit different!
Anyways. Saturday night, el seis de enero, is an odd mixture of holidays (in my opinion). Imagine Halloween for adults (think skanky costumes, bad makeup, and scary masks) mixed with the 4th of July (fireworks, a parade, parties, street vendors), mixed with something like Dancing in the District or Knoxville´s big bash downtown. There were a ton of people crunched into about 2 blocks around a park. There were street vendors selling yummy-smelling but weird looking food and the usual trinkets. A stage was set up with a band, either called reggaeton or playing reggaeton, playing music with people dancing. A parade with men on stilts and firebreathers, etc. Oh yeah, and a LOT of cross-dressing!! haha. The guys were kind of funny, because they all put on the catholic school skirts and did their hair in about 20 different little spikes. I didnt actually see anyone asking for alcohol, or selling alcohol, but I am sure it was present....
I spent most of the time in the house, watching the family play cards (Suca´s cousin and sister and her son) and watching them eat. I say watching because I had a bad migraine, so I was not feeling up to participating. We went outside a couple of times to watch the festivities, where I was repeatedly asked by little children to move because they couldn´t see around my tall self :) Haha
Yesterday was again, a whole lot of nothing. I think the only notable thing I did was have a good convo with Suca about shopping and watch a lot of Spanish TV to try and pick up new vocabulary.
TODAY! The first day of classes. I was so excited last night, I couldn´t sleep. Weird, huh? I can usually sleep very easily! We met at 8 this morning and took a written exam to test our level, and I think I am level 6 out of 10? If my understanding is correct. Afterwards, the group of us took a tour around the city center, with the director pointing out all the notable sites and telling us some history. When we went back to the school, we were given our schedules and our groups, and we had a ¨culture class¨which was listening to an older gentleman tell us about the Mongolians coming to the Americas with the wooly mammoth (Mam-MOOTH) and the eventual colonization of South and Central America by the Spanish with Cortez. Interesting, and I understood a decent bit of it, which I supplemented with my previou Latin American culture class (Thank you, Dr. Thomas!)
Then, I had my first REAL class, a one-on-one with a professor named Ruth. For an hour and a half, she drilled me on the different form of the commandments, like ¨pick this up¨in the informal singular, formal singular, informal to a group, and formal to a group.
My brain is fried, and the rest of the day, I will have two classes more than I had today! And everything will be in Spanish! I spoke for a while with a guy from britain named Jamie that is about my age. He is here for 3 weeks, and he knows hardly a lick of Spanish, so it was all in English (I´m bad, I know) I need to stick with Spanish, but it was SO nice to be able to talk in English for a while with someone!
Anyways, tomorrow is another day much like today, and Wednesday, I think starts dance and cooking classes :) Watch out men of the US! I am going to be a Latin terror in the kitchen and on the dance floor! Haha
Thanks for everyone´s encouragement, and if you have ANY helpful tips regarding learning Spanish (I am looking for the ¨por¨song) please give them to me!! Thanks, and love and hugs to all!

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