Published: September 8th 2011September 6th 2011
Don't want to get stranded out here!!
I can't believe I have been here for a month!! Time is flying especially now that classes are in full swing. It's crazy to think that most schools in the United States are just beginning. Classes here are pretty difficult for me, I am getting a lot better at understanding what my teachers are saying but it still takes a lot of effort to then put their words into concepts I can understand and get something out of. My literature class is giving me a run for my money, it's tons of reading and it takes me a lot longer to read because I need to look up words to make sure I know what I'm reading. I know going through all of this will pay off in the long run, though. And some of the stories are actually enjoyable when I understand them!
This past weekend we found a bar in my district that plays American sports on their tv. It's called The Corner (and no, it's not to be confused with The Sports Corner dad). It's very very American-the menu was comprised of mostly fried bar food. Thursday a bunch of us went to watch the Badgers play
Our mode of transport, thank goodness there were seatbelts or I would have been a goner
UNLV for the season opener of the football season. And it actually made me a little homesick thinking that all of my friends from home had been hanging out and pregaming all day and I wasn't there to join them. But then I remembered, HEY! I'm in Peru! Not many people can say that. (Well actually quite a few can since 9 million people live just in Lima, but you get my drift).
Saturday there was a trip for international students to a small desert town called Huacachina which is like a little oasis in the desert surrounded by huge sand dunes. It was a cute little town and it was about a 4 hour bus ride from Lima, so not to shabby for being warm and sunny! We got to our hostel and were a little grossed out about the room. It had a pretty strong stench of paint and chemicals and there was zero air circulation so it was pretty stuffy. But hey, our room was only there for us to sleep in so who cares. We hopped in some dune buggies and cruised the dunes which was really exhilarating! We stopped to take some pictures then
About to go down a huuuge dune
were off again to do a little sandboarding! Some people tried to stand on their boards as they went down, but the easiest and fastest(which is always the best) mode of transport was laying on your stomach and heading straight down. It was like sledding in snow face first! It was a lot of fun, but I did end up with sand about everywhere on my body. After sunset we returned to our hostel for a little BBQ and after that, dancing all night! I was sad to leave the sun and return to Lima on Sunday, Mondays always seem to creep up on me.
This past Monday may have been my least favorite of all, however. I had yet to get sick, but at school I ate a chicken empanada for lunch and about half an hour later I started to feel a little nauseous. I still had a class to attend, so I thought I should stick it out. About 5 minutes before my class started I decided there was no way I was going to be able to sit through a class and be able to concentrate while I was focusing on not throwing up. As I was leaving to go to the bus stop it hit me that I would now have to spend more than an hour on a combi since it was close to rush hour, and that did not sound enticing either since I felt that I could throw up without warning. But I had no choice so I hopped on the combi and it was so crowded I had to stand and I had horrible visions of what might happen if I did indeed get sick. It took a lot of willpower, but I made it home with no casualties on the combi! My Senora made me some tea to calm my stomach and it helped a lot and I went to bed feeling not so great, but happy that I didn't get sick. I think the worst part about not feeling 100% in a foreign country is the fact that it's not easy to relax. Also, having to concentrate on listening and speaking in Spanish is extremely tiring especially when sick.
But I got through my little sickness and hope that I don't ever get more sick than that, because dealing with that would not be ideal.
On a brighter note I'm becoming a lot more accustomed to how things work here. There are a ton of things I still view as illogical, but I'm working on getting over it quickly. For example, the sidewalks are a free-for-all and sometimes people like to play chicken with me (nobody decides to scoot to a certain side of the sidewalk so we can easily walk by each other). And I hate losing at chicken, but try as I might I always end up scooting over or we tie because everyone just bumps into me anyways. So just little things like this get on my nerves, but nobody has gotten hurt so it's all good! And certain things have been humbling for me since I'm obviously foreign, and now know what it feels like to be seen as not normal for this country. My professors could be talking about something from a different country, and they have no problem pointing me out and calling me an "extranjera" (foreigner). In which case I blatantly blush and nod my head and hope I answer their question correctly.
But I've been handling myself well! And Spring is just around the corner here! It has warmed up slightly, but I'm just looking forward to not having to wear a jacket all the time.
Go Packers and Badgers!