Monday, December 29, 2008

Host Family and Xela

So on my second day here I had to get from Guatemala City to Quetzaltenango, which is about 5 hours away, so I got a taxi to the bus station and a bus to Quetzaltenango, which is nicknamed Xela, prounounced SHEY la. The bus was long, not much else to say about it, I listened to music on my ipod and watched alot of the scenery. I was most suprised to see developments and gated communities... We stopped once to go to the bathroom and get something to eat, but I was afraid the bus would leave without me and so I only went to the bathroom and didn´t eat, foolish move on my part because by the time I got to Xela I was starving. When we finally did get here, after a breathtaking decent into the valley (just to top all of the incredible views on the way) the bus stopped in the middle of the road and everyone got off and collected thier bags while trying not to get hit by passing (angry) drivers. I was approached by a cab driver and he helped me get my bag and then off we went to zona 1, the area where my host mom lives. When we get there we get a little bit lost as he tries to find the address and when he finally finds the right block there are police. So we go around the block and try to get in on the other side but it is way after the address I have written down, so we go back around the block and proceed on foot... he was extreamly nice for continueing to help me find her. When we get to her house no one is home and we tried calling with his cell phone but no one answers, so he goes down the street and talks to some women who are standing in the door, after he tells me that I can go there. When I get there they tell me (in spanish, which I understood, yay!) that I am welcome to leave my stuff there, and stay there or go into town, etc. I find out that they are another spanish school and they have a large room full of computers. So, I drop my stuff off with them and walk around town. While I am walking I stumble on a park where I spot some stands with food in the distance, this is perfect... I get some food, basically a meal (tacos and coke) for less then 2$ american and then sit in the park to eat. Of course this is where the fun begins, but ill write more about the park another day.

After I eat I go back to the spanish school and they call my host mom, who is home now, she comes by and we go back to her house. She has a nice house, two floors, I meet her daughter, gaby, and she indicates rooms for her son and nephew, but I have yet to see them. My host mom´s name is Ana, btw. After the introduction and tour of the house I finally get to shower, unpack and relax for a bit. Dinner is at 730, and I read until then. When I go down for dinner we sit down with Gaby and her fiance... Ana tells me that the meat is pollo (chicken) but I swear it was actually ham... good thing im not keeping kosher... After dinner I tried to sleep, but the homesickness took over for a bit and so I listened to some good old american Car Talk on my ipod and then finally went to sleep.

This morning I woke up around 7 for breakfast and then a short walk to the school, I met my teacher, he is awesome. Very funny and very expressive. We practiced different forms of past tense, which was good because I suck at tenses. After that I came back home for lunch and then walked around a bit. When I got back to the house Gaby and Ana were watching TV so I sat down to watch with them... They were watching a show that takes place in Miami but is all in spanish... it was a court room type show and I understood some... After that Gaby went to go on the computer and I watched more TV, there are alot of channels that come in in English and have spanish subtitles, so I rotted my brain with MTV... just like at home...

of course now I am starting to feel sick, like a fever, anyone know how to say accetamenaphine in spanish?


Marie said...

I am so proud that you are taking this trip. It is definitely not easy to be surrounded by a foreign culture, even when you know the language. Hang in there sweetie! You talked about a trip to the volcano, there also appears to be a Cathedral "the Yellow Cathedral" in a town north of Xela. Try to get a small group of students together to go to one or both of these sites. All the best, Momribs

Marie said...

The Yellow Cathedral is in San Andre.