Funny T-Shirts

08Nov06

I happened to be looking at cafepress.com and found a couple of t-shirts that I think may make it onto my Christmas list. Let me know what you think.


Welcome!

05Nov06

A few days ago my server exploded so I’ve setup a new home with iPowerweb. I’ll work on bringing the old content back, but in the meantime follow the links if you’re looking for my photos or Jen and Patrick’s webpage.


Bullet Points

30May05

I was doing a pretty good job of keeping a journal up until classes started… and then not so much. My effort kind of died, like this guy here. I have however been keeping a bulleted list of the highlights from each day so I’ll hopefully be able to go back one day and fill in the spaces in between. Last Friday’s entry, for example, reads: Test, Semillas, Test, French fries, Contabar, Hyperbar, sleep a lot...which equates to a journal entry something along the lines of:

 

So today started out with a 2 hour grammar test. Then we went to Semillas (the Women’s foundation in DF) for a site visit and presentation, had lunch, and rounded out the day with another 2 hour test. Needless to say, the first thing us old kids did was find a bar and order a beer. Prem tried to practice his spanish and order chips and salsa at the same time and ended up getting us a plate of french fries. You being literate and therefore moderately intelligent probably already know that they don’t really eat chips, salsa, and Taco bell in Mexico. Now we do too. After the cervezas we headed home for siestas and dinner and then met back up at the school to properly go out for Cory’s 21st birthday. We started with a cantabar (karaoke) and then headed to Hyperbar (the club Prem, Pro, and Suz had been to earlier). Prem’s brother Enrique did a great job of shuttling the 18 gringos around the city and negotiating cover prices with the club owners. Afterwards I took a cab home and slept a lot.

Just so you know what I’ll be writing about next, Saturday and Sunday’s bullet points are… Cuarnevaca, bootleg Episode III, Eli’s, Bar and Chipoltepec park, stupid dog, mercado, shark empanada, shrimp soup, Episode III is Spanish


Condessa

23May05

Homework tonight was to talk to Ignacio about llorona and the Virgen de Guadalupe. Ignacio didn’t know the words to llorona, so we looked them up on the internet and he rapped them. Today was also Cory’s birthday so we went out for dinner. We ended up walking to an Italian restaurant in Condessa. The food was good and we enjoyed the evening. Afterwards, we walked Heather home and called a cab from the payphone on the corner. The cab never actually showed, and after someone threw some fruit at us we decided it would be better to walk home. The walk back was nice and was highlighted with a naked guy walking down the street (which was weird).


Bazaar Sabado

21May05

Woke up around 8 and Ignacio and I had fresh fruit for breakfast. Afterwards I met up with most of the other students and we went to the Bazaar Sabado. There were lots of paintings and other artsy-type things in the market. Then we visited the houses of Frieda and Trotsky. We did a good bit of walking, but the bazaar especially was absolutely gorgeous.

After Trotsky’s house, a portion of the group went home and the rest of us went to El Centro for lunch. EL Centro is a large square with vendors, café’s, street performers, etc. I took a small nap when I got home and then Karolina and Ignacio made chicken with mole for dinner. After that we went to the Hardrock café to meet some of the other AIU students. There was a wedding this afternoon which they were celebrating in addition to graduation.


Fuimos al Zocolo y el Templo Mayor. The Mexica were an incredible people, creating a city in the middle of a lake and using a system of chinampas for agricultural. They were also very violent and believed heavily in human sacrifice. We also visited the cathedral and had lunch on top of a building overlooking the cathedral square and el templo. Lunch was incredible (although a little expensive) and the view was gorgeous. After our tours we returned to the school and had a small break before hearing our first speaker. Idya Adler talked to us about the differences in Mexican and American cultures and demonstrated instances where implicit communications can cause difficulties if you don’t know the culture. For instance, in Mexico, if you ask directions and the person doesn’t know an answer they will look away and then make something up to avoid saying “I don’t know”. The look away is the clue that you should then thank them and ask someone else. After the speaker we went to Xochomilca (where they have the canals) and spent some time floating on a pair of boats. Overall it was a great day and my Spanish is improving fairly quickly.


We’re here!

19May05

We’re here!! I finished packing last night around 12:30 and then had a good bit of homework I needed to get done before we left. I finally got to bed around 2:30, but had to get up at 4:30 to leave for the airport. Dad’s flight left at 7:30, so we got there at 6:15 and quickly said goodbye to him. I ran into Pro on the way in and it just so happened our seats were already together. Naturally, that stroke of good luck meant it wouldn’t be necessary to work on our presentation for Monday like we’d planned.

The flight was smooth and came complete with a flavorless omelet and really good coffee. I realized as we touched down that I’d forgotten to fill in the customs form and then once we got to baggage claim Pro and I noticed that we’d left our baggage claim checks on the plane. The security guard let us through after checking our passports and I got lucky at customs and didn’t need to be searched. We took a bus to the school and stored our luggage for the afternoon while we took the Turibus (tour bus) around the city for a few hours.

Tomorrow we’ll visit the Templo Mayor and Zocalo (big square/market). My family is really nice. Karolina met us at the airport as it turns out she was in charge of organizing a lot of our trips through the local university. I met Ignacio later in the evening and he took me back to the apartment and gave me a tour while Karolina finished helping the other students meet up with their families. Afterwards we made dinner- tortillas, cheese, ham, and avocado quesadilla style. I’m really glad to have internet here so I can keep in touch with everyone back home. I’m having a great time so far and although the Spanish was a little slow to kick in it’s starting to come back to me.


Preparations

18Apr05

I haven’t really used this much, but hopefully that will change as I get ready to go to Mexico and Spain. I’ve been to two prep meetings for OIE, two for Spain, and one for Mexico. My last prep meeting (Mexico) is tomorrow afternoon. So far, I haven’t done much planning other than attend the meetings, but my last day at work is April 29th and we won’t leave for Mexico until the 19th. I’ll post a few updates once I start preparing in earnest and will try and continue as I travel abroad.


Returning Home

26Mar05

The first day back isn’t that bad. It gives you time to relax and get back to normal, but the second day back sucks. I really don’t want to go back to school and I certainly don’t want to go back to work for the rest of the semester. This spring break has been one of my favorites and I’ll be sad to see it finish.


Wake up call was 6:30 and we had to meet in the Paris lounge at 7:30. Stood in line for a long time, walked straight through customs, loaded the cars, and headed home (9:45).