Wednesday, September 23, 2009
Second month in Colombia
We celebrated another month in Colombia with green bean soup, crusty bread, cheese, and another cake. This one was not as good as the tres leches (wrong bakery) but it was festive!
Some new things that we learned this month are:
The limeade is really sour and we like it!
They have chicken flavored chips (Eliza would be so happy to have her meat and chips all in one bite!)
There is a special cheese that you dip into your hot chocolate. It is like a mild string cheese and it gets all melty and yummy.
School books/backpacks are very heavy. At some point we will need to get backpacks with wheels.
We never have to worry about parking.
We lost four jackets this month. It is impossible in this city to get them back. There is no lost and found.
When you are sick, it is because you breathed in too much cold air, or you did not wear enough clothes. People her are constantly covering their mouths with scarves to keep the cold out. They make a special red fleece vest for layering under your clothes to keep you healthy.
Dish soap comes in a tub. Colombians think it is "gross" to put all your dirty dishes in a sink full of hot water and soap. Instead, you scrub the dishes first, and then rinse them off.
Our hot water heater heats water as it comes, so the more pressure, the hotter the shower.
The Colombian word for "cool" is "Chevere!" They say this all the time.
Bogotonians are known for adding "ita" and "ica" to the ends of all their words like "momentica" "cafecito" "Martica" "Helenita" "pancito" etc.
Bogota has a youth orchestra.
Greetings last a very long time and often include "Hola" "Como esta?" "Y tu familia?" "Que mas?" "Dime" "Y que mas?" Aaron is into this, but Jen finds it exhausting.
Colombians have tremendous fruit salads. They are often served with shredded cheese, honey, ice cream, or heavy cream on top.
Colombians like little things. There are lots of miniature things, including chairs and little spoons. Dessert and coffee are always served with little mini-spoons (cucharitas).
There are street jugglers/performers on every major intersection. One time we saw three people standing in top of each other all juggling together. We like to leave them tips.
Choir warm-ups are universal.
Even expensive private schools here lack books, supplies, and have leaky roofs.
For 50 cents, you can get a really good "tinto" which is strong black coffee served in a tiny cup.
People often volunteer to do things for you, but they are not always sincere. They want to help, but they will more often tell you they will do something and not do it. This is their way to "save face" and let you know they care. Same with getting directions. People will always give you directions in the most friendly way. They are not always correct, but you will always get an answer.
Household things should always be covered. Tables should have glass tops, chairs and sofas, covered. We have even heard of large "cozies" for washing machines and refrigerators, and one friend covers all of their books up with plastic. Items like this are to be protected and preserved.
When a teacher does not come to class, there is no sub, there is just free time.
When you are late to class, you get locked out.
Colombians like to applaud, for all things celebratory, or just all things in general.
An introduction does not just mean your name, but a short speech about yourself and your opinions/thoughts about the day.
You also give a short speech/explanation to the group when you leave.
Getting wet and dirty is not OK.
When Colombians want to write a word and signify it for both genders, they use the @ sign. For example, "herman@s" or "bienvenid@s."
It is NOT difficult to get a discussion going in class. In fact, you are more likely to run over time on discussion.
When someone is praying out loud in a group, it is common for others in the group to whisper their own prayers/words during the prayer.
Ice cream trucks look like this. Andy wants to go home and build one to sell ice cream all over Newton in the summer.
Posted by Jennifer Chappell Deckert at 8:27 PM