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The contents of this website are mine personally and do not reflect any position of the U.S. government or the Peace Corps.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

A True Love Story

Finally fed up with sitting inside the library, I pack up my things and settle down at a table outside the cafeteria. I've been enjoying the fresh air for about 10 minutes when the downpour starts. Students and teachers alike start running for the doors, but goddamnit, I just got out here! So I scoot my things to the other side of the table, under the protection of the umbrella, and obstinately continue to read my article.
After about 5 minutes, the entire outside patio has cleared. Except for one boy. We make eye contact with each other and smile, glad to find a kindred spirit who's not afraid of a little rain. I got back to my article.
Another 5 minutes later and I've decided it's a good time for a cigarette. The rain still hasn't let up, so I take the time to admire the trees and the sky and.. Oh wait, the boy over there is smoking a cigarette, too. We smile at each other again, and just like that, I think I've experienced the most profound love affair of my life.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Grindhouse

Have you watched the credits to Planet Terror? Seriously, have you?

Mr. Rodriguez's cook: Robert Rodriguez

And there's no way that's just a coincidence, because I once watched a cooking video starring Robert Rodriguez, talking about a sandwich he really likes to make. But why did he have to put himself in the credits as his own cook?

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Still Alive, Part 2

Have you been following the news coming out of Mexico? If you haven't, don't worry. I didn't expect you to. My parents didn't know either. But it's important for you to know.

During the Mexican Independence celebration in Morelia, an unknown man lobbed a grenade into the crowd. It landed about 30 feet from where I was standing, drinking beers and dancing with a group of students and strangers.

I'm fine, but there are hundreds of people who aren't. Eight dead, over a hundred injured, and every one of their friends and family members in mourning. Not to mention the others in the crowd who made it out okay physically, but emotionally scarred.

I've been handling it pretty well, but when I've been sitting quietly alone in my thoughts for a while, invariably they turn to Monday night. I'll never be able to forget the blast of hot air that swept past us, and I've already noticed that firecrackers and other loud noises make me wince.

Mexican Independence here is a big deal, bigger than the 4th of July. Everybody is asking everybody else what they did over the weekend, and it's painful to see the way their faces crumble and the enthusiasm leaks out of them when I say I was in Morelia.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Still Alive!

But barely. Tuesday last week I came down with either malaria or yellow fever or West Nile Virus or AIDS or a very bad cold. I holed up in my bed, moved as little as possible, switched back and forth between hot and cold flashes, and ate no more than the equivalent of a small piece of bread each day. By Friday I was ready to climb out of bed, only to come down with actual cold symptoms (runny nose, etc.), intense digestive problems, and stomach cramps.

Sounds fun, right??

Yesterday I ate an entire tortilla with cheese and special sauce, plus a bottle of Coke and a several apples. Oh god, guys, seriously. It felt like a feast meant for a king.

So of course, tempting fate as always, I headed out early this morning with some other girls here for our kickboxing class. We're trying to figure out an exact schedule for our workout classes, and it doesn't help that sometimes they're cancelled with no explanation. Like today. So instead we went to the upper floor of the gym and joined the spinning class, and I think I spent more time watching the puddle of sweat grow under my bike than watching the teacher.

After, out of curiosity, I weighed myself on a scale and used the kilo-pound converter on Johanna's phone. Guess what! Whether it's entirely from my near-death illness or not, I've lost at least 15 lbs here!

I feel wonderful, but I think I need another nap.