First off, the food is still delicious, it still thunders, rains, and lightnings (I have yet to figure out if that is the correct use of that word) every day, and the mosquito bites are still coming.
Now, onto some activities. We went zip lining at the zoo on Sunday. And by zoo I mean some sort of private collection of animals owned by the owner (that could get confusing) of TACA airlines. We paid the $30 fee for Salvadoran residents instead of the $55 foreigner fee (thanks to our student ID cards) for the EXTREME zip line course with 14 lines. We hiked to the lines, zipped, zapped, and zoomed across the jungle, past waterfalls, and next to flying eagles. Highlight of the day? The line that was 180 meters above the jungle.
So for a quick math recap:
1m= 3.3 ft
180mx3.3 = 594ft
I have never felt more like a bird in my entire life.
Then came the first day of praxis. Normally I will go with a partner but my partner had recently contracted some sort of illness so I went solo my first day.
It was quite the experience.
I rode in the van an hour outside of Cuscatlan to Tepecoyo with 2 other students going to a praxis site nearby. The 3 of us were given a short orientation by my site leader Angelica (one of the most amazing women ever) and then we went our separate ways.
I felt anxiety immediately.
This was the first time I have been completely immersed in Spanish with no fellow English speaker around me. It was 8:45AM and I would be leaving around 3:30PM. I didn’t have too much of a problem understanding but as soon as I opened my mouth my brain managed to forget all verb tenses (and just verbs in general). Then I figured out that we would be cooking for the first half of the day.
Yes, I thought to myself, I can do this.
And then we made soy milk from scratch.
And then I made tortillas (after 4 you could barely tell the difference between mine and Angelica’s…barely).
Cooking seemed to provide an excellent common ground for the time being. However, my very large spanish dictionary still made a lot of appearances as well as the phrase “Un momento,” followed by frantic page flipping. The young students came to the house for lunch, school only lasts half the day here and many students lack proper funds to pay for their own lunch so Angelica makes a nutritious lunch for them to keep them alert.
Then the cooking time was over and I began to get nervous about my Spanish again. But wait, what did I hear? Beauty and the Beast. Yes, the music I heard was a small girl around 6 watching Beauty and the Beast in Spanish.
Well hello there new best friend.
Bianca and I shared a love for disney and even completed a puzzle of the princesses together (after many interjections from me that pounding the incorrect pieces together does not make them correct). At this moment I could not be more thankful for my praxis site placement and I can’t wait for the weeks to come and the multitude of lessons to be learned from Angelica and the others in the community.