HI. i haven´t been blogging for a while in order to feel cooler. that was a joke.
i´m sitting in an internet cafe, two doors down from the building where i´ll be living for the next three months. i live in El Edificio Colon, on the 15th floor, with an older couple named Julieta and Fernando... the two of them enjoy laughing, going to church (including various religious meetings during the week that i don´t completely understand), skyping with their son´s family in Buenos Aires (which Julieta does almost every night), taking siestas in the afternoon, watching her fav telenovela at three (only Julieta), and eating (also mostly Julieta, Fernando has to watch his cholesterol or something.) one more note on the Julieta´s eating: she may be the only person i´ve met to rival Grandma Esther as the slowest-ever-eater-in-the-history-of-the-world.
Fernando leaves and i eat here, alone! she said. if only Fernando were as kind as Grandpa....
Julieta´s dedication to technology is pretty funny. she takes facebook, very, very seriously. for example, when she first signs on, she carefully reads the news feed, murmering aloud each event/status that she sees. the first day that i arrived, Julieta told me that it was one of her past volunteer´s birthday that day, and announced: i am going to write on her facebook wall today. but not now. after lunch.
did you already write on your volunteer´s facebook? i asked after lunch.
yes, yes, she told me. i wrote to her, feliz cumpleanos!
for some reason i had expected more.
Fernando and Julieta have three kids - Fabio, Gabriel and Pablo. Pablo used to be a chef but is taking a break to work for the city government. he learned to cook from his mother! Julieta told me. Pablo has a wife named Veronica and two daughters, Emma and Mariana. Emma (who(m?) Julieta & Fernando call Emmita, or little Emma), is four and, apparently, una habladora - a talker. i´m really excited to meet her. Mariana is only a month old, and her grandparents are insanely in love with her (duh). Gabriel lives with his wife Pamela and their son Fabio in Buenos Aires (they´re getting their masters, i think). Fabio is five and plays video games while he skypes with his grandma. J&F´s youngest son (good abbreviation, no?), also named Fabio, "left" a few years ago. Vive en el cielo - he lives in the sky.
Julieta told me she doesn´t like cooking.
a little bit? i asked her.
i like to eat, she told me.
but you like it a little, right? ¿un poquitito?
yes, of course, she told me. but not much.
i wanted Julieta to like cooking because for at least three hours a day, that´s all she does. she spends her mornings boiling potatoes, making sauces, cooking meat, and chopping vegetables for the salad. she cooks one enormous meal a day - lunch, and eats the leftovers for dinner (but that doesn´t directly translate into spanish - leftovers go in the trash, Julieta told me when i looked up the word). Fernando makes the juice. juice is very important, and Fernando makes it fresh every day while Julieta washes and gets dressed (also very slowly... Grandma?!)
of course, i´ve been doing more than just eating Julieta´s sopa and teaching Fernando the words awesome and super duper: most interestingly, i finally got a Bolivian cell phone, went to Rosh Hashanah services at a synogogue, became buddies with my Spanish teacher, bought a camera, hung out a bunch with the lovely SIT kids, and watched The Big Lebowski projected onto the outside wall of a Sustainable Bolivia house. the Rosh Hashanah experience especially deserves a post on its own... later, i think.
here´s a photo of the building where i´m living!
and here´s the fruit that Fernando used to make juice a few days ago... it´s called Maracuya. and we strained the seeds!