Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Hello All,

Since Gerie (or should I say Geraldina) and Chad are busy with their instructors, it's my turn to dish. It's Day 2 and with the rate we're going we can't help but learn something. We're at it with our individual instructors all day long. We start at 8am and go until 10:30, take a 30 minute break and work until noon. Take a 2-hr lunch, yes 2 hours, and then work again until 5pm with a 15-minute break sometime in the afternoon. We then get to speak Spanish with everyone we come in contact with: shopkeepers, restaurant folks, the family whose B&B we're staying at, and yes, the hawkers who follow us and try and sell us things at every waking moment. I already made the mistake yesterday of telling a woman my name. She found me later on a different street, used my name and reminded me that she'd wait for me. What was I thinking? Have I never been anywhere before? Do I live in a cave? Could be worse I suppose, she's nice about it and already started using a nickname. Just in case you're wondering Panchita is a popular nickname for Frances and Frank. About our B&B: not exactly swank but nice, clean, and they cook for us. The woman who cooks our meals, hangs out and chats with us in Spanish while we eat. There is a nice rooftop deck where we should be able to see at least two of the three surrounding volcanos--haven't yet though. There is also a bird (parrot, macaw) in the main courtyard who whistles and says hola. Chad is planning on teaching it Frere Jacques--should be pretty annoying when that happens. Food here is decent, there's the touristy spots and the more down-to-earth places. I do believe most are tourist spots since this is a big tourist destination. There are a lot of Spanish language schools and a lotof foreign tourists walking around. We are gearing up for Independance Day on Friday, September 15th. The year was 1821 and the country Spain, if you're wondering. There is a tradition of running with torches the day before Independance Day and we will be doing so with the school. I haven't quite figured out the significance of the "running with the torches" but I'll try and get the scoop. Fill you in on that later. But between the running with torches on Thursday and the trip to the active volcano on Friday we'll be living on the edge this week. Can't wait to see what they've got planned for next week ;-) One has to wonder how these folks keep return customers. Still haven't realized my dream of 24/7 with Gerie (I mean Geraldina) yet but I'm still working on it. I'm planning on trying to move into her room, especially since she has a nicer one than I have. (She'll pay for that once we're back at HCC). We just experienced an incredible downpour that lasted for quite awhile. I'm very happy that we were inside and not out on the streets. Speaking of which, they may be flooded--it was a lot of rain. Well, that's about it for now. We're still chugging along and enjoying ourselves. More posts to come. Cheers, Fran (Francisca, Panchita, whatever...)


At September 17, 2006 9:17 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sounds like fun Fran et.all. Donde es mas photographs? (or something like that). Buenos Dias. Adios. Aurora (Dawn E)


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