i really can't seem to find the time to write everything exciting that happens to me and still find the time to experience the new and the different. like the other night when we were invited to the 19 year old birthday party of my guatemalan sister which just happened friday.
it was so very cool. so very exciting. so very unexpected. the day before as our mom got more comfortable with us (and my ability to understand what she was saying to us grew) she mentioned in hush tones that friday was glorias birthday and that there was going to be a surprise party and we were invited! having been to many birthday parties before as well as many parties i knew one thing, i like to party but what was this party going to be like? only time would tell. before we knew it the day was upon us and there was a mass of activity in the kitchen and about the house. cleaning, cooking and just generally busying about so much i took the opportunity to head out into town to my favourite coffee spot to do some homework (and maybe even a blog). with strict instructions however to return before 6 for the surprise.
in the house at the time were 4 students: myself, lena (german), else (norwegian) and pia (norwegian). all of our spanish was pretty weak so what to expect no one know but one thing we knew was that we didn't want to go to a party empty handed. but how much to you spend and what do you buy when some much for sale from the artist vendors is actually part of their daily wear or alternatively the tiendas (shops) that the locals frequent is essentially filled plastic crap. deciding that arriving with a regala (gift) too genorous could be considered ruder than bringing nothing at all (in weaker economic situations that is). in the end i purchased a smallish painting in the traditional mayan style for gloria's wall to remind her beautiful home while off in guatemala city studying to be a doctor. lena gifted her rain jacket, which was of a quality unattainable in a country like guatemala and the girls, pia and else bought a beautiful little purse and put even prettier ear rings in it. i wish it wasn't the case but as it turned out we were the only people who brought gifts whereas everyone else brought great cheer and fun.
in all at the first sitting there were 16 of us around the table and then for the second there seemed to be more but by then the space was teaming with children, parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, lions and tigers and bears, oh my! for food there were 5 roasted chickens, bowls of potatoes and of veggies and few things i didn't recognize but certainly enjoyed. the festivities went on for quite awhile and the family was excited for me to bring out my photo gear to take a large family picture (in truth i think it was more my pleasure than theirs as i was able to bring my camera out and shoot to my hearts content in a country where many a man and woman will not agree to have their photos taken) beyond that it may also be your pleasure as in my opinion the photos are great!
must go study for class....a bit to share on that front but not at the expense of my studies so i shall save my latest activities for a future post. ciao.