Thursday, August 13, 2009

Life.Family.Sore thumbs...sticking out REALLY far.

Thought for the day: Now that I am somewhat accustomed to life in Sucre, I have come to realize something. Everything is exactly the same as in the states, but in a different language. Life is universal. Truly. Especially in school. All good students cram to the front of class. All good students are in favor with their teachers. All senior guys all are obnoxious jokers. Here, the guys make this loud, guttural moo which I find priceless. All students, good and bad, work together to take advantage of their teachers. All students cheat on physics tests. All students try and get away with things when the teacher isn´t looking. So, though I might not understand everything by mouth, I can still laugh and get the gist of what is going on around me.

My first few days here have been interesting. To say the least. Thanks to the altitude, I have been very sick. Waking up in the middle of the night to puke alone in a foreign home isn´t exactly my idea of fun, but I guess it´s what I signed up for. Mom isn´t there anymore to hold my hair, bring me blankets, and stay awake with me, but it´s a good thing. I have come to love tea, otherwise known as maté, because it is great for my upset stomach. Also, staying up until 3:30 A.M. to go to parties on my FIRST night probably didn't help my health[insert sarcasm here], but I could be wrong. Either way, I am feeling much better now.

Family: I learned quickly that my family's name is of high standing in Sucre. My father, Jorge Rodriguez, shares the ownership of their ancient, family mansion with the rest of his siblings...and golly-gee-willicker are there MANY siblings. This home is located in the center of the city, and contains many ancient relics and family heirlooms. Furthermore, the sister of Jorge's great-grandfather was La Princesa of the Castle of the Glorieta, another famous location in Sucre. Their bloodlines go back to Bolivia's birth. Family is incredibly important here. We dine with all the family every Sunday for lunch. I am still trying to remember the names of all my aunts and uncles, but it is getting easier. They treat me incredibly well. In our home, we have a maid that does laundry and cooks breakfast and everything. I much prefer to clean my OWN underwear, personally; and I am sure the maid feels the same way. I guess I can't complain.

Blond hair: I can't walk anywhere alone in the city's center. I might as well just paint a bullseye on my face, advertise my presence, and tell people to stare at me. It would have the exact same effect as my blonde hair. This morning: Peaceful and alone, I scope out the best park bench. Part in the sun, part in the shade. At the plaza's center, shrouded by trees. A gentle, brisque breeze plucking ripe leaves to float and dance to the ground. Adjacent to a happy little fountain. Alone in peace to read as the fat, bilious pigeons prance around my feet. BAM!!!! All within fifteen minutes, I swear at least 5 young boys had begged to shine my shoes. Everywhere, people sit amongst the dog-piss-stained streets begging for money. What am I to do? I offer a few coins every day, but I can't have my shoes shined 5 times! These children are young, desperate, and relentless. It makes for a very difficult situation when they plop down beside me and want to have a discussion, but only so I will warm up to them and hand out my wallet. When in Rome, do as the Romans do...I watch my family closely. Sometimes Jorge offers coins, and sometimes he just acts completely oblivious. He isn't mean, that is just how it works here. I will give it a whirl next time I am approached. How sad.
1) Majo and Jorgito, my siblings. We are in our school uniforms. I kind of like the uniforms, but we have to wear really hideous skirts every Monday. Ick. I will blog about school in the near future.
2) Jorgito and Abu(short for 'grandma' in spanish). Abu is an absolute angel, and she reminds me of my Nana far too much. She spoils me and Jorgito terribly. Jorgito is absolutely adorable. "We all need somebody to love." How true. My love for this new younger brother is a completely different love than I have for Spencer. I always watch out for him. Jorgito and I have bonded magnificently. I adore him in the strangest way. It feels good to care for someone.
3) My first 'futbol' game! Sucre is red....we sucked. Jorge is a civil engineer. He built the stadium, along with various other important structures in Sucre. I love kickin' it with the boys. Every monday, we go to play walleyball with another family. The mothers remain at home. I am kind of a tomboy here.
Ciao!(Shani, Shani, Shani);-)


  1. Oh my dearest Hayley, how I miss you!!!! It looks like you're fitting in blonde hair and all which we all knew you would. I'm glad you have a kick ass family!!!! We miss you! Get me some phone numbers ;)
    Emily Elizabeth!

  2. Okay, here goes. Hope this works.