WOW ! I can’t believe I have been here for over a month !! <—Cliche yet surprisingly very true.
These past two weeks I have had to opportunity to travel to Colon (a part of Montevideo) on Tuesdays and see a bit of the ministry that is taking place there with the church. The area of the Colon is much different than the other parts of Montevideo I have seen, and I have been enjoying it immensely.
There is a children’s program in Colon, and yesterday I was standing outside and a few of the children ran up to me and starting poking my pants and pulling on my jacket and asking if I spoke English, it was absolutely adorable. I was able to converse with them in Spanish a bit, since they were no older than 4 and our vocabulary is on a similar level.
As I was leaving it really struck me as to why the children asking me if I spoke English stuck out to me. In the month’s time I have been here in Uruguay, every person I have met on the street or in the stores or elsewhere have instantly started speaking Spanish to me, and continue after I just stand there not saying anything, and I must tell them I do not speak a lot of Spanish before I am pegged as a foreigner. These children did not know anything about me, but could tell I was different. It always amazes me how children can pick up on things that adults sometimes cannot but it amazes me even more how open and loving children are to these differences.
One little girl even stood on her tippy toes and pulled down to give me besos on my cheek, and it simply melted my heart.
Last week a family from the church took me to Prado, another area of Montevideo. We adventured through the Botanical Gardens and the Japanese Gardens (because we all know I love trees and flowers), as well as going to the Museo de la Memoria. Museo de la Memoria is a memorial museum about the dictatorship that took place here in Uruguay during the 70’s & 80’s. I learned an abundance about the recent history of Uruguay, and definitely shed some light on the culture as well.
There are a few things I am still working on here, one of them is my Spanish. One things I am having quite a difficult time with with “sentarse” and “sentirse” which translate into “to sit” and “to feel”. When someone is speaking rapidly to me and I miss the context of the word, I can not for the life of me figure out if they are telling me to sit down, or to talk about my feelings, which are two VERY different things.
Another things I have to work on is the whole Celsius & Fahrenheit things. One day last week I went for my normal run in my tee-shirt and running capris. I was only running 3 miles but I was struggling hardcore, and I don’t usually struggle THAT much to just run 3 miles. After a mile and a half I had to walk, I just couldn’t do it, and I finished the three miles by run/walking the second half and feeling miserable. I was angry with myself for not being able to finish strong. On my way back to the flat I looked at the weather and it said 36 degrees Celsius, which meant absolutely nothing to me. When I returned to the flat I looked it up in Fahrenheit…90 degrees. Oops. I wasn’t do upset with my struggle anymore. IT WAS SO HOT AND HUMID AND I WAS WEARING PANTS. I was sweating so much that when I went to stand up from stretching, I literally skidded across my floor because I slipped in my own sweat. THAT IS MY LIFE.
Yesterday I moved into the house I will be staying at for a while, it was an easy move seeing as I only have two bags and my backpack. When I walked up to the house my huge smile spread across my face because the house number is 143. (For those of you who may not understand, I grew up with 143 meaning “I love you”, and it is something that has stuck with me throughout the years, hence 143 Kirst at the end of my posts and 1:43 being my favorite time of day/night).