Today began at 9:30 and then around 11:30am it ended before beginning again at 3:30pm. That’s correct; I slept almost all morning, a luxury I have not enjoyed since toddler-hood. I made good use of my time for the two hours I was awake in the morning: breakfast, reading, chores around the house, second breakfast. And then I laid down on my futon couch and fell asleep, waking intermittently to make sure I wasn’t drooling on the ornamental cushion that had become my pillow. I guess I was catching up on my sleep for the year.
At 3:30 (which is also conveniently the time I need to leave in order to get into town before class) I awoke, splashed some water on my face, brushed my teeth and hopped on my bicycle and biked down the dusty and unforgivably pot hole-y streets of Todos Santos. I have no shocks on my bike (they aren’t broken– I actually have none) so biking is a very tactile experience. However, I am now at the point where I can weave down a street, almost automatically avoiding all the major dips, holes and pieces of protruding rebar and pipe. I also haven’t been barked at in a while which is a plus.
Today I worked with the pre-teens (I was secretly thrilled when Elizabeth, the hotel manager from the Yucatan, happily took the little tykes– 5 little girls who of course happened to all be the best of friends.) From past experience I have learned that a great command of Spanish is required in the youngest class because you spend a great deal of time coaxing them to stop throwing things at each other and the like. My authority in that class stretches as far as my Spanish does in that sort of situation: “Sientate, por fa’ (Sit down please)”, ” Listo ahora? Escuchame” (Ready now? Listen to me). Fun Fact: Todos Santos Spanish is unique in that they clip the ends of their words off and speak very quickly (makes comprehension difficult) A common example is in “por favor” meaning please. You’d shorten it to, “Por fa'”.
Anyway, I got the pre-teens in the first class and the teens in the second. Both classes were productive. The only blip was in the teen class when I looked over onto Alex’s paper and saw the phrase, “I like beer” smeared garishly in the upper left hand corner.
“Te gusta cerveza, eh?” (You like beer, huh?) I asked. Alex laughed and pointed at the other boy at the table, meaning (he hoped) I’d gather that the other guy had written it on his paper. “No hasta viente-uno, verdad?” (Not until 21, right?) I said. They thought this was hilarious and both proceeded to roll through the names of all the alcoholic beverages they could think of, asking me if I liked them: No. No. No. No. No…..
We moved off of alcoholic beverages onto surfing and other beach activities. They asked me something and then looked at each other peevishly.
“Qué?” (What?) I asked. Again the giggled and between spurts of laughter I gathered that they were asking me if I liked wet T-shirt contests. I pretended I didn’t understand and just said, “No comprendo!” (I don’t understand) because I’m sure nothing productive could have come from continuing the conversation one way or the other. I secretly thought it was hilarious and knew my Spanish must be improving if I could understand all that. This had also confirmed I indeed was not teaching the nine and unders that afternoon.
On my way home I realized I wouldn’t be able to attend akido at 7 since riding home in the dark by bike didn’t sound to hot. Street lamps are sparse and there is only one stop light between Todos Santos and La Paz and hour and a half away. I have the honor of stopping at it almost everyday on my bike as I turn onto Colegio Militar, one of the main streets in Todos Santos. So I back tracked and stopped by La Arca, the building where the classes were to be held, and wrote a note explaining the situation to Carolyn and slipped it under the locked door.
The inspiration hit me that tacos from El Pastorsito were exactly what I wanted for dinner. So I stopped by the raging-orange open air building on the street corner and ordered three tacos del pastor “para llevar” (to go). A mere 40 pesos! Which is about the equivalent of 2 1/2 US dollars. I brought them home and began eating them outside on my patio before I was thronged by two dogs and a cat– each sniffing my dinner with gusto. Yeah, they’re just that good. I had to eat them in my house at the table in order to enjoy them in peace. I wish with all my heart that with every blog viewing, each of you readers would be awarded one taco del pastor from El Pastorsito. My Lord, I love them so.
This evening I hunkered down and wrote a three page essay for my spiritual exploration class. Victory! And sent it off to Colorado. My essay was addressing the effect of reading the book, “Fingerprints of God” by Barbara Bradley Hagerty, on my own thoughts and spiritual life. Her book is a look at the science of spirituality, tackling the main question of, “Is there one?” A provable science, that is. Fascinating book, highly recommend it (esp. if you’re a Christian Scientist and I know may of you readers are! since Hagerty begins the book as one and puts her faith to the test until the last page…)
And, as I was writing this blog, the midnight munchies over took me and I decided to have a bowl of cereal (a nation wide nighttime favorite). But my milk had gone bad. Hmmm. How to improvise…..
Necessity really is the mother of invention, I thought to myself as I poured out a bowl of cereal, spooned in plain yogurt and sloshed some orange juice over the mess. Delicious.
Buen’ noches todos (Or just “Buenas” if you really wanna get abbreviated TS style)