My blogs have been random! Potlickas and football...hahaha. But lots has happen in the past two weeks!
I have to give you the highlights of last Monday, because I had some especially interesting conversations and happenings...
I woke up and ate a nice fried chicken breakfast (yes, that;s an important detail). I headed to work excited because Samuel was going to take me around PG to meet major people and find potential places to rent.... Well, he never showed up for work..... fail! I left work in the early afternoon to head home.I hung out with the fam for awhile...Mrs Assi kept asking me if she could wake me up at 4am the next morning to help her with lunch. I kept telling her she could try, but chances are I would be dead asleep and not wake up....We repeated those lines to each other about 8 times.... Very deep conversation. lol. I really think she wanted to wake me up! But I wasn't having it.... I cherish my sleep on weekdays.... I still have to go to work! lol. After awhile I headed to Tonya's teacher's house, Mr Chun--he's the one who's mom was Matt's host mom in San Martin. I headed over to his house to visit because Na, as we call her, was in town. Na is tooooo cute! She is such a little old lady, (which I really found out she's only 50!) Mayan women seem to age like statues! The girls are all cute and then they grow up to look stoic. I guess hard lives = hard on the body. They all look solid! Anyway, I was shocked to learn this little old woman was younger than my own mom! She's got 14 children! And WHO KNOWS how many grandchildren! Dozens! But she is still such a cute, happy lady. She's always wearing her traditional Mayan dress with her hair clipped up...and she smiles a big gapped smile, because a lot of her teeth are missing from over the years... Still, I just love to talk to her! I found out that she is the oldest of 4 children and also the only girl--same as me!! She went on to practice some Mopan with me and then tell me various stories--some true, some way false. She did tell me a cool story about the "white Indian" who lives in the hidden ruins of Santa Elena. Basically, it's a ghost who you can see far in the jungle if you find the ruins. Maybe I'll visit Matt in his village and go see! haha
I got home and before even saying hi, Mrs Assi told me to come flatten tortillas in Q'echi---which I don't understand! She does this thing where she says phrases I know in Mopan in Q'echi instead and then laughs but never translates for me! Just laughs! So finally Cor told me what she was saying and I told her to give me a minute to put my bags down and that was the phrase she repeated for the rest of the night: "Ish Mally. Gimme minute!" oy vey! So while we were flattening tortillas, Mrs Assi shared lashing stories with me... Basically, the details of how she beat her children. Oh boy. She told me about her belt lashings they all got, (and apparently still do!). And how it's Maya tradition to lash so kids will behave.... because no other culture has a history of doing that before! Anyway, I told her how most Americans were the same way, but nowadays we have adopted new methods, realizing kids don't respond as well to beatings alone. I told her my parents' generation got more beatings than kids do now, things have progresssed, yada, yada, yada.... all of this using smaller vocab, of course. She really didn't care or understand, so she goes on to tell me about how Junior and Nester once found $5 on the ground and bought a bunch of candy with it when they were about 7 and 10 years old. They came back and Mr Assi made them strip down to their underwear and lay in a red ant hill for punishment!!!!!! That way they got bit all over.... Can you believe that???! I was completely shocked! I admitted to her that if a parent did that in the States and people found out, there would be big problems with the law about it....She didn't really understand, but just laughed at me. Oh man!
Finally, it was time to eat! Save me from the stories of lashings!!! I tried a cool little critter called "tut" in Mayan... it's a conch shell type food, but smaller. Then put it in a really nice waha leaf kaldo. It was nice nice.
I finally had some relaxation time after dinner. I played with Pachy and the whole family gathered around to watch tv. It was fine family time until Antoinette mentioned that her cousin was eying me last weekend at the party.... oh great. He asked who I was and what I was doing with them, and then apparently used the line: "do you have ketchup......because I wanna get a taste of her." Wow.... really boy? Since Ant tells this story IN FRONT OF Mrs Assi, Mrs Assi gets all excited and asks me a bunch of questions. She asked me if I'm gonna go to the next graduation party--which I had already said I would. Then she asked if I would dance ... again, I said yes. Then she asked if I would dance with the guy.... I tried to be diplomatic and said "I will dance with everybody!" hahahaha Then she told me that if I don't go he will be "vexed with me" What??!! Crazy lady! She got a kick out of asking questions like that for the rest of the night. I think I'm getting married into the family...... Oy!
Yay for integration!