Where to start, probably with the obvious. Language, holy cow is this complicated! I am actually quite surprised with my own progress. Even with in the five days that I have lived here, communicating is getting easier. At least with Abuelita. I'm learning how much people use body language to describe what they are saying, and thank goodness they do. It makes understanding a lot easier. That and being completely exposed 24/7 is making learning this language must easier. My problem is having confidence to use the knowledge I am gaining. It is coming too, even Abuelita told me that my spanish is improving very much.
I live with the most beautiful woman. She's very sweet, caring and helpful. She's also teaching me so much about Costa Rican culture even without meaning to. I feel very spoiled here, she cooks, cleans and does all my laundry for me. Very crazy to me. When talking to Sasha's (a new friend of mine) Tico momma she told us that older people still consider that to be the way things should happen in a house hold. It is taking some getting used to but I can't say I don't like it. Its very helpful to not have to worry about that kind of stuff while trying to learn a new way of life.
My spanish classes are going to be very challenging as I attempt to learn this complicated language. My teacher seems very helpful and I enjoy her very much. My dance and cooking classes are quickly becoming my favorites however. As I guessed before. In dance we are learning 4 different dances that are pretty difficult. Even with my dancing background it is like starting from ground zero! It's going to be very fun though.
We had our first cooking class yesterday and learned to make empanadas. So good! The ones we made were made to go with beer or wine, to have when you have over company to chat and hang out. Even my Abuela said they were good when I brought some to her. We recieved official USAC aprons and at the end of the semester we will get a cook book of all our recipes so I can cook for my friends and family back home! Yay!
All of these things make up such an amazing culture here in Costa Rica. So rich with traditions. I very much appreciate their strong sense of culture, at least in the older generations. I find it sad that the country is being influenced by that of the "American" culture. Because in my opinion we don't have nearly as strong of a culture as they do. As you will see in my pictures they have streets full of only American fast food places, and stores everywhere are with American brands. They even have walmart.
I should probably mention that I have met some amazing people here already. I'm quickly realizing that these people were brought into my life for a reason, each to teach me something about this life. If this trip teaches me nothing else it will be that I am a very blessed person and that being humble is a very good quality. I'm sure I will mention my new friends all the time, as they will be the ones who share in this experience with me.
Go look at my pictures, most speak for themselves! Chao!