10.09.2015 70 °F
It's been over a week since I have gotten to Lima! It went SO fast and taught me that while 10 months may seem like an incredible amount of time, it really isn't! These 10 months of my life will fly by and eventually I'll be on a plane back to Columbus to go back to being mediocre (lol).
This past Sunday, the Lima exchange students had a little get together at our exchange president's house. It was fun and we were all asked to bring a dish to share with everyone else. There was a lot of Spaghetti and I, as an exchange student/carb lover, will never complain about the amount of spaghetti available to me.
I guess there was a memo to wear comfortable shoes/walking shoes/MOUNTAIN CLIMBING SHOES?????????????????? (Please take the hint that I didn't know we were going to climb a mountain that day and I chose to wear UGGS TO THE PARTY !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I walked miles to the base of the mountain with the rest of the group (In Uggs) and thought I would lose a lung (while wearing Uggs), and proceeded to climb up the steep roads on a hot day (in Uggs), and climbed the rocky mountainy-dirt surface (in Uggs) and did it all again when we went back down (in Uggs). So, if you ever feel unprepared, think of me when I wore Uggs climbing a mountain and nearly slipped and fell to my death 99 and 1/2 times.
I will definitely be more prepared for Macchu Picchu in October.
There are pictures in this post about my adventures that day. It was a fun day once I got to the top, but I looked and felt like an idiot and it was so much easier going back down.
The group of people that I was in got lost on the way back home and I stopped and bought a churro with caramel filling (<33333) and asked for directions and got the group back home and I am proud of my exchange student skills.
Something I notice is that I really don't eat that much, and when I do, it's usually rice. I have coffee for dinner and usually don't eat anything in the morning. For lunch, it's something amazing that my host mom makes me, but there isn't that much eating and there is definitely a lot of walking. I walk 20 minutes (exactly) to school everyday, so there and back is 40 minutes. Sometimes I go on a walk with my host mom after school in the afternoon. She said we need to train for the walking required for Macchu Picchu. I don't argue with her. It's going to be difficult, because in the US I am not used to being this active, but I like getting off my butt and doing something for once. Plus, there's so much I have yet to see just in the proximity of my house, not including the districts around where I live, so there's always something to see and do and enjoy. Plus, my host mom told me that once I get used to the area and can find my way around the city better, I will be able to go out more with my friends. She also said there is a shortcut to my school that I have yet to find.
I had my third day of school today. Nothing major has happened since Friday when I last posted except today it finally dawned on me that I am not a good artist. We were in art class and I had to draw a vase with a pentagonal prism and a mini-pumpkin in 3D. That was difficult and finished that and drew an abstract of flowers and vines and a butterfly and I drew that really well.
I also learned that I am VERY good with directions, especially when they're given to me in another language? I walk the 15-20 minute route to school by myself to and from school everyday. I did the route with my host mom once which was on the morning on my way to school on Friday. Because of some miscommunication between my host mother and I, I ended up walking home (halfway) and she was on her way to get me. Yesterday, I walked the whole way back and forth by myself and today, the same.
The walk really isn't that difficult and I have picked up on the behaviors of the people that I normally see and of the drivers. I know what streets are dangerous and which streets are safe or safer. I allow myself enough time to find new and quicker routes to school and still get there promptly.
I was tardy to school today because I fell asleep getting ready this morning. I was putting on my makeup and fell asleep somehow and slept for 20 minutes until my host mom came and found me and I had to rush and finish getting ready (and still looked like crap when I left the house).
I had to stop and by Tuna (the fruit not the fish) for Spanish class. We tried all kinds of Peruvian fruits in Spanish today and some I have had before (Strawberries, Kiwi), but I tried two types of passion fruit, but there was one that I tried that I preferred to the other. I am having a hard time remembering the name of the good one.
School seemed like it dragged on forever and ever today. I start school at 7:30 and end around 3:45 (Monday-Thursday). On Friday I get out at 3:05 which is super nice.
I have Rotary again tomorrow and I am hoping that I will get my stipend.
UPDATE: I stopped writing this on Tuesday, and it is now going on Friday. I have a tendency to start a blog post and then finish it days later.
Wednesday night's Rotary was pretty slow. Nothing special happened. A couple of the exchange students at my club presented and so did some of the Rotexs. I can't wait to present to my club back home about my exchange and talk about my experiences. I was inspired by the rebounds to try and experience as much as possible during my exchange and really soak it all in. These kids had great exchanges and I would like to make the same impact on someone else.
I will not be receiving my stipend until the end of the month.
I just finished my homework for school. My best exchange friend, Karolin, and I are working on a human trafficking project for World History. School is fun when I understand what's going on. A lot of the time I do understand what's going on, but the material that they cover has a level of difficulty that's out of this world.
On Wednesday afternoon, Karolin came over after school and I learned Surquillo a little bit more. I wanted to take Karolin to Las Tinajas which is a restaurant about 2 blocks from my house. It's amazing and really inexpensive. I could remember the things around Las Tinajas but couldn't remember it's location because I had gone there by taxi with my host mom. I eventually found it and converted some money at the same time and I am learning my way around the city better. We ate pollo a la bars (which is the best at Las Tinajas) and went home to work on our project. We work well together because our strengths mesh. (Or maybe its because we have exchange student witch-y powers)
(Probably the latter)
On Saturday I will be going to Mistura with some of the other exchange students. My host mom told me I needed to experience that and I want to go! Everyone talks so highly about the annual Peruvian event and I do NOT want to miss out. I will post pictures and write about the foods I taste on Sunday during my free-time.
Exchange student life is the best. I just wish I was offered as many cool experiences when I get back from exchange.
Until after Mistura!
PS (above there are pictures of my school and the views I have from my school and other pictures I wanted to share)
PPS (In the flag picture, that is the Ohio flag, but everyone thought it was Puerto Rico [Google the PR flag and compare])