Takeaways From Mexican Culture

I took the Mexican buses today alone to and from school! It went smoothly and I got to school with a ½ hour to spare.

Here’s my school, the Universidad Autónoma de Querétaro (UAQ).

Class went well. My cultural seminar teacher brought us cookies today. I really love that class. Today, we learned about currency. For example, the people on the currency on US money are all people from the past…we focus more on the founding fathers and the beginning of our liberty. However, on Mexican currency, the people represent various stages of the progress of Mexico throughout many many years.

Also, my teacher is friends with the current president – Caldéron! She said they were neighbors growing up and they always played as kids. Lulu (mi profesora) said it was funny because Caldéron would always say that he was going to be president – even when he was very young. They would always say: “Yeah yeah, ok, whatever..!” but look – he’s now the president of Mexico!

After class I went to the library to type up a paper. Felt good to have that out of the way!

Today is my host Mom’s b-day. She said that her friends are giving her three different parties. None of them are at our house, but they are throughout the day. I got her a Greek cookbook. I will have to give it to her tomorrow, but I’m sure she will like it because she loves to cook! Today for lunch we had cooked bananas, rice with carrots and peas, sautéed mushrooms with green beans and chicken, salad, flan, jello, and apple pie. So much food.

Nacho is having the best time testing me on learning the names of body parts. Forehead, elbows, knees, eyelids, ribs…you name it and I am learning it. haha I never learned the names of body parts, so I guess now is the time to learn!

At 4:30 Sam came over and we took off to Gabi’s school. The weather was nice and sunny when we left. About five minutes into our walk, the skies turned grey, it began to pour, and the street began to flood (and of course we didn’t bring umbrellas). We ran to the closest covering but it was took late. We were soaked. The thunder and lightening and flooding was ridiculous…it hasn’t stopped raining! While we were taking refuge under a tree this interesting man came over with a ½ eaten cob of corn covered in some sort of red hot sauce and a rose in the other mad and kept trying to shake our hands and talk to us. It was quite irritating, but funny to look back on now. We just said, “no necesitamos, estamos bien” but he wouldn’t leave. SO, we ran across the (flooded) street and continued on to Gabi’s school.

HERE I AM COMPLETELY SOAKED. The sad thing is, this picture hardly does the rain any justice.

Here is a video of the ridiculous rain:

We had to go to Gabi’s school to speak to some professors from the education department from U of O regarding our experience thus far in Querétaro. Four of my group members and myself met them in a room where we were fed tamales (spicy and sweet!) and just talked for an hour or so. These professors were given a grant to study the Mexican school system so that they can better understand and create a more efficient curriculum in the Oregon school systems. It was neat to talk to the professors and a good chance to express our experiences and feelings regarding the subjects of education, culture, Mexicans, schooling, etc. in a more intimate setting.

Sam, Ali, Sheri, and I stopped for coffee before we left to go home. By the time I got home, Sam and I were completely drenched and dirty from the massive puddles in the streets. However, it was awesome and I will never forget this experience (even though I’m not a fan of the whole drowned rat look).

In random news:

We are organizing a mini-excursion to Wal Mart on Friday which I am quite excited for.

Nacho and Maruca invited Sam over for comida tomorrow for a mini b-day celebration

Mexicans do not have b-day cakes like we have in the states. They also do not eat ice cream with cake – they have jello!

I tried flan for the first time today.

I will try to add pictures to my blogs as soon as I can. It is difficult because the internet is pretty sketchy, but I will add more pictures as soon as I can!!!

I am still trying to figure out the Mexican transportation system. I am attempting to understand why they bother painting lines on the roads to divide the lanes, as no one follows the designated lanes. Also, why are there not more accidents? As terrible as I think Mexican drivers are – they sure are talented as I have yet to see an accident yet, even though they drive like maniacs! AND, is it a game to try and hit pedestrians? Just the American ones? Who knows…

Anyway, I’m sure there’s more, but I’m tired and have an early start tomorrow!!

Hasta luego!

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