04 February 2008

3 Months of Catchup

I'm finally sitting down to do the catchup (not to be confused with ketchup) I've been dreading. Thankfully my students are working well today and I have the time.

1. When I left off, I was headed to Bogota to visit another school and get some more math training. The visit was fantastic--the school, CNG, has a lot of really good things going on and the people were very fun to hang out with. It was nice to see students actually working and learning in math class. My travel buddy and I had a chance to tour around the city one day. We went to an area of town called La Candelaria, which is historic, with Simon Bolivar Plaza and the Hall of Justice. We also took a tram up to the top of a mountain (whose name escapes me) to see the Monserrate cathedral. The view was amazing!

2. Thanksgiving weekend I went with some friends to the coastal town of Santa Marta--near Cartagena on the Caribbean. The resort was awesome; we could sit in the sun all day on the beach, and go back to our air-conditioned bliss room. Yay! The weekend was very relaxing and a lot of fun. Be on the lookout for a photo link in an email soon.

3. December brought a long awaited Christmas vacation trip home. I did get a chance to spend a few days in Denver, where I saw The Nutcracker for the first time ever with Brian, enjoyed a fantastic Saturday breakfast at Lucille's, caught some local live music--check out the band Paper Bird at http://www.myspace.com/paperthebird--, went to church, drank some great coffee, and got to see most of the people I'd hoped to (if I missed you, I'll catch you next time).

4. I spent the rest of my vacation with the family in Wyoming. Jason, Christy and I got to see Jerry Joseph play in Jackson which was completely awesome. Jason surprised us with massages at the hotel the next morning, which was almost better. At the show I ran into some of my students from student teaching, which was fun but a little weird. When I asked them if they remembered me, I pointed out that I was considerably younger then, as well as something about being considerably less drunk.

5. We spent Christmas with all of the cousins and kids in Eden, which was as nice as it always is (even with a little different Christmas tree). It was so much fun to watch the kids playing on Christmas day.

6. The crew all came over to mom and dad's to help me celebrate my 30th anniversary with pizza and cake. Lindsay and beautiful Becca came, too, so I got my baby fix. :) Have I ever mentioned that other people's kids are great??

7. Had a relaxing rest of the vacation, until I started to come back here. Dad and I nearly didn't get of Kemmerer to go to SLC the day before my flight due to the snow. We did make it, but it was crappy. The next morning at 4:30 he dropped me off at the airport and we said our goodbyes. About 30 minutes later, I found out that Continental has a luggage embargo to Latin America around Christmas time. I was allowed to travel with 2 bags, 50 lbs each, absolutely no excess (no matter how much I wanted to pay). Mind you, I had 4 bags with around 215 total lbs of luggage. Fantastic. I called dad and told him he needed to come back to the airport to, at the very least, pick up the stuff I wasn't going to be bringing. I proceeded over to the wall with my bags and started shuffling stuff. I had stuff everywhere. I was that girl in the airport. Dad showed up, shook his head, and dove in to help. Needless to say, there was no way I was going to make it on the plane that day. Case in point: We got one bag all organized, weighed it, and found it was 64 lbs. So we went back to the shuffling, thought we had it, took it to weigh, and found it was 63 lbs. It was a nightmare. On the way back to WY, I told dad that if I'd have thought he had his passport with him, I'd have bought him a ticket on the spot to bring my stuff. I ended up changing my ticket to fly after the embargo was over--Jan 16. And as it were, on the 16th I actually had to purchase a duffel bag from the airline to get my two big bags to less than 70 lbs. I have way too much stuff.

8. The extra time at home gave me a chance to hang out in Pinedale with dad at Jason and Christy's. I had a good time helping him scrape and paint the walls. There's something very satisfying about painting, about watching the room transform before one's eyes.

9. Nothing too exciting has happened since I got back to Medellin. School is pretty much the same, although I've been very cognisent of my attitude and am trying to go with the flow a little more. I've resigned myself to the fact that things are not going to go the way I'd like them to (and believe they should), and I've decided to do the best that I can with what I have. I've also not been drinking as much...which must be a good sign.

10. Some friends and I checked out a local hole-in-the-wall salsa club last weekend, which was a super fun time. Man, these Colombians can dance! I'm definitely not the best salsa dancer, but I gave it the old college try and I don't do too badly when I let myself follow.

11. Next up on the agenda is to plan a trip for Semana Santa (the week before Easter). Jenna and I are hoping to pop over to Argentina, but we're not sure what we're doing yet. I'm excited!

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