Here are some offline entries that I'm just now getting to post. Forgive the detail oriented writing. I haven't had time to spiff it up and make it read better yet.
10/16/04 8:46 PM
Well, this morning I slept in until around 9. I actually woke up around 6 or so, but I knew I had nothing to do, so I made myself stay in bed longer. I got up and got dressed and had breakfast all before 9:30. After being home for so long and sleeping so late in the day, it is hard for me to believe that my body is ready to go at 7 or before. I don’t really have to fight waking up in the morning, and really I fight to make myself sleep longer. I know it’s because of the sun. It is so bright in the mornings, and I can’t get used to sleeping with the eye shade thing yet. Maybe when my days are a little busier and I get more tired, I will be more inclined to sleep past 7.
Anyway, by 10 today, I was wondering what in the world I was going to do with my day. I knew I couldn’t stand sitting around watching TV all day again. My hips were hurting like they do when you spend too much time in bed or sitting. Charlotte rescued me by letting me go with them to the Ambassador’s house to swim in his pool. So today, on my one week anniversary of being in Guatemala, I went to the Ambassador’s house. Somehow, my life just seems to be too crazy. How do things like this happen to me?
Still, sitting around the pool, I was bored out of my mind. I wanted to run around screaming I was so tired of sitting. And while I am eternally grateful for these people who’ve taken me into their house and their family, they are a bit odd and sometimes I just feel a little uncomfortable around them.
But, praise Jesus, I was rescued. One of the teachers at CAG who also works with the youth at Union, took pity on me and invited me to go out to dinner with her and some of her friends. We went to Antigua. And man, I felt alive for the first time since I’ve been here. I fell in love with the city within the hour, and I had a deep yearning to stay longer and explore. I felt relatively safe for the first time since I got here. I wish I could live there instead of here, but it’s too far away from the church and on the wrong side from the schools I’m going to be working with. We ate at a place that was pretty much catered to gringos, but it was still very good. I hope that those girls continue to invite me to things, because I really enjoyed talking to them and hanging out with. They are my chance at having friends here, and I don’t want to screw that up.
It felt good to get out of the big city and it gave me hope that I’m going to not only just survive these coming months, but I may even enjoy some of them.
Today, I taught Sunday school for the first time. Things went really well, so I’m hoping that means Paul will back off a little and give me some space. I really want this man to trust me and to see that I am a capable person. I think I’ve figured out that Paul has been doing things on his own for so long, that now that he has help, he doesn’t quite know what to do about it. He’s not really good at giving up control, and delegating isn’t something he has totally figured out yet.
Tomorrow I go to take my Spanish placement test, so long as I have a ride there. I hate asking Charlotte to continue to shuttle me around. I cannot wait to get a car. Maybe tomorrow till bring a great little car at a price I can afford.
I’m looking forward to learning Spanish, but I feel a little funny about it. I am not sure why I have this hesitancy about it. I’ve been around people who’ve been here maybe a year and they seem to be so fluent and most of them didn’t take classes. I know I will learn this language and be able to use it eventually, but I wish I could flip the switch in my head faster. I think part of it is just letting myself look like an idiot. Part of it may also be feeling uncomfortable and out of control. Because if I start speaking in Spanish, I am more likely to put myself in situations where I am vulnerable and less able to protect myself and understand exactly what is going on around me.
I get to go climb Picaya this weekend. It’s one of the volcanoes that is in Guatemala City. It’s supposed to be awesome. I’m sure I will be out of breath from the altitude and from sitting on my butt for the last week. Man, I miss the outdoors like you would not believe. There is this garden plot that these people call a backyard, but it totally does not fill my need for open land. But open land is non-existent in the city because there isn’t room and it isn’t safe to have parks. I think that is why I enjoyed Antigua so much. There was a fountain and trees and open land. I mean, the city is the city, but it wasn’t a 30 minute drive to find a field.
I’ve never lived in a big city. I’m not sure I like it.