We’ve had eventful past couple of weeks.
Last weekend after classes were finished we (our family and most of the students) went to a “fair” in Las Botijas and met up with some other Gringos that we’ve befriended. I’ve probably mentioned this before, but it’s always nice to see other white people. Being here, we have a small – let me emphasize small – taste of being a minority - more on that later. The fair was quite small, but allowed all of us to get away from campus and enjoy something different and a little fun. Once we got there after about an hour and a half trek over the mountain (which we were told was going to be 35 minutes), we watched a local soccer game for a bit and chatted with our fellow Americans. The girls (students) were getting a little antsy, I think because they wanted more attention or something, not really sure.
Allow me to sidetrack you for a moment…I find it quite funny that every time a group of girls or all of us are going somewhere off campus it becomes like a beauty pageant around here. Everyday campus life only includes small or no amount of makeup and “normal” clothes and shoes (like flip flops and socks-looking at a girl with them on right now, hehe). But when we are going somewhere, it’s a different ball game and it doesn’t matter when or where we are going. For example, we were going to visit a doctor’s office a couple weeks ago, and we had to leave at 4am because it’s basically 1st come first serve everyday (no appointments at the cheaper places), and one of our students woke up at 3am to get ready! These girls crack me up. Ok, that was more than a sidetrack…
The fair was quite underwhelming other than the ice cream bars that we had. There was some music playing, a booth thing selling clothes and toys, a food booth, and well that was about all to it. Anyway, like I said, nice to get out and get some exercise.
Yesterday we went to Zambrano with the older students that have been here longer and taught at a small youth program. The basic essence of the program is to provide some positive influence to children that don’t get a whole lot at home. Our students taught dental health, read books, helped with art projects and played with the children for 2 sessions. In between sessions we went to a Chinese restaurant. To my surprise it was quite delicious, a little greasy, but a good change of pace from beans and rice. We came back to the missionaries’ house that runs the program and played a board game and some volleyball. All in all, a fun time.
More on being a white person in Honduras…I suppose I don’t fully know what it really feels like to be a minority somewhere because we are tucked back a ways and kind of have our own little community here, not to mention that I’ve only been here for ¾ year, but you notice you’re a little different from the others. Most of the time it’s just the staring that makes you feel like you are sticking out, but also not understanding the language, sayings, and the customs and traditions also contributes. Not that people are trying to make me feel all weird or something, and don’t get me wrong, I’m not blaming anyone for doing this to me, just saying I can “feel” it sometimes. I suppose most importantly it gives me a greater appreciation for those people who are coming to America to try to have a better life and find it difficult to interweave into American society and customs. I think I’ll end there.