(Friday) I headed to Cartago in the morning to catch a bus to a different town for an evening meeting. Of course, can you guess? The meeting got canceled while I was on the bus. Nonetheless, I enjoyed a delicious mint mochachino and ham/cheese sandwich with fries at a café shop (well…I made it a café shop, but I’m sure they think I’m pretty weird staying there hours at a time with an order of just one drink – which is all this PCV can afford). On my way home, with a migraine, right when I was getting off the bus, I was approached to tutor a kid for his final 3rd grade English exam. I know this boy, he’s adorable, pudgy, and sweet, even with my migraine, how could I say no? (Actually I couldn’t say no since she was holding on to my wrist the entire time lol) I have to say, tutoring little children is pretty rewarding, especially after you walk him home, you go home with a cabbage in your hand!
(Saturday) Finally sweated – sweated! We played for almost 2 hours straight, 4 on 4 fútbol, then introduced them to a game of Ultimate Frisbee, they loved it! But also realized, either I’m out of shape or I’m starting to feel my age playing with these teen/young 21 year olds!
(Sunday) I was invited to go to a Trucha, a place where you would fish your own trout and they would prepare the dish for you. I went with, who I consider my closest friend/family in town, Doña Natalia. She called me last minute as I was making my cabbage soup. How can I say no? It’s fish! and great company. It was one of the yummiest food ever, in Costa Rica! Then at night, I had a movie date with el azucareño. An end to a perfect day.
(Monday – today) I stopped by the escuela last week to ask the director if someone from the Ministry of Education contacted him about a night school program (long story – that’ll be for another blog), of course the answer is no. So to make small chats, I told him “I would love to work with the school”, and it appears he loved the idea, so he invited me to come back, today. Long story short, one of the teachers is out due to an illness, and the director is supposed to be covering for him, well… What happened? We discussed that I was going to “assist” and to “observe”, but today, after observing one class, I ended teaching two!
Observing a class
First I sat to observe, then he asked me to help him write some things on the board, then he gave me the book, then he told me he has a meeting to go to, and then told me to review “these pages” with the class. I taught them, of all the subjects possible, Spanish! Yes, moi! The person who is LEARNING Spanish is TEACHING it to 23 students! I was giggling to myself the entire time since I did not know what I was doing or even saying, but I improvised, it went well. Then next period, I thought he would take over, the same thing happened, except this time he didn’t use the meeting excuse, he just gave me the book. At least this time it was Math! I’m saved!
I value $1 like never before (right now: do I have to have milk this week?), my comfort zone is expanding each day, I learn how to improvise in a different language, and I’m not only a motivator for others, but also for myself, in a completely different level.
Days like these make all the hardships worth it.