Julio’s got my back

Jazz found a goat’s leg to gnaw on. Such a happy dog!

Hello blog! It’s been too long. Mostly because my mental space has been cluttered for the past 3 months by something ethically and morally grey that I won’t be able to blog about until I am out of the country. Got to love diplomacy. That, and personal safety.

But I’m here, still alive, mostly well and still preoccupied by the problem but being proactive about it in a way that isn’t exactly justice but hopefully more sustainable in the big picture.

Fall is here. That means I can wear jeans without feeling like I’m going to die again. It means a comfortable sleeping temperature at night. It also means citrus! Oranges, tangerines, grapefruit, limes. YES! And avocados. Some avocados are ripening on my kitchen table right now. I am waiting a couple more days, buying some chicken and making a pot of chicken tortilla soup.

It’s amazing how big of an impact the summer drought has had on even the fall fruits though. They are definitely smaller, have not quite matured fully yet, and there are not as many as last year. Last year there were so many grapefruit that my neighbors were feeding the rotten ones to the cows! This year I have a feeling we’ll be fighting over them once they turn yellow (the sign they are ripe).

It rained today and is finally cool enough to turn on my oven so I made some banana bread and some roasted grapefruit chicken.

Anyways, enough about the weather. Here is something cute/funny/heartwarming that happened to me at school last week. I am doing some work with middle schoolers about values, self esteem, who am I?, etc and boy let me tell you, it’s hard to make middle schoolers think you are cool. We were such a-holes to our Spanish teacher in 7th grade and now I think: “I am so sorry, Mr. Bartlett.” Middle schoolers are crazy! They think they are the shit. Something just happens in 6th grade. They get full of hormones and confused and acne and starting to like girls and boys. Some of these boys are as tall as me. I am just that weird foreigner that smiles all the time and doesn’t understand Guarani  well.

Anyways I was writing some instructions on the board and I hear two students speaking to each other in guarani which to me sounds like:


“guaraniguaraniguarni norteamericana guarani”

(think Charlie Brown comic)

Norteamericana is my only cue it’s about me so I’m like “OK kids what’s going on. Do I have chalk on my face or something?”

Turns out one kid was making fun of me because I wrote down a verb in the wrong tense and the other kid was actually defending me essentially saying: “Common’ dude, she’s from the States don’t make fun of her. Of course her Spanish isn’t going to be perfect.”

Man that guy has balls to defend poor little ol’ foreign/weird me. I just wanted to go over and hug him to death but decided he would get made fun of it for the rest of the week and would probably hate me. So I just corrected my “si fueras animal cual seras?” to “si fueras animal cual serias?” and said thanks for the grammar lesson guys.

It’s just good to know that Julio’s got my back.


About Nicole FR

Just an old soul in limbo.
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