Sunday, October 18, 2009

The art of doing nothing

Today i spent my day doing one of my favorite things in the world, nothing :) Yesterday we had Stephanie and her husband and kids over for supper, and i cooked "Dominican" or pretty close, considering the limitations i encounter in this foreign land...I went all out and made rice, red stewed beans and a pastelon de platano maduro that would have been a lot better if the plantains had been a bit more yellow, but that tasted as good as i remember my mom making it. They seemed to enjoy it, and i enjoyed the fellowship a whole lot more. And the cake- Stephanie makes really good cake, so she decided to bring one to, as she said, contribute to the meal. It was very good. I also made tostones, because Peter found some green plantains in a Market near our place, and we got a bunch, big as barahoneros- No idea how they made it here, because the ones i see in the supermarket normally are already starting to get pintos and are pretty small...But one should not question her blessings, for once, i have something i thought impossible to find here, and I'm happy- Now on to finding chicharron so i can make mofongo... Maybe i should import an anafe and a big paila and make it myself :)
Stephanie and I went scrap booking today, from 10 to 4, and that was nice too- i believe it is important for women to get together and just talk and be women, without guys around, specially if said guys are keeping the children (and have gone to a football game, something that doesn't really counts as one of my favorite things to do). Is not that we say or do anything that should be kept hidden, but there's an easiness of conversation when men are not around that i can't explain. I'm sure the same happens to them.
I worked in my "virtual scrap booking" and had a lot of fun talking and listening to other people talk about their lives, their families and what they do. I find incredibly interesting hearing about the same thing as seen by different people in so many ways. Like someone once said, each head holds a world. And i really like exploring.
My life these last few weeks has been rather normal, doing chores and all. I taught Lara we have a big mountain we got to climb (the stairs), jungles to cross (involves crawling under the living room table and over the couch, then jumping up and down) and balls to attend (we dance to Barbie's music), for we are dancing princesses in our spare time. Princesses that play the drums (oven handle, a chair and the cabinet) with our magic sticks (wooden spoons)... We also make funny animal sounds, and watch cartoons. I have such a hard job.
Lara's speech has improved so much in the last few months, she can weave stories and talk about her favorite things. And she's letting me do her hair, if i let her do mine- but I'm still not sure if i got a good deal there, she seems to enjoy pulling my hair more than combing it. I wish she was as good in Spanish as she is in English, though. She can say words, and repeats everything i say, and obviously understands what i tell her- but still her answers are in English. I keep trying, i know someday something will click and she'll speak back to me in my language.
I can't believe I've been here almost two years... It seems like yesterday that we boarded that plane with our kid and dog, to come to a place i knew only from what Peter had told me. And now i call it my own. I like this little city, with its friendly people (except that girl that works in Subway- you need to chill or get a real job, soon) and dog loving mail carriers. The only thing i wish is for my family to visit me, i want to show them how beautiful this country can be, that there's more to this place than crowded streets. Have them watch how wheat waves like water in the breeze. Or fields full of sunflowers as far as i can see. Or how a tree's leaves seem to catch fire this time of the year, and how still everything looks under the cover of the snow. I wish i could show them what i see, and how it makes me feel. My mom says I've always being into scenery, that one time i made a friend of hers stop in the middle of nowhere to see the mountains, and the best times i remember when i was little were spent watching the ocean and collecting maqueys with my aunt Tania... If being a grown up means losing that, then I'm in trouble, because no matter how old i get, i still have to pause, sit and enjoy. I hope Lara joins me in doing nothing someday. I could give her some lessons...Maybe we should start classes tomorrow :)