The weekend excursions were fantastic, but it was time to buckle down and get some Spanish credits!
Monday was our first day of class, and it was quite the headache. I knew the professor would speak entirely in Spanish, I just didn’t realize how difficult it would be to constantly translate in my head for five hours straight. Oh, and I forgot to mention that I broke down and cried during our placement test. Both the professor and I were very embarrassed.
After class on Tuesday, we went to El Teatro Nacional, a gorgeous theatre in downtown San José. I was amazed at all the ceiling art. Have you ever just considered how difficult that would be? It’s hard enough to paint sitting or standing, but I wonder what it’s like to lay on your back and do it! I bet a lot of paint drips in your eyes…
Apparently, this was just added into the list of top ten ceilings in the world? Check it out here: http://www.ticotimes.net/2014/01/20/costa-ricas-national-theater-mural-named-one-of-10-great-ceilings-around-the-world. Our guide explained that different parts of the theatre were exported from different nations. The gates to the entrance are from England, the doors are from America, and Italy donated some beautiful mirrors featured upstairs. If you’re ever in Costa Rica, I’d highly recommend stopping by, or better yet, go see a show. We’re trying to get tickets now, but most of the shows are during our school hours.
My roommates and I are pretty studious people. We quickly formed a habit of returning home as soon as our academic duties were over, but we found out that everyone else in the program was staying in town to hang out after class. We did not want to seem antisocial, and we definitely wanted to be included in the group activities, so we joined twenty-odd 20-somethings to the movie theater to see the latest X-Men installment on Wednesday. I was pleasantly surprised that the movie was still in English and included Spanish subtitles (extra Spanish practice!). We had such a great time, and to answer a question from a male friend, yes, it was absolutely necessary to see Logan’s tushy in this movie.
It took me falling off the bus one time to get acclimated to the experience. I’m totally fine with being squished in the aisle or squished in the seat 🙂 My mind is less occupied by trying not to fall and more focused on the people around me. The ticos are such a beautiful people. I think it’s all because of pura vida. They have a grasp on how to live a life of purity and simplicity that all lead to joy, and you can see it physically manifest on their faces and overall attitude. They truly are the happiest people I’ve met.
Thursday was a nerve-wrecking day because I had to give a presentation entirely in Spanish. I got my score back but have no clue what I got. There were exclamation marks and smiley faces, so I’m thinking it’s something above a C…
Afterwards, we took an educational field trip to Our Lady of the Angels Basilica. The basilica was gorgeous.
We were able to listen to the priest speak for a while, then we walked around the grounds. Then it was time to dash home and cram for an exam the next day.
After Friday’s exam, we had time to kill, so we explored our campus and found a fantastic bakery. Then, we settled down in front of the fútbol field and watched some ticos play ball. It was right there, sitting with my friends, a storm swirling in the clouds, and delicious bread in my hands, that I truly felt like I had found pura vida. There was a pure joy in the simplicity of the little things in life.
Till next time!