Monday, December 15, 2008
One Week until Christmas Vacation!
We have been pretty busy the past few weeks, and we're definitely ready to go on vacation. The elementary school has had so many fundraisers, such as bringing in items for blind people, collecting food supplies for the maintenance workers at our school, garage sales to help nearby schools, and of course the big one: The Readathon. Our students collected pledges and read as much as they could in an hour one day. The money is going to help public school students in nearby Brasilito and Huacas by school supplies and uniforms. It was a big event with a large turnout from the community, and so far it seems as though the kids have brought in a lot of money.
The elementary school also put on a big Christmas production for parents. There were songs, plays, and dances. My class performed the Polar Express, and Allie's did The Grinch who Stole Christmas. Allie even played the role of Max the dog in her play. I helped with curtains and changing the set backstage. The Christmas show was fun for the parents and students, but it was a lot of work.
The day after the Christmas show, my soccer team from Matapalo came to play a game against the Country Day School team. It was a really big deal for the Matapalo team, who usually just play pickup soccer games in the town square. The Matapalo team ended up crushing the CDS team pretty badly, 7-1. They are all natural soccer players, and the CDS kids have not been playing as long. Still, it seemed like everyone had a good time.
We also had a very fun and very different staff Christmas party last Saturday. There was gorgeous 85 degree weather that day, so it did not really feel like a typical Christmas. There were tables set up by the swimming pool, with some red and green balloons hanging from some of the palm trees. Each table had a sign that said "Party Christma's." Three pigs were killed for the party, and there were huge pots of roasted pork, chicharones, and tamales. There was also plenty of cold Imperial and Pilsen, dancing, and karaoke. It was a lot of fun because all of the maintenance workers, gardeners, and people from the cafeteria came in vans with there family. Kids played in the pool and had hamburgers and ice cream. Everyone seemed to really enjoy the day. One of our friends brought her new labrador/great dane puppies for some of the coworkers. One of the puppies stayed at our house for awhile during the party, and it was funny to see how skeptical Isa was about this new little creature in her house.
After the party we went to the Fiesta del Pueblo in Villa Real, about 10 minutes away. The week before we were at the Fiesta in La Garrita, another town near us. The Fiestas are a big deal in Guanacaste, because this is the cattle country of Costa Rica. It's cool to see everyone out and about in their boots and belt buckles. There are fun rodeos, and they're pretty humane with the bulls. There's also great music and food.
This week we have spent a lot of time at the mechanic, at the bank paying our yearly marchamo for the car and getting out money to bring home, and just tying up lose ends in general. We are really enjoying life here with all of the nice people we are meeting, our great classes, the beautiful weather, and our wonderful little dog. With that said, we're both very excited and ready to come home to the states for a couple weeks of relaxation.