1. Paper or Plastic?
4. Thank goodness for white-out
My students LOVE white-out. To an excessively ridiculous point. Apparently it is a cultural thing, as you can see from this sign. It was cemented in facing the wrong direction. Fortunately, whoever made that mistake was adept at liquid paper usage, and the wrong was quickly whited...I mean righted.5. Cheapest PADI certification in the world
The dry season runs from November to April, more or less. December and January can have cold/rainy days if a cold Northern wind blows in. This year was kind of freakish in that it got really cold (for here) for nearly the whole month of January. Normally that doesn't happen. Even with the preparation I had from living in Texas, the dry season down here was the hottest, stickiest several months I have ever experienced. When rainy season hit, it brought sweet sweet freedom from hot weather oppression.
During the rainy season, it is really hot until it starts to rain. Once the drops start to fall, it cools off, and it is really pleasant. Unlike weather in Texas, weather here is fairly predictable. Every day during rainy season, it will start off cloudy. The clouds will dissappear around 8:30 or 9am, and the sun will try to beat you down. The clouds make a comeback around 3:30 or 4pm, when a delicious breeze carries them in. Then it starts raining between 5 and 6 until sometime after I have fallen asleep. This is the weekday schedule. Magically, the rain knows when it is weekend and children do not have recess, and it pours pretty much non-stop Saturday and Sunday.
My feeling towards rainy season are conflicted. I love the refreshing climate the rainy season brings. On the other hand, the hot and sunny days are ideal for washing laundry. Because, in case you do not remember, we wash our laundry by hand in the pila and then hang it out to dry. And leaving laundry out for nasty city rain negates any washing that occurred. Which means that I am running out of clean clothes. And Febreze-ing my dirty clothes isn't an option. (just kidding mom, I never really did that. often) I think I figured out a clever schedule where I wash my clothes when I get home from work, then leave them in a wet pile in a bag in my kitchen overnight. Then I hang them up in the morning when I wake up. I think one more load like that, and then I can hold off until I have access to a real washer and dryer. I never have been so stoked to do laundry.
I have made references to job hunting in some previous posts, but have not given the results here. So, in case you have not heard, I will be teaching science in Bratislava, Slovakia next school year. The reason this was announced in my friend Erica's blog is because she will be a mere three hours away in Ostrava, Czech Republic!! If that wasn't awesome enough, the Slovak word for brothers is "brats". I can already tell that I am going to like it over there.
This causes problems when a student says something incorrectly and I correct them. Because they have been taught (sometimes for years already) that the way they are saying it is correct. And whenever I correct them, they act like I am trying to trick them...like "hahaha, I taught these kids how to sound stupid!" or something. So it is generally a fight to convince students that I know my language a little better than them, and I really want to help them at least sound intelligent. For example, you don't ask "When we are going to recess?"...you ask "When are we going to recess?" That took a good month before they finally believed me.
This morning, the biology teacher came in to talk to Gabrielle and I. He was talking about lizards with webbed necks, and that kind of transitioned into Turner syndrome (one of the manifestations of this disease is a webbed neck). He kept referring to the webbed neck as an enlarged cervical membrane. And he wouldn't believe Gabrielle or I when we said that the cervical membrane does not refer to extra skin on your neck. It literally took 15 minutes and the help of Google before he believed that the cervical membrane refers to special lady parts.
sucker. I can't believe he fell for that...
In a conscious effort to curb my natural tendency towards super long posts, I am only going to post the chorus and 7th verse, which is what is sung normally (kind of like how the Aggie War Hymn technically has 2 verses, but people only ever know the 2nd verse). That way you can see how lovely their anthem is.
Tu bandera es un lampo de cielo (Your flag is a splendor of sky)
Por un bloque de nieve cruzado (Crossed with a band of snow)
Y se ven en su fondo sagrado (And in its sacred depths there can be seen)
Cinco estrellas de palido azul (Five pale blue stars)
En tu emblema, que un mar rumoroso (In your emblem, which a rough sea)
Con sus ondas bravias escuda (Shields with its wild waves,)
De un volcan tras la cima desnuda (Behind the bare summit of a volcano)
Hay un astro de nitida luz (There is a star of clean light)
Por guarder ese emblema divino (To guard this divine emblem)
Marcharemos, oh Patria, a la muerte. (We will march, Oh fatherland, to the death.)
Generosa sera nuestra suerte (Our luck will be generous)
Si morimos pensando en tu amor. (If we die thinking of your love.)
Defendiendo tu santo bandera (Defending your holy flag)
Y en tus pliegues gloriosos cubiertos (And shrouded in its glorious folds)
Seran muchos, Honduras tus muertos (There will be many, Honduras, your dead)
Pero todo caeran con honor. (But all will fall with honor.)
Isn't that pretty? When this is sung, you begin and end with the chorus, like a really long and patriotic musical sandwich. So even the one verse on its own is probably the longest national anthem. In order to graduate, every senior in Honduras must memorize all seven verses, as well as 100 questions and their answers about various parts of the anthem. They are given a test in which a verse, and a certain number of questions are drawn randomly. The student must then perform their chosen verse and then answer the questions, verbatim, with the answer given in the booklet. If the answer is not verbatim, it is not correct. As one of my coworkers says: "Who says schools in Honduras don't raise independent thinkers? We have been independent since 1838!"