Friday, August 7, 2009

Rain, Rain, Rain

Ok so it has rained a little EVERY DAY since I have been here...and Sergio's mom and him hate it...but let me tell you, I am in love with the rain. It is so nice to be somewhere it actually rains. I hope to bring some back with me....

Yesterday Sergio was supposed to have a baseball game, but it ended up getting rained out. So we went over to his Grandma's for a while. I love her. She reminds me so much of my Grandma makes me really want to visit my Grandparents. Anyway, she speaks VERY little English, but last night she told me that I was like her son and she wanted me to stay in Venezuela. I felt so loved. She found out too that I was actually leaving this Sunday, I guess she forgot, and got really sad and said the time went by too fast and she wanted me to stay longer. She made me promise I would come back and visit, haha.

Last night Sergio's mom made Omelets. They were really good, and while we were eating she cleaned something on my glass and I said she was "such a mom" and she said something that was HILARIOUS, that I cannot repeat will have to ask me in person, but it almost made all of wet our pants in laughter.

We watched "Angels and Demons" last night was REALLY good. I was in shock. It freaked Sergio out, not sure why. He reminds me of Amanda in suspensful movies.

I also bought 6 movies yesterday...I got "Up", "The Proposal", "Push", "Gran Turino", "Changeling", and "17 Again"...I know, you're jealous since most of those technically aren't even out on DVD yet, but yeah I'm excited to have them. That's actually how the sell movies here surprisingly.

Today we've just been chilling and watching TV and playing Wii. Sergio is supposed to have a baseball game again tonight, but I think it's going to get rained out again. We shall see.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Te con Te

So last night we went to this new restaurant in town called "Te con Te". It was a fancy restaurant that served fast food type food. It was a really cool "American" feeling atmosphere and the food was REALLY good. Sergio's mom tried to tell this joke at dinner and it was so dumb it was funny. haha.

Today Sergio has a baseball game with his University team that randomly plays. According to him the games here are very different so it'll be interesting for me to get to watch a Venezuelan baseball game.

We also watched "Butterfly on a Wheel" last night. It had Pierce Brosnan in it. It was ok. Did you know that they don't actually buy any real movies in this country? Everyone buys all their movies from the back of peoples cars. And they're only $1.50. Crazy.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Birthday Party and Sambil

So yesterday was another really good. There really hasn't been a "terrible" day on this vacation yet!

We got up about 11:00 and headed over to Sergio's dad's house to celebrate Sergio's half-brother's birthday. He was turning 6. He is the cutest kid! He rode in the car with us and was hilarious. He was rapping along with the radio and showing me all of his dance moves. So funny. He didn't speak English, but when we were eating lunch he wanted to show me some English that his teacher had taught him, so he told me all his colors in English and he said 'hello'. He was hilarious. We had some really really good spaghetti for lunch. I figured out that here in Venezuela what they call bologna is actually ground beef. Interesting.

After lunch Sergio and I headed to the mall. Sergio's dad took us, but on the way he had to drop some other people off another words another latino car ride. We fit 7 people in a four person car. Talk about an experience. haha.

Anyway the mall (Sambil) was HUGE. Like the Galleria. We first went to the movie theatre to see if any of the movies were playing in English and we ended up seeing "State of Play" (with Russell Crowe, Rachael McAdams, and Ben Affleck) it was REALLY good. But here's the thing, at theaters here in Venezuela they sell two kinds of movie tickets....the regular kind (like the US) and then "premium" theatre seats. The premium are like a dollar more, but you get an assigned seat number, and the seats are these really big nice recliners with foot stools and everything. It was SOO nice. Definietly the most comfortable theatre experience I've ever had.

Then we just chilled and walked around the mall. We went into a couple stores but I couldn't find too many things I loved. I ended up getting myself two really cool shirts that say Venezuela on them somewhere. I also ended up getting Sabrina (my "niece") something too. Then we ate some KFC and it was a nice reminder of home. It was REALLY good.

I'm not sure what we're doing today. I think for the first time in like a week, we're just going to relax at home!

Monday, August 3, 2009

New Outlooks

So today was fun. I woke up late, but I have not been sleeping well so it didn't feel that refreshing. After lunch Sergio and I went to his orthodontist because he had to get spacers in. They do things so differently here. They don't make ortho appointments. Weird I know. So we just showed up at the office and sat in line until it was his turn. The waiting room was about 10ft by 2ft, no lie. It was SOO small. We acutally waited outside. And her office wasn't much bigger.

After we got done there we went to tell Tamara goodbye because she was going on vacation for the next week so I wouldn't get to see her again to say goodbye. I was sad because she was my only other English speaking friend, haha, but glad at the same time because now she could text Sergio a little less (they were texting 24/7)!

Then Sergio and I walked around San Cristobal. We checked out this little mall, which was really dumb. Then we had to go find 5 different ATM machines until we found one that would actually take Sergio's debit card. Then we went to this video game store where they burn copies of the wii games you want and sell them for like $1.50 each. I was jealous. You have to unlock your wii to make them work though and I don't want to unlock mine. Plus it's illegal. I like legal stuff.

Sergio's dad then picked us up to take his back to Sergio's place. I got a real Latino experience, haha, because we fit a ton of people into this tiny little car. Priceless.

Sergio's GF was leaving today too to go to France for 2 months so we went to the bus station to tell her goodbye (she was taking a bus to another city to get on a plane). When we got there her best friend was there too. Mariane. She spoke a little English and we talked. I was in love. haha. She was funny. And she told me she was going to come back to Texas with me and that we would have to think of some kind of story to tell my parents about how we were getting married so fast. If only. Oh well.

Tomorrow Sergio and I are going to the huge mall in town. We may go see a movie too, but we have to find out if it's in spanish or just with spanish subtitles. Fun stuff!

The Rest of the Weekend

So after I did para-gliding on Saturday, we all went over to Sergio's grandfather's house for dinner. His grandfather owns the apartment complex that he lives in so of course his grandfather has the nicest place. But oh man, I felt like I was in an episode of "MTV Latin Cribs". haha. It was sooo nice. They had a wrap around balcony that went around most of the apartment building. It was amazing.

We ate Arepas again for dinner. I really like them, but man they eat them way too much in this country, haha.

The next day (Sunday), Sergio's mom and Grandma wanted to take me to this little town about 20 min away where it's kind of like the "Bluebonnet Festival" or something. I can't really think of any other way to describe it. There were like 2 million people in a twenty foot space but it's the only place around here where I could actually buy souvenirs that say Venezuela on them. So that's why we went there.

It was so funny being there with all those people, because Sergio kept freaking out when he couldn't see me because he kept thinking I was going to get kidnapped. It was hilarious. I did find some pretty cool souvenirs though.

But man talking to Sergio when everyone else is around is almost impossible. He is like me, he likes to hear what everyone else is talking about in the car, but see I can multi-task. He can't. And when he's been talking in Spanish a while and then he tries to talk in English, sometimes his accent is so heavy I can barely understand him. It's a tad frustrating.

Today I think we're going to the mall and stuff. I'm excited to see the mall and feel a little more "American" finally, haha.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Lost in Translation

Ok, so as Americans, when we hear the word zip-line we know that that it is when a professional hooks you to a wire and you slide from somewhere high up to somewhere down low. It's fun, but a little scary. Everyone knows that that is a zip-line, right? Well Venezuelans don't know what a zip-line is. I tried explaining it to Sergio and his mom before I even got here and they had me under the impression that they understood what it was, and had booked me a trip on a zip-line through the forest.

So we headed out today to go on what I thought was a zip-line through the forest. We drove up this mountain for like 20 mintues (about 5 miles) to the very tip top of the mountain. It was soooooo high and by far the most beautiful view on the trip that I have seen so far. As we're driving up to the top of the mountain, Sergio informs me that he is deathly afraid of heights and is no longer doing it with me. So I was bummed.

Anyway, as we're driving up to the top I notice one of the signs and it has a picture that doesn't exactly look like a person on a zip-line. So I ask Sergio to explain to me exactly what we're doing. Well come to find out, once we get to the top of the mountain, we are NOT zip-lining. We are PARA-GLIDING!!!!!!!!! I freaked out.

A zip-line is one thing. You are hooked on to a cord. I felt somewhat safe. When I found out I was going to be flying through the air hooked on to nothing but some leader guy and a parachute I kinda started freaking out. In fact, after we parked the car and walked the rest of the way to the tip top of the mountain I started having panic attacks. I just knew that I was going to die and I had not told any of my family or friends goodbye.

After we got to the tip top, we met the flight instructors and the guy that would be leading my flight. THANK GOD they spoke English. That began to make me feel a lot more comfortable. It also made me feel better when I found out that Sergio's girlfriend would be riding one too, and that she was going first.

So after the hooked me in and everything and explained what I was going to do, I began to calm down a lot. To give you a picture, at this time I had stopped shaking....haha.

They guy explained to me that he's been doing this for 12 years and that he's never had any problems. He stood behind me and hooked me into his stuff and I felt kinda like we were going to be sky-diving. So then I started to get a little excited to be doing this because I have always wanted to sky-dive.

He explained to me that all I had to was run, when he told me, until we ran off the edge of the cliff. Scary thought, I know. And then he said all I had to do was sit back and enjoy the ride.

So the wind pulled the parachute into the air, and we ran straight off the cliff into nothing, and the wind picked us up and we were flying. Let me tell you that that was probably the coolest feeling in the world. I sat back like I was in a recliner and just enjoyed the ride. I have never felt anything so exhilarating and calming. I would do it again in a SECOND! In fact, I'm going to look for places to do it in Texas.

Anyway, so as we were flying I was trying to film a little for Stacey. I wanted to make sure she could feel like she was there too. Even though I was beyond nervous that I was going to drop the camera and have to end up paying for it. (I am posting vids on Facebook)

As we got near the landing the guy (Ronald) told me to just walk to the ground. The landing was SO easy. We seriously just stepped onto the ground from the sky.

After we landed my guide packed all the stuff (parachute, helmets, and backpacks) and we walked to the road where a truck picked us up to take us back up to the top of the mountain.

This in my opinion was probably the scariest part. The truck looked to be 50 years old, rusty, and about to fall apart. Andreina (Sergio's GF) and I got into the truck, and right away I thought the driver was drunk. He tried to drive off THREE times before all the guides were situated in the back. The kept yelling at him to WAIT. So one of the guides came up, pulled him out of the inside of hte truck, and he drove instead.

The drive back up to the top felt like it took forever. But the driver played English music the whole time for me, haha. When we got back up to the top we told Sergio and his mom all about it.

That was probably the coolest thing I've ever done in my ENTIRE life. Sky-diving is sooo next.

oh. dear. God.

Ok so I went to the dance/party last night and it was....a trip.

So Sergio and I got ready and left the house at abut 9:20 to go pick up this girl. We all had to wear white shirts because it was a "White" party (fitting right?) We walked outside and got into the car with this guy and girl I didn't know. About 20 minutes into the ride I realize that it's Sergio's dad and step-mom. Good job for him for never telling me that! So we pick up Tamara and head to the party, which is like 20 minutes away. We drove up to this HUGE country club, and I was reminded of Texas right away, haha. There were horses, and and it was very country-fied. So Sergio's dad dropped us all off and we headed into the "fun".

Right away I was nervous because I don't like big crowds. Period. But we went in and right away headed to where all of Tamara's friends where. Sergio knew a couple so right away he felt comfortable, and right away I felt WAY out of place. They introduced me to some people. Already I could tell that most everyone was drunk. And this drunk guy who I met spoke no English but he kept wanting to try to tell me things in English because he was going to live in Canada for a year. He was pretty wasted and pretty entertaining. Then Sergio left me to go dance, and I was freaking out but before he left me he introduced me to a guy who spoke English! YAY!

The guy is getting his degree in English, so he spoke it pretty well. But of course, he was wasted to so what he had to talk about was pretty interesting. That guy (can't remember the name) introduced me to another guy and girl who spoke English as well, so I had people to talk to a little. The other guy I met had just come back from spending a year in New York so he spoke English real well. They kept trying to get me to dance and I told them I DON'T dance. And then the guy was like "come on, it's just like having sex standing up!", and I had to hold back a laugh.

They also told me that they would have never guessed I was American. They all thought I was Venezuelan at first! COOL FOR ME!

Then Sergio came back and we just chilled in the crowd. I got feeling really claustrophobic and pretty much everyone was smoking too....and we all know I can't stand smoke. But anyway, then this girl came up and wanted to talk to Sergio and me, she was drunk too. She just kept telling me how handsome I was....hahahaha.....and she asked if i had a girlfriend, and so on and so on. But then I got really uncomfortable when I found out she was 17!!!! She looked 25!!! So then things just got weird for me, haha.

After sitting in the group for a couple hours, I had to go sit outside the building on the balcony because the smoke was just becoming too much. Two of the guys I met came out for a while to smoke some more and chatted up about New York and their University. Then Sergio came out to chill for a while because he was getting really tired too and he doesn't really like to dance or drink either.

Sergio went back inside to dance one last time, and this waiter guy came up to me on the balcony and asked me something, and I said "No habla Espanol" and he just kept talking to me! He wouldn't stop! I kept telling him "I don't understand" or "I don't know spanish" and he just kept talking. It was hilarious afterwards but i just kept begging God to send Sergio back to translate, but he didn't come! So finally the guy gave up and walked away. FRUSTRATING haha.

As we left we saw a Llama too.....i thought he was going to charge us and attack. but he didn't thank goodness!

We decided to leave the party/dance at 3am and went to get a taxi only to find out there were none. So thank God sergio had a number of a taxi driver who we called to come pick us up. Let me tell you, Taxi drivers in Venezuela = SCAREY. I saw my life flash before my eyes several times.

And that was the end of the fun.

Supposedly today we're going to the zip-line. We'll see if that acutally pans out.