07 March 2009

¿Como se dice “journal”?

I have an idea in my head: I want to say “wheat flour,” but I can’t. Our bread isn’t like that. It’s not white bread, it’s __. It’s different. It’s not white bread. I’m not saying anything. And so I might as well not talk at all.

This was yesterday. Today, when I ran into one of these walls, I ran up the stairs, my feet tapping on the second and fourth wooden steps. I grabbed my journal; it’s orange with black text; and I went back. Es de trigo. Nuestro pan, hecho de mí mamá, es de trigo. She still didn’t get it though: this bread is made out of wheat too. I know, but it’s white flour. Así the language isn’t necessarily the problem. Lack of knowledge in general can be a problem. And it separates us—we people—from each other. Very frustrating.

* * *

Mike told me that it’s better to live with a Chilean family than on your own. He’s about my height, with dark hair, but longer than mine. And he has a soul patch—just a bit of scruff under his lip. He said there’s just one down side: you can’t have sexual relations. Well, you can, he told me; you just can’t at home. I had this friend, he brought this girl home, and he was ******* ***. His family got all mad. But he was like, I thought I lived here. But they didn’t think it was cool.

Mike’s from Hawaii. He surfs. He told me my white tennies and my hoodie are just screaming gringo. I’ll try and fix that, I said. But he said there no problem, except that people might try to screw you over. Mike was here for a semester in 2005. Since then he changed his major to Spanish. Now he’s back. I wasn’t planning on bringing any girls home anyway.

Mí mamá, Ana Maria, thought I was lost this afternoon. I went with Mike down to the street Valparaiso. I was looking for a wall adapter, so I can plug in this laptop. I still haven’t plugged it in. Mike says I don’t need a converter, just an adapter. That’s what the little black box is for. I guess I should just trust him. But I didn’t get back to the universidad until 2:00. Her daughter, Kati, said I should be done around one. But I thought she wasn’t going to come until I called. That’s why she gave me her number. But she just came anyway. Then she had the school call Mike, but he said he’d left me a while ago. That’s because I went to look for an alarm clock. When I plugged mine in, with my other adapter (the one without a ground wire), it sped up. My alarm went of at 7:00, like it was supposed to. But it wasn’t really 7:00; it was 3:00 a.m. Nice. But I was pretty tired, so I fell right back to sleep. So mamá told me about seven times how I was supposed to get from the school to the bus station. It’s just a simple U, she said. Seven times. I think she thought I’d get lost again.

For lunch, we had spaghetti, but they didn’t call it that, with bread. I also had a way good pear and some bread. I had the same thing for dinner, but with jam on the bread. I ate the same meal twice yesterday too, but that’s because they asked if I preferred more fish and rice or some bread. It’s good food though. So far Mocteczuma hasn’t had his revenge on this Anglo.

If I don’t write tomorrow, it’s because Shanghai II got fried when I plugged it in.

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— J