Veracruz

This is a place where there a lot of tourists. So far the trip has been improving as we have been doing more things outside and less things in museums. We saw some cool pyramid ruins surrounded by tropical stuff that made it look like we were in some kind of movie. Once again, sorry i won´t be posting pictures up.

Veracruz is very humid and hot, on the coast of the Gulf of Mexico, and prices are higher. However the hotel is the nicest one we´ve been in. One thing that is different is that you do not throw your toilet paper in the toilet… it has to go in the trash can! We´ve had to do that the entire trip so far. This is also a party town… last night I went to an outdoor rap concert next to the seaport. There were little two year olds collecting old beer cans with their mother… probably for money. After the concert we asked this guy who pulled up with his boat if we could get on (there were 8 of us and we are always in groups) and he let us. It was fun. We danced for about 10 minutes then left.

Today I went to an Aquarium which was pretty cool… saw some exotic birds, some big fish, and some sharks. While eating dinner back at the restaurant some old guy with an old violin came in and started playing. He had a stiraphome cup in his shirt pocket with which to receive tips. He played really good and I wanted to take a picture but my camera was in my room.. bummer! Things can be so random like that here! I love it! People are doing anything they can to make money. There are street vendors everywhere you look. Certain items you see all the time and other´s are rare. Í´ve bought a few souvineers but it´s hard because i really don´t like buying things i won´t use.

The last thing i want to say is that we saw an old prison today which was built on the seaport and was also used as other things. There wasn´t any bars but the rooms were made of corral and stone mortar, and were rounded with one seam on top. The tour guide told us how the rooms echo singing very well, in fact when he sang, he hit notes that resonated the stone and kept on humming as he started singing the next words in his song! It was almost mystical. After the tour we went back to the room and sang hymns. Other Latin tourists heard us and stopped to listen. It was a great moment as the walls resonated our voices.. the most wonderful choir experience ever. Perhaps an experience which touched some of the people who were gathered to listen to us. Later, one old lady asked Chad to sing “Yesterday” to her (by John Lennon), which he did with style as he wore his pilot sunglasses. hahaha! Well I gotta go now. Hasta!

¡Hola Mexico!

Well here i am on the… third day in Mexico City. I have no idea where to begin and I hardly have any time to say what I want to say. First, picture down town LA with cobblestone streets and tons of street vendors. That`s where i´ve been. So far we´ve seen Aztec ruins (Right here in the middle of the city!), Museums (which were really cool but I was getting tired of being in them ALL DAY). Sat in the bell tower of a Cathedral while they rang the bells at NOON, walked around the Mexico City Temple, met the Missionarios, ate the food (I actually feel BETTER after eating all this spicy food, not worse, and NO diahhrea), and part of the best part was today… we went to an LDS school and watched a dance show! I wish I had pictures to show… which I do, but none of them are online right now. Oh yeah, I LOVE learning the language, but i HATE the fact that I can hardly talk to people. Actually tonight I felt pretty good about myself because I went up to a guy at a nice hotel and asked ¨Donde esta bano?¿) p.s. the keyboards here are partly in espanol so i´m not typing too well. Anyways, the guy pointed me in the right direction. haha!!!

So far the people are great, my camera takes cool pictures even though it´s heavy… (I feel like Steve Kugath on Spring Summit). We leave Mexico City tomorrow. I´m kinda glad. It´s very noisy here and I hardly sleep. We have a window that faces the street and there is noise all night long! I miss the country, but I´m so grateful to experience the city right now! one more thing before i go… the missionaries we met showed us where this sweet restaurant is where a member is a cook. it was a three course meal for only 35 pesos, which is about 3 dollars and thirty cents! Dang good food! Well, take care yáll! Hasta La Vista!!! Maybe next time i´ll find a way to get pics up here, if not, when i get home. i´ve taken 200 pics already!

LIfe at BYUI

Going to make this short: I’m loving being here at school right now… the MesoAmerica classes are keeping me very busy… it’s good to see friends again… can’t wait to go climbing… I fly to Mexico City on April 23rd (Monday)… I’m looking for an internship for Rec Leadership this Fall… I don’t want to stop… The End.

Jumping Into Mesoamer… uh Homework actually

Whew… these past four days have been soooooo busy! I guess I never figured that the two weeks of classes before the Mesoamerica tour would be so cram-packed! I’ve had between 6-9 hours of classes each day, plus homework in between, 150 pages of text to read, and three test so far. I almost forgot why I’m even here. It feels like we’ll never get to Mexico because we have too much homework to do! Our “midterm” starts next week. I’ve been INSIDE all the time since I got here! Even if I could go outside and go rock climbing or something, it’s been cold here (compared to Arizona); still freezes at night and gets into the 40’s in the daytime. I’m not used to this (97 degrees in AZ) so I’m inside anyways!

Hmm, obviously I don’t have time to be updating my blog. Everybody in my classes are also going on the Mesoamerica Tour. So far we are all just “acquaintances” with each other but I’m sure that will change once we have time to talk instead of doing so much homework. I love the subjects we are learning and I think we have some of the best teachers (I’m taking English: Introduction to Literature, and Field Biology (more like study of ecology)). I miss having people I’m familiar with here with me: Jo, Angela, Sven, Mary, etc.

Well, here is a poem I wrote a long time ago. I will probably be embarrassing myself by putting this on the Internet, but it’s interesting to see a struggle I was thinking of three years ago…(I just learned in class that this is a Sonnet – 14 line poem 🙂

Outside is my life
Outside is my reason
This place I am in is mine no more
They see me as a wanderer; a floater
I am a man of direction; of steady perseverance
I cannot feel free when I lie to myself
The judgments of others keep us in bondage
In bondage to a mental prison in a false world
And in our houses, office, and cities
Concerned with what they think, and not who we are
I want no more to be concerned with this
I will go outside
Outside is my life
Outside is my reason
11 July 04

Trees gone from MC

At first when i saw this i was in shock! What has been done? Were the trees diseased? I asked someone in the bookstore and found out that the new MC will be built here and thats why the trees are gone.