i feel my spanish improving, slowly but surely. my listening skills far exceed my speaking abilities, but thanks to our culture&conversation class, i'm beefing up my vocabulary to talk about gender, racial, and political issues--the things i REALLY want to be talking about down here! it's difficult to get into a lot of social justice issues without access and connections, but i'm doing my best by chatting up those who seem interested in engaging social justice issues. in truth, THIS is why i'm here. (of course none of this would be possible without improving my spanish ability!)
i've grown to adore my host family. they are truly gems on this planet and i'm blessed to know them. i look forward to keeping in touch with them when i leave and someday--ojala--returning. yes: i'm always making plans!
my favorite day of this entire trip thus far was our second day in uruguay. the temperature magically reached about 75 or 80 degrees and we just happened to stumble upon an incredible, unpopulated beach! it was such a sigh of relief, a literal breath of fresh air, to leave the city and take in the landscape. i wish i had more time down here, to travel through the hills and mountains and get a sense of the land. of course, the day culminated with a love-fest with some random beach dogs! no perfect day is complete without dog love.