The honeymoon is over

…..for the kids at least.  Everyone woke up this morning proclaiming that they would NOT be going to school today.  Because that wasn’t really an option, there was a lot of squawking and complaining (all the way around). It should come as a shock to no one that everyone ended up going to school, and somehow made it though.

All three kids are now picked up by the school director in a taxi, and she drops Molly and Ben off at kinder (the baby school, as Ben likes to call it), and then takes Elliott to the language school.  Rob and I follow later on foot.  It’s about a ten-minute walk, and not too bad as we are getting to know some faces in a very small town.  The man at the candy store on the corner near our house likes to practice his excellent English, and the banana man down the street always greets us with a hearty “Bueno!”

At school, we have two coffee breaks during the morning, and now that Rob and I are in different classes (we started out in the same class), we are getting private instruction. My teacher today seemed a little surprised and put out that I felt like I could work all the way through the 2nd coffee break. In fact, many of the other instructors kept knocking on our door, “You’re not going to take a break?” I wanted to say, “I think I can handle another half an hour without a break,” but of course, I can’t say that in Spanish, so there you are.   I should also mention that our day STARTS with a coffee break.  We are supposed to be there by 9:30, but class doesn’t actually start until 9:45. 

This is the rainy season in Turrialba, and yesterday afternoon was a doozy!  I have never seen rain like that before, and we live in Portland, so I thought I had seen rain.  Tropical rain is a completely different animal, though. In a house with a metal roof, you really hear the rain, too. We had a “Sound of Music” moment when the lightening and thunder started, and suddenly, all three kids were in our room because they didn’t like the sound.  It shook the house, and I couldn’t help but wonder why people who live in a place with lightening and thunder storms like that one have metal roofs.  That’s just a friendly “wonder,” and not a judgemental “suggestion.”

Every day we’re learning more about each other, and of course, Spanish.  I told Molly today that “caballo” means “horse,” and she told me, “No, Mommy!  ‘caballo’ means ‘hair.'” Close, but not quite.  I am thrilled that in just a couple days, she is picking up so much of the language.

I wish I could tell our host family how much we already adore them.  They are wonderfully patient with us, and have shown us so much kindness.  So instead I do dishes, we keep our stuff tidy (and then Sonia comes around and cleans everything up again while we’re at school) and say “Gracias!” about a million times a day.  It’s a start, at least.

8 thoughts on “The honeymoon is over

    • Thank you for explaining that! My Spanish won’t get me far enough to ask that question, or understand the response!—oh, this is Erica, by the way, commenting with Rob’s sign-in

  1. Caballo cabello … i havent used my spanish in so long! & the rain… in ecuador the kids bathed in the summer rain. I am so tickled to have these memories come back while you create yours.

  2. Oh My Goodness….. I am so proud of you all. What an adventure you on and all the memories you are going to make with each other. Traveling can be difficult but the rewards will be priceless.
    I can’t wait for the next news letter. Love all, Aunt Patty

  3. Hello you two (adults of the Vaughn clan) – so wonderful to see your updates. I am so in awe and proud of you for taking on this wonderful adventure. The growth in you and the kids is already so apparent. Looking forward to seeing more. Xoxo

  4. I love your writing style Erika it’s very engaging. I’ve been working in Santa Cruz for the last 15 months. I speak Spanish every day… mostly bad Spanish but I have a good vocabulary and it gets the job done. the boys might be interested in some of my more colorful expressions.
    I also took Spanish lessons in coaster Rica and am now passing on my secret to you: novellas. The Spanish soap operas. They speak slowly and use hand expressions and it’s really helpful for your accent .Curl up on the couch with your host mom, a big plate of Tres Leches, and get to know the characters.

  5. Hurray!
    I grew up with a metal roof (I think it is cheap actually), and I LOVE the sound of a huge rainstorm. But you are right, our rainstorms are more like a constant patter than a gigantic deluge.
    How excellent that you are learning so much! And drinking coffee so much. Your schedule sounds like when I used to work with my dad in his cabinet shop.
    The street is quiet without you guys.
    Much love!

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