Sunday, October 28, 2012

CR language training, week 4

Monday started off with our Spanish lessons, as usual, but we’d scheduled 2 Skype sessions in the afternoon. We Skyped with daughter Erica and later with missions candidate, Courtney. Skype is a wonderful thing! It’s so good to talk almost-in-person with our favorite people! We are continuing to appreciate technology and its capabilities, as we also are watching the Cardinals or the Presidential debates online (however, we had voted early, the day before we came here).

Sunday, October 21, 2012

CR language training, week 3

Monday was a holiday, so our lessons this week were a little mixed up. No problem, we’re flexible!  And along with our lessons, we got to do a few other fun things too!

Tuesday was our field trip day this week, changed so we could attend a midday concert at the National Theater of San Jose, Costa Rica.  We hurried to the front gate of the campus and to the bus stop, riding to a bus stop farther than our usual park, so we would be closer to the theater. Gaby was concerned that we might be late or that the tickets might be gone; after exiting the bus, we had a hard time keeping up with her!  But we arrived before the start, bought tickets ($2 each!) and took our seats; the theater was full!  The stage was set with 16 chairs and several short music stands.  In a few
minutes, out came 16 young men with their acoustic guitars, all students at the University of Costa Rica. One student stood and plucked some notes for tuning… their conductor came onstage. They became silent… and the concert began! The group performed 5 numbers (and later, an encore), all quite complex with 2 or 3 men playing each part, like an orchestra!  If you closed your eyes, you’d have been sure that there were several more instruments there as well – a drum, a harp, a viola… extraordinary! We thoroughly enjoyed this 30 minutes or so of spellbinding music, totally professional quality!  Dan recorded it on his cell phone, so we can experience it more than once! It was worth so much more than the ticket price!   You can download and listen also, follow this link to all 6 tunes + a video he created - Guitar Concert link.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

CR language training, week 2

Dan and I had decided over the weekend that we really needed to get moving, literally! So we got up a few minutes earlier on Monday and walked around the campus, up to the front gate and back – twice!  The sun comes up here, over the mountain, at about 5:40, so you can just imagine how early the folks on the east side of the mountain see the sun!

We attended our Spanish classes as usual (Mondays, I have a 2-hour class and Dan has two 2-hour classes).  I could tell you about the verb tenses we’re studying… but I’ll enjoy more telling you about our Canadian Thanksgiving dinner that evening! Because the Kuceys were missing their friends and family this time of year, it was decided that we’d join the missionaries and all celebrate Canadian Thanksgiving. We had divided up parts of the meal in a discussion last week and I was to make the mashed potatoes. I’ve never made mashed potatoes without a mixer before, but they turned out just fine and were a great accompaniment to the “turkey” (really chicken this time) and carrots and stuffing at the Tooleys’ home.  (Dan and I had found a bag of almonds at a grocery store, so I also made sugar-spiced almonds to share… mmm!) We’ll get to share another missionary Thanksgiving in November in Argentina, but this one was unique, sharing a meal and our thankful thoughts and prayers with these special friends.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

CR language training, week 1

Tuesday, after we each had a 2-hour class, then lunch, then my second 2-hour class, we were planning to walk to the Pali grocery store by ourselves to fill in some gaps in our pantry supplies, but our teacher Gaby was going that way and was willing to drive us to the store and we’d walk home. I had finished the shawl I had spent the last few weeks knitting for her and decided this was the time to give it to her.  I had taken some photos of it earlier, to document the project… Gaby brought her car over from the classroom parking and we asked her in for a minute and gave her the shawl. Her reaction was predictable, as she’s always muy enthusiastic, but I was thrilled that she appreciated the fancy pattern and the hours it had taken to complete! Dan took a photo of us together before she drove us to the store. And thankfully, it didn’t rain on us on the walk home!

Monday, October 1, 2012

Leaving again (2012)

Well, here we are, beginning another extended time away from our home in the US.  This has been a busy time since our last post.  Late spring was filled with obligations in various areas across the US.  In July we participated in 3 regional youth events.  These were all related to our continuing involvement with our denomination's Bible Quiz Ministry.  We had the privilege of being at: 1) the US national Quiz event at Olivet Nazarene University, near Chicago; 2) the MesoAmerica regional youth conference in Panama City, Panama; 3) the South America (SAM) regional youth conference in Cali, Colombia. Soon, we hope to have another set of photos to show a little of our summer.

August and September, we enjoyed staying home in St. Louis and reconnecting with our home church and neighbors.  At the end of September, we left for "immersion" language training in Costa Rica for the whole month of October.  In November, we will welcome a team of volunteers from our home district with whom we will join for a 2-week work project here in Costa Rica.  When the team returns to the US, we will go on to Argentina for another 5-month assignment there.  This brings us to where we are now.