I think I was a lot more tired after my trip than I'd realized. I haven't gotten up before 1:30pm ONCE this week. (I know, start hurling the tomatoes, I deserve it) But the exhaustion manifested in really weird ways. The first day back, I felt totally fine. I went to class, and even started preparing last-minute presentations about Earth Day and the American school system. But by Wednesday, I felt this exhaustion orb around me. Have you ever felt that before? I wasn't hungry, but I felt like I hadn't eaten in days. I was constantly drinking water, but constantly feeling dehydrated. I couldn't focus. It was so weird. The paranoid Iranian in me feared that the Dengue had gotten me. (Have I mentioned that my province has recently become infested with Dengue Fever? Don't let this curb your plans to visit!!) But a few days of excessive sleep pulled me back into reality.
Lots of teaching this week, and I'm really starting to love being in front of a classroom. This week we talked a lot about environmental issues, and what we can do to combat them. (YIPPEEE!!) Sadly. the outlook of Tucumanos is pretty bleak. There is no recycling here, and most people use gallons and gallons of water everyday to hose down their sidewalks. But at least we got the discussion started. I'm going to try to encourage my family to start using more canvas bags, and to take advantage of the fact that bodegas here collect used glass bottles. Not sure what else to do. Any ideas?
This week I also had a mini brain meltdown when I realized that I didn't have any concrete projects lined up here. I think I'm calmed now, but I really freaks me out how quickly I can get overwhelmed without wanting to do so much, and not actually doing anything. This "chill out" lesson is going to be hard to accept. I'm not used to having all this time to reflect. And sleep.
I started my puppetry class this week! Just wait until you see my skills with a toilet paper roll. Pixar is totally going to be knocking down my door. Sheeeeyit. My professor is adorable. Imagine an elderly lady with a lot of make up and sass slightly tripping while demonstrating how to make two puppets fight and storm off. I also continued following the adult acting classes taught by my adopted buddies Alejandro and Diego. It still boggles my mind how regardless of how much I continue to get impassioned about real-world causes, theater still seems to be the only thing to really light me up. I'm such a sucker for amplified emotion.
On Friday night, I cooked kabobs with fellow Fulbrighter Eric, and my new friend Alexis. There was a downpour of rain, and the streets flooded. Ah rain. Sigh. Smile. We are so lucky to have rain, aren't we? Hm.
Last night, I caught up with my German friend Sandra, who I met in Bariloche. We chatted for all of 20 minutes while she hurried to a play, and then I downed a bottle of beer and a plate of hummus alone. (it was nice, I promise) Then, I joined Alexis and some of his friends for my FIRST TUCUMAN CLUB EXPERIENCE. Bit less eventful than I'd imagined, but it was fun. Let me set the scene:
A long, seemingly middle-of-nowhere street flooded with adolescents. Pushed through some door by my new friends, I am immediately consumed by Reggaeton, slick Tucuman haircuts, catcalls (to the surrounding gaggles of girl parties), strobe lights, and neon...a lot of neon. There were several rooms, ranging in taste from electronica to "room where girls in thongs compete to be labeled hottest/best at bending while jiggling ass". I felt ancient. Everyone seemed to be in their teens, and the focus was easily "HOOKUP". Sorry folks, no news on my end, but I can assure you that many a teen succumbed to deep, sort-of-gross, seemingly painful bouts of making out against a wall. There was also the late-night appearance of a team of dancing floggers, who make there appearance known with there signature bop-and-jump dance that I can only compare to the mosh pit at an electronica concert. I stayed until 4, when all clubs close, and then was swiftly pushed (literally) by friendly police into the streets. After wandering, we ended up at the house of my new Peruvian gal pal Rocio, where my crew and I listened to Britney Spears and talked about movies. I got home at 730, then woke up at 1 to get ready for our family lunch.
I don't think this was a very structured post. Sorry ya'll. Maybe I'm still feeling the snoozies from my trip. Or maybe I'm going on 5 hours of sleep. I will post photos soooooooN!