Thursday, October 22, 2009

"Where have all the hours gone?"

[to be sung to the tune of "Where have all the flowers gone?] If I hadn't had yesterday's post done two days ago and set to auto-post, it never would have gotten done. Yesterday was one busy day!

Only one showed up for this week's ladies English conversation group [STILL NO NAME FOR THE GROUP]. Of the others, one was sick and one is homebound while her elderly mom is visiting. Not sure what happened to #4 who actually hasn't made it to any of the get-togethers yet but says she wants to be involved. She's the mother of triplets (8-year-old boys) so I can't imagine what else she has to do with her time.

As usual I had over prepared but that's the way I like it; my greatest fear is that we'll run out of things to do. Have I mentioned my spontaneity level is rather low?

The only 'problem' with having just one lady show up is that we had a lot of goodies left over. Shucks.

Most of Tuesday was spent preparing for the ladies thing (which also consumed my Wednesday morning) so I didn't have time to get to the garden center like I was supposed to for Spanish so I cheated and looked up the names for flowers in Spanish on the internet. I'm happy to report that many flowers are spelled the same or very similar. Pronunciation is another matter but I can handle that. Marcela said flower names are also very popular girls names here in Argentina, especially these:
Amapola (poppy)
Hortensia (hydrangea)
Margarita (daisy)

Anyway, back to yesterday: late afternoon we visited the family of a couple boys who have been playing soccer with us on weekends. Like many families here they are under a lot of stress. The mom especially is experiencing some health problems no doubt related to stress which includes being the primary care-giver of her infant grandson in addition to raising three teenagers. Yikes! Just thinking about her responsibilities makes me want to crawl under the table and curl up in a fetal position.

You'd be hard-pressed to find a family here (or the U.S.!) without pressures of some kind. But what we have to share is HOPE and it's our prayer that these families will experience just that -- hope that can only be found in God. Watching one of the teenage boys as he helped care for his nephew warmed my heart. We want these young men to know the love of their heavenly Father.

We're starting to work on the future tense in Spanish. It's not used that much. If you want to say "I am going to" or "she is going to" you don't use the future except in formal situations; rather you use the present tense of "ir" plus the infamous and elusive "a". For example, to say "I am going to the store" you would say "Voy a ir al super" or for "she is going to come in December" you say "va a venir en diciembre".

[Mini-Spanish lesson: Ir is an irregular verb that is conjugated in this manner: I - voy; you - vas; he/she/it - va; we - vamos; and they - van]

So anyway, looks like you usually use the future when you are making a conjecture or indicating the probability of something happening. For example, "Where do you think Mary is?" would use the future: "¿Dónde estará Maria?"

I kinda like the future tense. It's the easiest we've worked on so far. No matter if it's an -ar, -er, or -ir verb, the endings are uniform and tacked onto the infinitive, plus there's merely a dozen or so irregular verbs. Woot!

Only two more weeks of full-time Spanish study and then I'll go to two classes per week for the remainder of this term (two more years). I'm nervous but excited. While I still have SO FAR to go, I feel pretty good about my ability to understand about half of what is being said (unless the person talks really fast, too softly, or with a heavy accent). While my own communication remains pretty basic, I can usually get my ideas across. Most of the time. Not always. Like yesterday when I thought I was using the correct conjugation of "pedir" which means "to ask for" but what I was saying wasn't any form of that verb, rather it was the word for "passing gas". Oh yes I did.

Now that I've gotten that embarrassing tidbit out of the way, let me tell you about this morning. There's an apple breakfast cake recipe I've been wanting to try. I started putting it together at 7:30 a.m. and had most of the ingredients mixed when I realized there were only two eggs in the carton and it called for four. I was going to run to the little market a few blocks away but Ivan offered to go for me. 35 minutes later he called. Poor guy. The little store had not been open so he went to the closest chain store; it was open but they didn't have a single egg. Then he went the other direction to the next closest chain store where he was finally successful. So he was calling to see if I needed anything else while he was there.

I got the cake in the oven a little before 9 a.m. I just took it out at 10:30; I kept checking and it wasn't done, wasn't done... This oven makes me a little crazy at how long it takes to cook or bake anything. Now the cake is cooling and we sure hope it tastes good 'cause we're starving!


JonMagic said...

Oh goodness, that pedir line left me in stitches. Excellent story to start the morning. Love you

rita said...

What on earth did you say? ;)LOL
Two minor corrections or clarifications: diciembre; pedir = to ask FOR as opposed to preguntar = to ask a question.

Kim said...

To answer Rita's question I said "pedo" instead of "pidio". I wanted to say "he asked" and knew I needed to add an accented "o" on the end but forgot pedir is irregular and the "e" changes to "i" and you use "io" instead of just "o".


Sarah said...

Oh, this is fun to keep up w/ your language school and so on and so forth...I don't do spanish...but, wow...girl. THAT's just the MOST hilarious thing...passing gas! I seriously laughted OUT LOUD on that one! Also, I love the girl flower names...they're beautiful! Thanks for sharing...this is tons of fun to keep up w/ you! Soon, I'll be writing about learning German!

sara said...

so funny!!!! who did you say that to? let's hope it was just in class with people who know you!

that cake sounds great....where's the recipe?

We take so much for granted here...I can't imagine having to go to 3 different places to find eggs.

Anonymous said...

That was hilarious :) u sure have lot of fun inspite of the tight schedule

Freedom Debt Reviews

Robin @ Be Still and Know said...

Wow, my head is spinning in Spanish, thankfully with my short term memory loss it will be gone quickly!

Hope the apple cake was a success.

Just stumbles across a blog with a recipe for one with a caramel sauce

if you want to check it out.

I am slowly digging back out from being gone. I am managing to get back around to all the blog i missed while I was on vacation and while I was getting back to normal after vacation.

Sadly it is back to the normal hum drum of daily life.

15 bean soup on the stove in a few minutes, I'm off the chop onions, celery and get it on to simmer.

Have a great weekend.