An Eventful Weekend

Trip Start Jan 07, 2008
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of Mexico  ,
Monday, February 4, 2008

This weekend, which was four days long, was great.  On Thursday night, after my climbing class, I went out to eat with some of my friends here.  We ate a a restaurant called "Tacos Leal." It was really good food, as is most of the food here. The drink situation was confusing though.  I asked for water, which is fine for drinking in Monterrey.  They charged me the same price as the soft drinks.  It turns out that they don't have water there, so I ended up drinking jamaica.  It was fine, I'm just not used to eating at a place that doesn't have water.
After eating, we went to the movies.  We saw Antes de Partir (The Bucket List).  I thought it was a pretty good movie, and the tickets here only cost $5, which is cheap compared to what I'm used to. The movie was in English with Spanish subtitles.  I enjoyed it because I it helps improve my Spanish-English translation skills.  After the movie, I headed home for the night.
On Friday, I didn't do much until the afternoon.  I love not having classes on Fridays. At 3:00, I had my first meeting with my partner in the conversation club. We practiced speaking Spanish for 30 minutes, and then English for another 30 minutes.  I think it will help out a lot. She doesn't speak much English, so I was trying to explain things about the English language while speaking in Spanish. I look forward to more of these meetings.  Afterward, I met up with friends again.  We went out to eat at El Pollo Loco. One of the guys paid for everyone's dinner because had just received his first paycheck from a new job.  The "Crazy Chicken" is basically like a Mexican KFC, but a lot better.  The chicken was grilled and you it eat with tortillas and salsa.  There's also unlimited chips and salsa.  I thought it was really good.  After eating, we went to a place called the Luv Pub.  It's a little bar across the street from campus.  It was a lot different from other places I've been.  We sat on the floor--there were tons of pillows--which I thought was pretty cool. Most of the music was techno and in English, but all of the Mexicans knew all of the words.  They thought it was crazy that I didn't know the words to from my own country. The music was good, but a bit of a problem too.  I'm still learning Spanish, and loud music doesn't make comprehension any easier. It was a good time though, so I can't complain.
On Saturday, I woke up relatively early to go swimming in the lap pool on campus. The last time a swam laps was my freshman year of high school, so it was good to get back in the pool. I ate lunch at home, which was delicious as always. One of my friends here, Sen, had a birthday dinner at a Japanese restaurant at 7. About 12 of us all met up for the dinner, which was very different and good.  It was an interesting atmosphere for me.  Out of the 12, I was the only English-speaker.  There were 2 French, 5 Japanese, me, and 4 Mexicans.  All of the speak Spanish, which is good.  It's cool to be able use Spanish to communicate with people from non-Spanish-speaking countries.  They are all really nice people, and going to a Japanese restaurant with Japanese people means that you are going to eat some good food. 
On Sunday, I stayed at home the whole day.  My host family, all of whom are big NFL fans, had a superbowl party at our house.  We have a nice patio with a brick grill and plenty of room.  We brought the t.v. outside (it was about 75 degrees). Mexicans know how to have fun. We had really good burgers and carne asada, among other things. About 15 people showed up, so it was quite the superbowl party.  It was interesting though, because they don't have superbowl commercials in Mexico (and the play-by-play was in Spanish).  The Giants won, so I was really happy.
Today is a national holiday (Dia de la Constitucion).  It's basically the equivalent of Labor Day. I have a lot of homework to do, but I've been taking occasional stops to eat leftovers, so it's not too bad.  It also means that I only have 3 days of class this week. I have my first exams on Wednesday, so that will be interesting.  I'm taking international economic theory in Spanish.  I know Spanish, but not well enough to understand everything that the professor says.  Hopefully the test won't be too difficult.  I also have to give a 10-15 minutes presentation on Wednesday.  It's about the colonial history of Mexico, but it's in English, so it shouldn't be bad.  I also have to finish my student visa application this week.  I've got a lot to do, but the weekend will be here soon.  All is well in Mexico.
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