Thursday, July 5, 2012

Independence Day

 Although I was skeptical, Brandon's quest to make his mom's chocolate chip cookies to celebrate the 4th turned out to be pretty successful.  Despite the fact that we had no measuring spoons or cups, no mixer, no mixing bowl, no baking sheet and an oven that has very few temperature markings and no handle to open the door, or hot pads to save our hands. 
 The students all say that their Señoras only use their ovens to store things and that they never even turn them on.  I guess with so many great bakeries around there is no reason to bake something yourself.  Also, we learned that the ingredients get a little pricey. 

To kick off the holiday Brandon got up early with the girls and made pancakes.  They were from a mix so we didn't have to worry too much about the measurements and the grill pan section of our stove makes up for the weaknesses  of the oven.
 And what other way is there to celebrate America than to get fast food from Burger King.  The Burger King is further from the house but it has a much better playground.  Daisy once again hiked herself to the top with enthusiasm and then lost her guts.  Luckily this time Brandon was with me and he just hiked his skinny buns up through the labyrinth and brought her down.

 Brandon's party was a hit.  Although there were quite a few technical difficulties we finally got the movie up and running.  There were a bunch of Mexican and American students that showed up and everyone was inspired by Independence Day and the victory of mankind over aliens.  Daisy was especially enthralled with the parts that we actually let her watch.

Although we did have fun it was a little sad to miss out on the parades, races, and fireworks that make July 4th fun.  It was funny that here it was just another Wednesday.  Too bad we won't be here in September when the Mexican's celebrate their independence.  I have a feeling that it would be pretty exciting.

On the way home at around 9:00 we did find that there are a bunch of food carts that set up at night selling hamburgers and hot dogs.  If we had only known earlier.

There is one more topic that I've been wanting to mention but it doesn't seem to fit in anywhere.  I'm just going to go ahead and write about the bathrooms.  Some places have bathrooms that are just like any you'd see in the U.S. but for the most part they are a little different.  Since we were on campus for a few hours yesterday between my pregnant self and Rocky we made several trips to the ladies room.  The first thing to remember is that you have to pick up your toilet paper as you go in.  There is just one roll in the front by the sinks and if you forget to grab it you will be out of luck.  I almost forget every time but usually there is someone around that reminds me.  The second thing is that there aren't toilet seats.  This can be challenging for a number of reasons.  The third is that once you are done, instead of throwing the paper into the bowl you are supposed to put it in the garbage can.  I've found that this step is the hardest to remember.  Taking care of your business in the bathroom is something that has been practiced so many times that it can be tricky to introduce any kind of change.  Rocky always remembers and I think it is because she is still kind of new to the whole using the potty scene.  But for me, I've got 27 years of consistency fighting against me.  Each time I go it is a little easier to get things right.  To flush there is usually a foot pedal to the side of the toilet which Rocky thinks is super cool.  For the record, in our house we can flush the paper which is a luxury I now personally appreciate.  I have noticed that the public bathrooms seem to be very clean and well maintained despite some of the rumors that I had heard before coming. 

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