Sunday, November 7, 2010
MY MOMMA ALWAYS SAID THAT I AM A sWINNER
I apologize for not finding the time to write. My life has been pretty eventful!
I went to an 18th birthday party on the 30th of October that lasted until the 31st of October. It was Halloween themed and everyone dressed up in costumes. We did not leave the party until 7 in the morning! We danced, ate, played pool, played ping pong and in the morning, a band played. I wore my Argentina shirt that my friend Aaron bought me before I left. Then, my friend wrote “Messi” on my stomach and his number, 10, on my back with permanent marker. I wore shorts and soccer socks… not really sure what costume I was going for? Maybe just a crazy Messi fan?! Haha… anyways, it was cold outside. I gave my jacket to my new found bff, Leii, since she didn’t have a lot of clothes either. My friend, Cameron, was suppose to bring my other sweatshirt but he forgot. So… I asked to borrow his sweatshirt but he would not let me because he didn’t want to get sick again before our trip to the Patagonia. How selfish!.. Just kidding Cam! Needless to say, I got sick again! Stupid sinus infection… what makes it worse is that I had a meet the 5, 6, and 7 of November!
So how about that swim meet. Friday, before the meet… there was a little ceremony. All the teams marched in, holding their flag. Our one teammate painted our flag… it has our team name and a picture of Patrick from Spongebob with swim gear on! But, it was a memorial ceremony too. There was a picture of this girl hanging up. She died in September from falling off of a horse or at least that is what I was told. Anyways, she graduated and was studying at the university this past year. She was very special to my coach and some of my team mates because she used to swim on the team that I am swimming on now. It is hard to imagine, that just a year ago, she was swimming in the same pool that I am now and possibly even the same lane. After the ceremony, they hung her picture up behind the podium. The top 3 get medals and stand on the podium.
My team is so supportive and I adore my swim coach… he does not speak English but he picked up… yes and okay from me. He always says “OKAY” in a loud voice and smiles. I guess that I say okay a lot. I mean. he gives me a workout at practice and what am I suppose to say?! Haha. Anyways, there were teams at the meet from 4 other provinces. The one team rode 6 hours in a bus to come. But, that is normal for them here. They mix all the girls swimming the same event together regardless of age and likewise with the guys. The younger kids swim one lap but they start in the shallow and do not dive from the blocks which is opposite of how the younger kids swim back home. However, our pool does not have a deep end, both ends are shallow… haha. There are no pads in the water for backstroke… so, I always slip.
I could not choose what I wanted to swim. My coach put me in the pro-nac. category which is all 50s but 100 breast and free. I swam 100 breaststroke on Friday against aprox. 36 other girls. I was seated second but I came in first. It was a surprise to me considering it is my worst stroke. So, I was able to stand on the podium holding my team’s flag! Then, on Saturday, I swam 50 butterfly against aprox. 42 girls and came in first. I think I intimidated some of the girls because of how tall I am compared to them. They kept looking up at me like I was Hulk or something. I also swam the 100 meter freestyle and I was seated third But, I came in first. Sunday, there were 10 heats of 50 free, I was seated fourth and came in first. I got five 1st place medals! But, the odd thing is, they give only the top 3 medals but the medals are all the same. In every event, I swam against this one girl, who usually got second after me. Anyways, she would always smile at me. At the end of the meet, she called me by my name and asked if I would take a picture with her. It made me smile but I still wish I knew her name haha. I will probably switch to the fed. category the next meet where they swim longer events and there is more competition. I think my coach just wanted me to get the hang of how swim meets are ran here before he threw me into the other category. Oh... all the guys wear speedos and some of the girls wear bikinis that are for racing... odd!
I met two other exchange students from other provinces! The boys are from Hungary and Belgium! However, they came with a different exchange program. It made me happy to know that I have fellow exchange swimmers.
I am honestly surprised that I won the event that I swam Sunday morning because I thought for sure I would drown! After the meet finished on Saturday, I went to another 15th birthday party… families spend about 5,000 dollars on these parties for their children! This party was by far the best one I have went to! The funny thing is… I did not even know the girl! My friend invited me and asked the birthday girl to put me on the guest list! There were two bouncers at the door that asked for my name and thank God I was actually on the list! They rented out the WHOLE club, where the foam party was held a few weeks ago, for her birthday party. Then, they had butlers who had appetizers and a bar with endless soft drinks. Then, there were stands with hotdogs and hamburgers. Also, a beautiful cake, icecream and a table full of candy. However, we left before we had any of the sweets! I feel old going to a party for a 15 year old. But here, it is very common. However, it seems to me that the older kids go for the amazing food then leave? Because that is what my brother and I did then I did that the other night with my friend. We left and went to a club! First time here that I had a female taxi driver and she had a neck brace! After the club, we waited outside for a ride. My friend used my phone to call since she barely had any credit. But, then, converted into dollars, she spent about $4 which left me with only 1 pesos left equivalent to 25 cents. I was a a little frustrated but we needed a ride home. She got off the phone and started crying. I guess her boyfriend lied to her so she was not happy. We got a taxi so she could go to the store to buy a card to put more credit on her phone. The taxi driver was very friendly and knew of her crisis, so he let us wait in the car until we waited for her boyfriend. I got home around 5:30 in the morning and fell asleep around 6 but my alarm was set for 7:30 in the morning. I guess I woke up and shut it off? I hate when that happens… Thank God I woke up a little after 8 because I had to go to the pool for warm ups. Wishful thinking, I had two hours of sleep. I really, really need some sleep!
Tomorrow, I leave for my trip. I have to ride on a bus for 8 hours Monday night… maybe more or maybe less (I do not remember)… anyways, I get to the city that the trip is leaving from on Tuesday morning. After Tuesday, my 17 day adventure begins. I will be able to meet all the other exchange students, in Argentina, that are in the same exchange program. We are headed for the Patagonia in the south! Sadly, there are a few nights that we will have to sleep on the road. But, the other nights, I do believe we are staying in hostels? Who knows… I was so excited about traveling that I did not read the itinerary fully yet. I get to miss school too! Then, when I came home, I only have a week of school left!
I laid out the other day trying to tan. My Mama told me that I was spending too much time in the sunlight since it was around the peak sun hours. I only spent an hour outside but I told her in 5 minutes that I would go inside. My skin is burnt… she was all worried and told me that she had lotion but I told her that I did not need it. It does not hurt. My Mama is a great lady and one of the best doctors around. At my swim meet, I found out that she was the doctor that delivered these two brothers that I swim with… oh, how crazy.
I will be sure to journal on my trip so that I remember stuff for my blog! I always promise to take many pictures. Be back in 19 days… but who knows when I will have the chance to put all the information and lovely pictures on here.