27 junio 2006

Of Machetes and Coca-coleros

dear mom,
I got my first machete wound this week! I was clearing out some grass for our garden. We´re going to plant lucma and granadilla and azucenas and culin and sundry other fruits, flowers, and medicinal herbs. don´t worry... it was just a scratch, really. scarcely warrented a bandaid.

thought one:
"God made us, in other words, to love us."

"We know, however, that the image of God within us is marred and defaced. Yet it is through community that God begins to heal that image."

"We only reach our full potential as human beings in the community of the Church. And it is in this regard that our culture’s emphasis on individualism is so misdirected, because it denies a fundamental reality about what it means to be human: we are truly ourselves only in community."
-Martin M. Davis
courtesy J. Kranzusch
thought two:
when i first arrived, my head just spun trying to compare, contrast, and analyze this place and the US... culture, lexicon, arquitecture...
then i got used to it. "accustomed myself" as they say here. i just live. happy, but not overly analytically. i worry, because how many good thoughts am i missing? and with the whole blinking world being a picture waiting to happen, how many pictures am i missing by my accustomedness?
thought three:
The Administration has reviewed my record and were horrified to find my shortage of bad habits. They said, "This simply must not do," and voted unanimously (sp) to up my quota. i present the most recent additions to my bad habit list:
1) BREAD
we all know it and love it, right... holds your sandwich together... except it goes bally good with soup. and quaker. and quinoa. and coffee. and hot chocolate. and cheese. and... everything.
2) POTATOES
again, not typically the stuff bad habits are made of. but oooyyy... addictive. positively. goes with everything. and when there is a big plate of potatoes in beautiful purples and yellows complimenting the bowl of aji of rocoto (red peppers in lemon) at its side, it become a downrightly artistic experience.
3) LA COPA MUNDIAL (the world cup 2006: Germany)
by far the worst habit of them all. how did it come to this? it started with an innocent wikipedia article about the world cup and has ended with utter dissolution. we bought a map to locate the 32 often unrenowned countries that are competing. we walk around singing the dreadfully catchy theme song at the top of our lungs. (okay maybe not the top of our lungs... we have some pretty loud lungs... but it is pretty catchy.) we suspend classes when Brasil plays. (they are beautiful. it´s like a blinking dance to watch them...) ahhh futbol is LOVELY.
and the commercials...! there´s this one where this guy from 1946 is transported by a magician to Lima 2006 and pobrecito he´s wandering all over the place, scared to death. he´s looking hungrily into a pastry shop when he sees the reflection of BCP (banco de credito de Peru) in the glass. he pulls out from his suit a checkbook with the old fashioned BCP logo and goes in to find that the credit is still good! the bank teller shows him how to use the ATM card and he has such fun enjoying the goods of the 21st century with BCP credit. "BCP... good yesterday, today, and forever." it´s so nice. at the end the teller gives him a hug.
there´s another where this kid is hitchhiking... he jumps upon a big "Volvo" when it´s filling up with petrol, planning to get off at the next gas stop. except the truck keeps going and going ("look, sister...! there´s the plains of Junin, remember?" and "hey Franklin, there´s Ticllyo." spoken like true well-worn travellers of a highly centralized country. one road to lima is all you need, right?) anyway, the poor kid is in the back, looking forlornly at every service station they pass. Primax Petrol is just that good.
Then there´s the Coca-cola one... which is terrible, but funny. a catchy song about how everybody in Peru is drinking Coke (set to the same tune as a recent US pop song)... the housewives, the "unmentionables" drying on laundry lines, the ceviches, Ronald McDonald, the cds... the best part is when they say, "the Coca-coleros" and show this rotund unmistakably Peruvian man vending Coca-cola at a sporting event. you see... "cocaleros" are the farmers in the jungle who raise coca for narcotraffickers... it´s just too clever...
Then there´s the one exhorting every true Peruvian to buy more Cristal beer because with such effort they will be supporting the effort to bring Peru to the Cup four years from now. "A million hearts can´t be stopped." My comrades explain: apparently, all the national players are rich bums who party too much to become good players but whose parents buy them places on the teams. so Cristal is launching an effort to go looking throughout the provinces for the best players and then train them so that Peru can enter. i think the last time Peru made the Mundial was in the ´70s. I´m almost tempted to contribute to The Cause. plus they give you this cool little rubber bracelet in red and white if you buy 2 bottles and add a sol more. and the kids in the commercial look like they´re having such fun...!

1 Comments:

Blogger Pastor Tebbe said...

Reb,
You like trivia: It is exactly 3,138 miles (5050 kilometers)from your front door to our front door. just found that out.
You watch too much t.v. kid.
B.t.w. do you realize what "blinking" is a euphamism for?
we'll talk soon,
g.

jueves, 29 junio, 2006  

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