Wrapping Up the School Year
FINALLY it’s about that time – the end of the semester. Fortunately, at this point I only have to turn in three more projects (only one not totally completed), one homework, give one presentation, and take one final exam. At first when I realized all of these accomplishments, I was relieved! I felt like all of my hard work had finally paid off. But the feeling immediately following that was that of anxiety. I really really REALLY do not want to leave all the new friends that I’ve made up to this point in time.
I feel like everything is finally coming together, and right when that’s happening, I have to leave! I finally have a grip on Spanish, have a good set of both Peruvian and IFSA of friends, and feel like I can live comfortably in Lima – all of which were huge challenges of me until this past month or so. But it’s okay – I feel grateful for this experience more than anything. I’ve made memories that I’ll be able to recall and appreciate forever
In between finishing all of my assignments, I still found the time to get myself out of the books and have fun! There are a few events in particular that were my favorite.
FÚTBOL: ALIANZA LIMA V. SPORTING CRISTAL
Thanks to my friend’s host family, we got tickets to a huge rivalry game at el Estadio Nacional to watch Alianza play Cristal, both of which are teams from Lima. Cristal has first place in their league while Alianza is sitting in second. So, naturally, the stadium was full. And of course a South American fútbol experience isn’t complete without purchasing a team’s official jersey (we chose Alianza) and sitting in the fan section of the stadium (for Alianza, it was the north end). The energy in the stadium both before and during the game was incredible! I’ve never experienced such excitement or seen such fan dedication in the U.S. before, but this level of enthusiasm is common for fútbol fans in Latin America. Songs were constantly being sung/chanted, confetti constantly being thrown up into the air, and some fights almost broke out amongst Alianza fans when they were down and tensions were high. I could not have asked for a more authentic sporting event to attend
Lali, our resident director, purchased tickets for the group to see a play called “La Cautiva,” a story about a young teenage girl who dies during the 80’s in Lima, a time of violence that was a result of the clash between terrorist group El Sendero Luminoso and the Peruvian government. This girl’s corpse was left in the morgue to be sexually abused by the Peruvian government before her decay. However, she is still alive only in the mind of a man working at the morgue. This causes him to develop feelings for her and protect her, which leads to crazy events. Anyway, the point is that for a play with a theme this strong, even stronger actors are needed. They could not have been more on point with choosing the appropriate actors for this show – they were incredible! At points some had to be fully nude, jump around wildly on stage, and speak long, emotional monologues. I am very impressed with the performance and Peruvian theater to say the least.
LA CASA DE PANCHITA
This week was my last at LCP working with the girls. It feels bittersweet leaving them – even though there is a group of new girls every week, I’ve gotten to know a few of the girls that have come multiple times. I will definitely miss playing with them at the park and discussing family, friends, and American music Those young girls are so innocent and vulnerable but truly opened up to the volunteers at LCP so easily due to LCP’s environment of trust and safety. I also met some amazing volunteers from around the world, such as Germany, Luxemburg, and Finland. I have gotten to know these women too and will never forget the stories and times we shared together. I hope to continue this kind of volunteer work in the future, it’s incredibly rewarding!
As things are wrapping up, I realize there are a lot of things that I haven’t yet done that I’m looking forward to!
– Thanksgiving dinner potluck with the IFSA family
– dinner and folklore dancing at La Candeleria
– Hunger Games 3 in theaters!!!
– final dinner with host families
– Final exams…kind of haha
Pictures attached are from the Alianza soccer game, La Cautiva play, and LCP!