I just got back from a quick trip to the grocery store, and it reminded me of many more things that I may or may not have told you before. So here's blog #2 for the day :)
1. Everything comes in bags at the grocery store. At first you might not think that strange because in the States flour, sugar, cheese, chips, etc., come in bags. While those items do come in bags, so do items like ketchup, mustard, mayonaisse, refried beans, salsa, cleaning solutions such as bleach, laundry detergent, refill handsoap, meat at the meat counter, sour cream, basically anything liquid or semi-liquid. Cons: putting on my painting clothes before cutting open the bag of bleach. Or the juice from the meat seemingly seeping out of the bag. Yuck. Pros: cut down on garbage. You can squeeze your beans right onto your tortilla, lol.
2. Kilos. The metric system is a smart idea, United States and Britain, and I don't know why you invented your own system! I have figured out how to convert kilograms into pounds for when I am at the market and to convert kilometers into miles for distance. The customary system is so well engrained in my thinking that it still is difficult for me to understand weight and distance in kilos.
3. Pay your bills at the grocery store. Yes, you read that right. I receive a piece of paper once a month for water, electricity, and phone, and I have to walk to the grocery store, get in the cashier line, show my bill, and pay in cash only. You can also pay bills at the bank or online, but I have yet to figure out the online system. Maybe someday.
4. No personal space. While standing in line at the grocery store, I could hear and feel the lady behind me breathing! She was standing so close to me that I was coaching myself not to be so ''gringo''. lol. I need space! She was actually a very outspoken tica as she nearly pushed me out of the way after I was done paying for my food, but then I still needed to pay my cell phone bill (Oh yeah, I have a cell phone now thanks to Judit!). I lost my voice this week due to a sore throat, so I rasped that I still needed to pay my bill! The cashier bent toward me and was like ''What??'' (this whole conversation in Spanish of course) and so I breathed deeper and rasped louder that I needed to pay my cell phone bill! He asked me for the phone number and I wrote it down so I wouldn't rasp-shout it at him, lol. The lady behind me was still breathing on my shoulder, and she said ''So you can't speak Spanish, huh?'' I looked at her, probably with a not-nice look on my face, and I didn´t respond. Thank goodness I have arrived at a point in my Spanish that I don´t feel like I have to prove myself every chance I get.
5. City life. Lots of traffic. Dodging cars to cross streets. Taking the bus. Palm trees. Pollution. Long lines at the ATMs. Beggars at our door. Homeless people in the streets. Street-smart dogs that look both ways before they cross the road. Three-legged dogs that have experienced a car incident and are still loving life (or limping through life). Spanish, spanish, spanish. Mountains surround the city.
6. Earthquakes. We had another minor tremor this morning. It's a part of life now to go outside as soon as I feel a tremor, no matter where I am. I was currently at home, falling asleep, and so I dosed shortly after because it wasn't a big one. When a tremor happens, I can hear the windows shake, the ground beneath me isn't stable, I have to lean on something to keep me up. If it is strong enough, things might fall off shelves and you might see the table and chairs ''dancing''. The quake today M4.7 (magnitude on the Richter scale), says the Nación newspaper. Not bad at all.
I'll probably think of more later, so stay tuned :)