Wednesday, February 8, 2012


Rivalidad: Rivalry.

Full disclosure: this is my fourth attempt at this particular blog entry.

I’m not sure what I want this blog to be. I’ve read plenty of study abroad blogs that I thought were just dreadful; a blog has to be relevant to the readers and put things in context. For instance, though I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about the FSLN in the past couple of days, but the context of that is too complicated to blog about just yet.

So I could list a few of the things I’ve done in the past few days, but it feels strange to simply share what I’m doing and where I’m going.

My study abroad advisor warned us at orientation that we would go through an emotional cycle throughout our trips filled with highs and lows, eventually leveling off. But so far, every day I have those highs and lows.

I recently moved into my homestay after a few days in a hotel with my other students. It’s quite the experience. My parents are just lovely. They’re a couple in their mid 40s who have hosted many students before me, and I love that they call me their daughter. And although the language barrier is very present and often very awkward, they are very understanding of my level and are very patient in conversation. I also have a host brother who is my age.

Perhaps the highlight of my homestay, however, is my wonderful, wonderful set of furry siblings. I have two dogs. Nikki, the Pit bull puppy, is a little crazy. She’s so full of energy all the time, and is at times too much for me. But Pece is exactly what I need when I’m feeling overwhelmed: this little yappy dog is a source of unconditional love regardless of the langue I speak.

Although today, I’ve been more homesick than usual.

Facebook and Twitter are aflutter with my fellow students excitement of the Duke-UNC game. No one in my study abroad is from the south, or even from another big basketball school. I’ve tried explaining to them how close this rivalry is and reading them excerpts from Ian Williams’ famous column, “Why I hate Duke,” But it’s hard to understand until you’ve breathed the Carolina air.

I pretty much don’t have Internet access after 8 p.m. here, so I don’t know if I’ll be able to watch the game or even check the score. So if you are in North Carolina, don’t take tonight for granted. I hope I can celebrate a victory, but if I do, it seems I’ll be rushing the city with no street names by myself.

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