Friday, August 17, 2007

It´s All Good

So that no one reads the last posts and worries. Yesterday was dreary and overcast. I was licking my wounds and indulging in some first class melancholy. I´m much more like my normal self today. I organized "My Documents" and my flash drive. I thought to lighten the mood, I should post some pictures, but blogger didn´t oblige me in this.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Cinematic Moments

In English first...
I had a fight with a friend, having to do more with our own personal demons leaking through our respective veneers than any real conflict or tension between us. Us both being at the wrong place at the wrong time, etc. But, like bruising, dignity-taking fights do, it got me thinking. About my mental health and such. My ways of depending on people around me for attention and company and how it’s so much easier for me to subsume myself in the lives and dramas of others than it is for me to focus on my own solitude, or to do something constructive about it. And here it’s even trickier, because I’m here for such a comparatively short time, so my whole life here has this temporary feel to it. Buying furniture or doing all the things that one can to make a love affair materialize seems like an unnecessary and wasteful investment.

But it’s dangerous because one year in, I have suddenly found myself without any life of my own. The last few weeks, I have had the sense that rather than living a life here, I am more of a movie goer, watching all the people around me, among my friends, in my various locales of work, between the Peace Corps and the rest of the world. And sometimes the feeling of being by myself in my house or in a party becomes almost intolerable. But it backfires to be the rock for someone else, as a solution to this, because eventually it happens that that person much to busy with their own emotions to be your rock, and you’re left spluttering and speechless at how someone could be so unkind. Although of course you know, its never as simple as good and bad with friends.

Cuenca’s orientation around extended family networks which take priority over everything else only adds to this sense of watching everything from the outside.

I often find myself wishing I was a fiction writer here, because I have watched so many things happen that are rich with human drama, meaning, cultural conflict, and insight into the silly and mostly ineffective world of development, if I were more of writer, I could write the new great american novel. But, I’m only a lowly blogger, so the novel will have to wait for someone else.

En español, para mi co-blogger estimado
Tuve una pelea con un amigo, que tenía más que ver nuestros demonios personales saliendo que con un conflicto o tensión verdadero entre nosotros. Digamos que estábamos en el lugar equivocado al tiempo equivocado. Pero, las peleas que se magullan y sacan su dignidad, también se hacen pensar, en este caso sobre mi salud mental y cosas así. Es mucho más fácil involucrarme en las vidas y los dramas de las otras que enfocarme en mi propia soledad o hacer algo constructivo sobre el mismo. Y viviendo acá, es peor: comprar muebles o hacer algunos de las cosas que una persona se puede hacer para hacer aparecer una relación de amor parecen como una inversión innecesaria y gastosa.

Pero es peligroso porque con un año acá, me encontró en un sentido sin mi vida propia. Las últimas semanas, tenía el sentido que soy una visitadora al cinema, mirando todo las personas, al dentro de mis amigos, en mis ámbitos de trabajo, entre le Cuerpo de Paz y el resto del mundo. De vez en cuando, el sentido de ser sola en mi casa o en una fiesta vuelve a ser insoportable. Pero es contraproducente, a veces de ser la piedra para otro persona, como solucion a la soledad. Eventualmente yo me encuentro en un momento en que el o ella está mucho demasiado ocupado con su propias emociones de ser mi piedra también. Y se me dejó sin palabras, preguntando como alguien puede ser tan
mal conmigo. Aunque yo se que nunca es tan blanco o negro quien es lo bueno o malo en un amistad.

El hecho que Cuenca está completamente orientada por la familia extendida solo añade a este sentido de mirar al todo del afuera.

Muchas veces acá, quisiera ser una novelista, por que he visto tantas cosas lleno de drama humano, significado, conflicto cultural, y discernimiento en el mundo, un poco tonto de desarrollo. Si fuera un gran escritor, podría producir el gran novela americano. Pero solo soy una blogger sencilla entonces esta cuenta tendrá que esperar otra persona.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

The Dozens

I watched some of the Nutty Professor tonight, or was it the Nutty Professor II? (It had Dave Chappelle and Jada Pinkett-Smith.) It totally cracked me up and made me think maybe I was a little homesick for the States. Nobody makes jokes about anyone´s mama in Ecuador.

Thursday, August 09, 2007


Yes, like he said, Pablo and I are drinking beer and he is learning to manage the magical technological interface of Blogger. And, as I said to him, whatever it is that he cannot tell me for four months will have most certainly changed fifteen thousand times before he actually gets around to telling me, so fine. No answers. Just cryptic comments and pleas to "please not ask any more questions." Fine. Provides suspense.

And now I realize we are exposing the WHOLE ENTIRE WORLD to our old middle aged married couple dynamic. Hopefully it will be entertaining for those of you who can pick through the Spanish and English.

On another front, here´s the top 5 things about the visit of Robert McCluer Calhoon to Cuenca, Ecuador:

1) How he loved Lucinda Williams, Live at the Fillmore so much he wanted to listen to it twice in a row.

2) How he related to all my friends by speaking about me as if I was still 2, 5, 11, and 19, and it made them like me more

3) How he helped me plan a dinner party, soup to nuts, a relatively spectacular success. I didn´t really have soup or nuts. It´s an expression.

4) How everything was described in superlatives. The best examples of Cañari and Incan archeology and 18th century architecture. The best Italian food. The richest coffee. The most interesting tea. The best banana bread. Etc.

5) That I got to dance with him at a party I took him to, and that he let me lead.

Thanks, Pop.

¿Ciudad chica o pueblo grande?

Hoy es la madrugada del jueves 9 de agosto del 2007. Estoy aquí, en mi casa, con mi amiga Claudia que no deja de hacer tengo respuestas.... más bien sí las tengo pero le pedí que espere hasta diciembre... pero ¿Cómo haces esperar a una mujer 4 meses? Mala idea... jamás debí abrir la boca...
Yo soy el Chilenito... sí, el mismo... del que Claudia les ha comentado en sus escritos antes... Acá estamos, tomando cerveza, cocinando y conversando mucho...
La idea de mi participación en este blog es que les cuente algo... algo sobre como es la vida acá en Cuenca para nosotros los extranjeros.... podría decirles muchas cosas... pero ahora solo puedo decir una cosa... "no hay lugar como el hogar" donde sea, menos acá !POR FAVOR¡¡¡¡¡¡
Besitos a Charisse, !QUE GUAPA ESTA CHICA¡¡¡¡¡ dueña de una sonrisa precioso y un sentido del humor increíble....
Luego, cuando estemos menos borrachos podré contarles como es vivir en este gran pueblo para nosotros... solo les garantizo... no es nada fácil...