Stringing my Life Together: Purishpa takini, takishpa purini.


More travels and new horizons
2010/06/14, 07:31
Filed under: Music, Travel, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , ,

Ah, the quarter and academic school year have finally come to an end. Since the protest, life has been hectic; I performed in multiple mariachi, jiagnan sizhu (Chinese silk and bamboo music), and bluegrass performances. The rest of the time was spent sitting in front of the computer working on my thesis and final papers, writing and editing ad nauseam. Many a night have I spent, staring at the computer with glazed eyes after not having left the confines of my apartment for the last day or two.

However, in the midst of all of that, I did have a fabulous spring break trip back to Spain. Sierra and I hit two soccer games (Valencia vs. Almería, and Atlético Madrid vs. Athletic Bilbao), three Mediterranean beaches, four cities, four fútbol stadiums, and pounds of café con leche, jamón serrano, and chocolate in just a mere 9 days! The best part, by far, was meeting up with old friends from my study abroad days four years ago. I was even able to show up and surprise most of them who had no idea that I was even coming! Sierra and I also stumbled across some new friends who stayed in the hostels with us.

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Unfortunately I had to come back to reality in Los Angeles. I finished my M.A. paper just a few weeks ago and as of yesterday, graduated with an M.A. in ethnomusicology! It wasn’t until later in the evening, when I was celebrating with friends over Salvadoran tamales, hotdogs, and strawberries that I realized how special it was that I am the first person in my immediate family who has graduated with a masters. Glad I am making the family proud 🙂

Looking forward, my summer travels will send me to the land of sanjuanitos and the Inti Raymi, where I will study Kichwa in Otavalo, Ecuador. Although the Andes and the summer abroad seem so far away, I have moments when my nerves and excitement remind me that I will board a plane headed to South America in just a few weeks. I’m nervous about the home stay, since the family I stayed with in Spain was less than friendly. The idea of eating kuy freaks me out because I’ve always had cute furry rodents for pets, and when I tried to watch the Bizarre Foods episode about roasted kuy, I began sobbing and had to change the channel, even though normally, I am open about trying new foods. In Mexico, I have eaten menudo, tacos de tripa (tripe tacos) and patitas (pigs feet) without a single wince! Tune in later to find out if I build up the courage to try it!

In general, though, I am feeling positive and am highly anticipating this trip. Ever since I was in high school I have been listening to sanjuanitos and have dreamt about going to South America one day. Where I grew up in central New York (state that is!), there are barely any mountains, just rolling, green hills and flat land. The mountains in Los Angeles never cease to place me in a stupor of amazement. I quickly got over the ubiquitous palm trees out here, but every day I see the mountains I can’t stop staring at them, studying all of their fine details, like someone would for a Picasso painting. I can only imagine the awesomeness of the Andes mountains. This trip is also important to me because I will be working on developing fluency in a third language! Here’s to hoping that I will be functional in spoken Kichwa by the time I come back! I haven’t decided on how many languages I want to try to be fluent in, but I know I will be one step closer to reaching one of my lifetime goals of being multilingual!

In the interest of using as little English or Spanish as possible (myself and the members of the Kichwa class have perfected the art of Spankichwinglish), I plan to at least try to write most of my posts in Kichwa. Don’t worry though, I will include pictures whenever possible! 🙂

Kutin punchakamanmi mashikuna! Kikinkunaka sumak sumak intipachata, puriykunatapashmi charipaychik!

(Until next time everyone! Have a wonderful summer and safe travels!)

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