As I've mentioned a few times, I'm learning Spanish. Because I need it very very badly for Mexico, and I need it competent and communicative by August. This means that as much as I'm getting from my roommate's Spanish book slash whatever online resources I can find, I'm not getting it quickly enough. So yesterday I rethought my strategy, and decided to start watching Spanish-language television. Also known as Telemundo. Yes, that is correct, I am currently watching Spanish soap operas with names like Corazon Valiente and Rosa Diamante in the effort to speed up the learning process. And while I have no idea what's going on 95% of the time, I am pleased to at least be able to say that I am rapidly accumulating the vocabulary necessary to discuss pregnancy, affairs, and medical emergencies. Just today I've learned the words for "aggression," "compassion," "bastard," and "tramp," all of which are very useful in the right circumstances. Plus, I'm becoming very familiar with the wide spectrum of the "shocked" face that accompanies personal tragedy and scandal. Which, from what I understand, happens on average every twenty-two seconds. For crying out loud, one guy just found out his maid is his mom. Awkward. On the plus side, there's a shocked face for that.
In other news, Thanksgiving is around the corner and I have to work until six, which means I'm taking Estonian friend up on her offer to come over and make pretzels. This is the second year in a row that I'm missing out on anything resembling Thanksgiving, and I'm kind of sad. I really, really miss Thanksgiving. More than that, I miss Portuguese Thanksgiving, also known as that weird blend of Luso-American tradition that we've got going on every year. Too many people crammed into a room too small to fit them. Lots and lots of wine. My mom's cheesy mashed potatoes. Gross Portuguese green soup that is gross. Fighting with my sister for the remnant's of my mom's pie dough so we can make mini-pies. Tia's cod cakes. Not eating the aletria. When I was a child, all of these things used to make me insane, but I guess the older I get and the longer I'm away from our weird awkward culture, the more I miss it.
But at least this year I know I'll be in the States for Portuguese Christmas, and that's exciting. Too many people crammed into a room that's too small to fit them. Lots and lots of wine. My mom's cheesy mashed potatoes. Delicious Portuguese chicken soup that is delicious. Making vomiting sounds every time someone suggests I eat the octopus. Tia's cod cakes. The baby pig in avó's oven with the apple in it's mouth that is still terrifying. My mother addressing all the presents from Santa and insisting that he is real. Still not eating the aletria. Being terrified by my mother's over-sized Annalee doll collection and installing signs in front of them saying things like "I want to eat your soul." Exchanging gifts with my sister on Christmas Eve, a tradition we started back when we were too impatient to wait until Christmas morning. Jesus jokes.
I can't wait!