Harpo Jaeger dot com


I arrived in Oaxaca later yesterday afternoon after a 7-hour bus ride from Mexico City. I managed to get to my host family’s house pretty easily, although it was a bit nerve-wracking to knock on the door of the place I’ll be living for the next month, without knowing anything about them. They’ve turned out to be wonderful, though – a big family with plenty of little kids, who I’m told are the best Spanish teachers one could ask for.

The student who was staying with this family before I arrived (we overlapped by a day) remarkedthat it seemsOaxacans never sleep – it seems like there’s always some sort of celebration going on. Based on last night, I’m inclined to agree. I had an outrageously comical “first-night-in-a-new-country” experience. Since it was a Friday night, folks were out on the street pretty late, but I was exhausted, so I went to bed around 10. Pretty much as soon as I closed my door, an entire parade went by my window, complete with mariachi band and police cars. They were even shooting off fireworks in the street! And of course each time they did, every car alarm in the city would go off, and then all the dogs would start barking at the car alarms, and then parrots would start shrieking at the dogs. It was about the noisiest welcome to Oaxaca I could have asked for!

We had orientation at the ICO this morning, and I had a delicious lunch in the Zocalo, a big open pedestrian square, with a lot of shops – somewhat touristy, but really fun (and made infinitely better by the two men playing ‘”Dance the Night Away” and Coldplay’s “Clocks” on a marimba the size of my bed). I also got a chance to go inside the church of Santo Domingo, which is covered almost completely with gold leaf, and is just about the most beautiful building I’ve ever seen. <div id='gallery-7' class='gallery galleryid-2124 gallery-columns-5 gallery-size-thumbnail'>

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Tomorrow, to an archeological dig. Classes start on Monday. Vamos!