So it's official. I've decided to stay in Paraguay. Sorry to all of those who thought that I had a chance of coming home early. Why is this? Because I'm in love with Paraguay. I'm in love with the people, the culture... and the dog. (Her name is Lorenza.)
I'm also becoming more comfortable in my house. I've found a place to read, which makes me able to officially dub this place comfortable. My reading spot, (much to the dismay of my host parents) is on the roof of the house.

Being the only 'foriegner' in my school, I also find my self surrounded by people who want to know more about me. I'm making new friends daily, and speaking more spanish. However, I have not forgotten my fellow Americans here in Paraguay, so friday night I had an AFS party, celebrating our time here.
So, yeah. I'm staying.

Wow, I've only been in Paraguay for 2,5 weeks, but somehow, it feels longer. During orientation, AFS gives us a ton of information, including some about the 'emotional rollercoaster'. This is not a ride at Six Flags, however, it is the wave of emotions that is typical for an AFSer, such as myself. For example, in about three months, I am supposed to be super homesick, calling my parents everyday, whining about how much I miss my family, my home, and America in general. Afterwards, I should experiance a wonderful high, being blissful in the fact that I can finnally understand the native language. That's something to look foreward to... And finnally, just before I go I should be sad again, not wanting to leave. But somehow, I seem to have already experienced this.
Every day, I relish (and sometimes find it hard to accept) the fact that I'm in Paraguay, 5500 miles from home. I'm getting exactly what I paid for, in a literal sense. Daily I have school and spanish lessons, but in the rare times I am alone, my thoughts only my own, I wish to be home again. I brought my pillow with me to remind me of home, but sadly, it has lost the familiar musky scent of my bed. It now smells like the bottom of my suitcase, and a new aroma from this place I call home. I look outside my window and see nature as I do at home, but the friendly maple has been replaced by a palm tree. Sometimes I wonder why I came here, but moments later I'm answered by something/someone Paraguayan.
But as always, I try to look on the bright side of life. Whenever I feel sad, I just think 'Hey, I'm in Paraguay. How awesome is that? How many people can say they've been to Paraguay, for an entire year?' Not many, I'm sure. I have more things to be happy about than to worry about, so never fear. I'll be my normal, cheerful self sometime soon. I just have to wait for my cold to go away.

Awesome aspects of Paraguay...

The McDonalds delivery man!

(There´s more, by the way. This is like, maybe, a fourth of the whole house.)
My gigantic house!

But most of all...

New friends.
Ok people, I know that that kind of mushy, touchy-feely kind of writing isn´t me, but I couldn´t resist. Sorry.


¿Que tál, Uds.?
(Wazzup, peeps?)

So I´m now just beginning to fall into the rythm of the Paraguayan lifestyle. Everybody here is so laid back, it´s scary sometimes. On Sundays (when the maid, cook, and driver are off) the family and I are left to fend for ourselves. So what did we do? I´ll put it this way: I slept in until noon, and I was the first person up. The day didn´t start until around 3:00, and even then we were just going shopping. One of Jor´s friends needed to buy something, so we tagged along. But afterwards, we went to church. What I was expecting was this humungo Roman-Catholic cathedral, but what I got was mass outside!! It´s the dead of winter here right now and I was wearing a t-shirt and jeans. (Everybody else was in jackets and layers!!)
But today is another day, and the help is back, so all will get back to normal. I´m not sure yet when I´m supposed to start school, but I do know that my Spanish lessons start today.


First days..

So I made it, people! I´m still alive and well, and at casa de Perez. My plane flight was very long and I went 40 hrs. without sleep. But after orientation, my host family came and picked me up, and now I´m at my new house! This place is HUGE, and it´s all a bit overwhelming. Of course, everybody here speaks Spanish, but it´s nice that my host family speaks a little English. The English-speaking ends once I start my Spanish lessons, but hey, it´s ok.
I promise to keep writing, even though I´m REALLY busy.