My creative writing juices just aren't flowing today, but I wanted to check back in with you and tell you two things.
1. I had a wonderful weekend. I traveled with some of the church members to a nearby city, Joao Pessoa, for a youth retreat. (Here, 'youth' actually includes anyone between the ages of like 11 and 25. I count.) They church there did an incredible job with the retreat, and I hope I'm around next year to go again! :) Like a true Carpenter, I forgot my camera and therefore missed out on some pretty great pictures of sunsets, friends, and the bathrooms without doors (just kidding, I wouldn't take a picture of that,) but hopefully I will get some of the ones my friends took and upload them later. I made a new friend, an American girl who has been living in a city outside Recife as an AIM worker for 2 years, and really enjoyed getting to talk with her and share our experiences. I am in the infancy of my internship and she is at the end, so it was good to have someone to talk to who really understood where I am coming from and was able to offer me insight and little inspiration for where I am headed. We were shy to talk to each other at first because I thought she was a missionary kid, and therefore had really good Portuguese and maybe didn't claim the US so much and wouldn't want to talk to me, and she was afraid to talk to me for the same reason. We ended up playing Uno together on Saturday evening and I wasn't saying a word in Portuguese, afraid of speaking incorrectly and with an accent in front of her. Turns out she was doing the same thing, afraid that I would judge her Portuguese. :) It was so funny when we realized that we had had the same misconceptions about each other and it had prevented us from talking earlier! She also told me that up until we talked, she and everyone else at the retreat had been trying to decide if I was American or Brasilian (rather than actually talking to me or any of my friends and finding out, which I also find hilarious. I'm like a "blonde" haired blue eyed tiny monster here.) She said they had come to the conclusion that I was Brasilian, which is exciting for me, but also explains why I got stared at a lot...again.
2. My brother in law whipped up an amazing newsletter for me to send out to my supporters, and I want to brag on him for it. I had written something out to send to supporters who aren't on my email list, and asked him if he would be able to format it to make it entertaining to look at. What he came up with was about 6 gazillion times better than what I had even been hoping for, let alone expecting. It was only going to go through the mail to a handful of people, but it looks so cool that I think I want to email it, too. So if you're on the email list...be expecting something soon. And if you're not on the email list...leave a comment and ask to be. Or email me at my last name dot my first name (cris) at gmail dot com.
Have a great Monday! I'm sure I'll be back soon...