San Antonio Sabbatical

Weekend Fun

Posted on: December 13, 2010

Last night I attended Susie’s end-of-semester potluck party for our Spanish clinic team.  The fun began at 7:00 p.m. and didn’t end until around 12:45 a.m. this morning.  There were ten of us — Susie and her boyfriend Chris, Rosanna and her boyfriend Diego (I had Thanksgiving dinner with them), Martha, Celina, Stephanie (my ride), Gabriel, me, and Dr. Ezequiel Peña (a.k.a. Clinic Team Supervisor).  We had a great time eating food that people brought, talking, watching a little television, and playing games.  I tried a sip of the champurrado, Mexican hot chocolate made with hominy flour that is served at Christmastime (brought by Celina), and an assortment of good food — tortilla chips and spicy guacamole dip, salad, fruit, chicken, rice, flour tortilla, tamale, chocolate cake, and a Coke.  The games — as well as the company — were engaging and enjoyable.  The first one was Rainbow Jumbling Towers, a set of 48 colorful wooden blocks that are stacked high in which each player tries to remove one without causing the tower to fall.  I narrowly escaped causing a collapse; it’s a good thing I’m not an engineer.  Then we played Boxers or Briefs?, a fun adult party game (we kept it clean) in which we got to learn interesting things, some true and some funny, about each other and teased with off-the-wall answers until there was a winner — Martha, who collected six “True” chips and six “Funny” chips.  I really like this game.  Finally, we sang karaoke courtesy of YouTube lyrics.  Since I can’t sing, I had fun observing as the group sang a variety of tunes including Spanish songs, “I Swear” (All-4-One), “Bad Romance” (Lady Gaga), “Tick Tock” (Kesha), “Like a Virgin” (Madonna), “Total Eclipse of the Heart” (Bonnie Tyler), and “Eye of the Tiger” (Survivor).  It was nice to see everyone so relaxed and in a good mood after their stressful semester.  This group is such a friendly and welcoming bunch and I will really miss seeing them in class and clinic.  At the end of the night, Dr. Peña gave each of us a small gift and Celina gave me an “Alamo” t-shirt as a reminder of my time in Texas.

I squeezed in some leisure reading over the past week.  I finally read the New York Times bestseller, The Help (a novel) by Kathryn Stockett and loved it.  Also, I read Fits, Starts & Matters of the Heart: 28 True Stories of Love, Loss & Everything in Between, a book of essays by my fellow writers at Freelance Success.  This was a very good read too.  Tomorrow I’ll post a list of all of the books I’ve read this fall while on my sabbatical leave.

Christmas is quickly approaching and I’m looking forward to being with my Dad and sister in New York.  Holidays are more difficult now since we lost my Mom in 2001 to breast cancer.  Her loving presence is greatly missed and I didn’t want to conclude this blog without mentioning her since she has had a great influence on my life and would be proud of my work and travels.  I think of and pray for Mom often and she lives within my heart.

I will resume my packing and cleaning tomorrow so that I’ll be ready for Friday’s move.  Four days to go…

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