Sarah, Hopefully

Monday, November 29, 2004

Pickshaz

I posted a few of my digital pictures from Mexico... mainly the best of the people shots, so you have faces to put with all the names I've been spouting for months! They're kind of in reverse chronological order as to when I took them, but they're actually in a pretty decent order for you to view them... so, whatever. They're all captioned. I may post more later as I get my regular film rolls developed... we'll see. Enjoy!


3/4 of my host family. My host father, the younger daughter Geni, and my host mother. Posted by Hello


Emgy (M.G.), the older daughter in my host family. Posted by Hello


Tico, me, and Pacsun (Paxo) at the Internet place I frequented. Tico is the owner, Pacsun is the guy who took me out for tacos. Nice guys.  Posted by Hello


The gang who went out to lunch to celebrate my leaving on Friday. In back are Alfonso, Gabe, me, Bebe, and Esteban. In front are Emily and Isabel.  Posted by Hello


Gabe! Posted by Hello


Thanksgiving! Eric, Case (in back), Jen Gomez, me, Gabe, and Kelly Posted by Hello


Alyssa, me, and James at James' goodbye party... about 5 minutes before I realized I had been robbed. At least we all look happy then, right?  Posted by Hello


Alfonso and Katie and Katie's box of Nerds. Posted by Hello


My room in Mexico. My bed is on the left, duh. Hooray for pink. :P Posted by Hello


This is me on top of the Pyramid of the Sun.  Posted by Hello


Eric, Alyssa, Tim, and Mateo on top of the pyramid of the sun. Tim and Eric bought cigars to smoke in celebration of their accomplishment, but you can't see Eric's in this photo. Posted by Hello


This is Eric, me, Alyssa, Mateo, and Euleta at the pyramids in Mexico City.  Posted by Hello

Sunday, November 28, 2004

Grandpa Garlow died about 2:30 last night. There is going to be a visitation on Tuesday and the funeral on Wednesday. My dad is at the funeral home with his siblings right now making the arrangements, and then we are going to go home for a couple of days. I am just so glad that I came home when I did... I think it was meant to be.

Thanks everybody for your support.

Saturday, November 27, 2004

Just in time

I was meant to come home early. I am positive of that now.

Last night I was up until 2 am packing. I slept until 3:45. The taxi came at 4:30, I was at the airport by 5, and by 5:30 I was all ready to board my 7:10 flight. I ate a bagel and cream cheese on the airplane and drank REAL orange juice, went through customs and such at the Houston airport, and almost missed my flight to northwest Arkansas. I slept on the second plane, and when I saw my parents in the airport we all cried. We ate lunch at Applebee's and I had a really good steak.

We drove an hour north to Neosho, Missouri, to the hospital there. My dad had warned me of what to expect. My grandfather had not been very responsive to people over the last couple of days. He isn't talking anymore. He lies in bed wearing almost nothing because he keeps getting fevers that overheat him. There is lots of family in and out all the time. My Aunt Jackie is a nurse and she has been by his side almost constantly, making sure he gets what he needs and explaining everything to the rest of the family. My grandma is always there. My other aunts are in and out, battling off and on spouts of emotion. Everyone is tired. No one has had a full night's sleep in a few days. They just catch a few hours when they can... no one wants to risk missing the last moments.

This man... A husband, a father, a stepfather, a grandfather, a great grandfather... he is dying. From one man have come so many children, so many babies, so much joy and laughter and love. I love this family so much... and every one of us can be traced back to him. Grandpa Rooster. How can I say goodbye? How can I bear to see him so weak, in so much pain, so close to the end? But I do it.

I said hi to him, but didn't get much response. Grandma told him how I had come back from Mexico to see him... I kissed him on his bald head and held his hand for a while. More family came... I went into an extra room the the hospital has provided to the family and took a couple of hours of naptime. My mom bought me a real coke and some real cheese doritos... I went back into his room. More people were there... more aunts and uncles and cousins. I went over to speak to him again. Grandma said that he was really seeing people, so I put my face down right next to his and told him how much I loved him and how happy I was to see him. He WINKED at me. Grandpa's wink. The same wink my dad gives. Grandma told him again how I came back from Mexico this morning just to see him. And then... something amazing happened. He raised his free arm and gave me a hug. More response than he has shown in two days. To me.

Aaaah... so many tears today. So many prayers... so many stories. We all know this is the end... we are all waiting. My mom and I are here at my aunt's house to sleep, but my dad, who already looks exhausted, is back at the hospital... waiting.

It was worth it. It was worth all the rushing around this week, getting no sleep, having a headache all morning, sitting in the hospital eating pizza and talking to relatives who look half like zombies. I am so glad that I came home. He isn't going to last much longer. Most likely not another week. I needed to come home. Getting that hug from him... having him be so happy that I was there... it makes it worth all the trouble.

One of the greatest and most important men in my life is dying... but I am here. I am where I need to be.

Friday, November 26, 2004

11 hours and counting

In about 11 hours, a taxi will be arriving at my house to pick me up. Thirty minutes later I will be at the Guadalajara airport. Two hours later, God willing, I will be on a plane headed to the United States. By noon I will be reunited with my parents at XNA in Fayetteville, Arkansas.

Holy crap. I am coming home!!! It still hasn´t sunk in.

Last night I attended a Thanksgiving dinner with over 20 people. It was so good... all these UAG students chipped in. We had tons of chicken, mashed potatoes, a big pot full of stuffing, gravy, vegetables, tons of bread and cakes for dessert... it was just this amazing time of friendship and picture taking and wishing we were with our families... but it was heartwarming that we all got together to make Thanksgiving a little brighter for one another, right? I enjoyed it. :)

Today was my last day of school! Aaah! I took my tests and they were super easy. After school I went out to lunch with a bunch of friends at this italian restaurant in Las Galerias. It was really nice... everything has been really nice. I am coming HOME!

OH! I almost forgot! I finally got the package my sister sent me!!! Just in the nick of time. It was really amazing. I was totally excited. :) I now have a book to read on the airplane. Aaaaaaaah! This is so... mind boggling. I need to PACK.

This is my final entry from the lovely land of 78 degree Mexico... palm trees, oranges, tacos, tamales (did you know that the singular of tameles is NOT tamale? no... it is tamál! Crazy!). Tomorrow tomorrow tomorrow in the USA! I am babbling in excitement. EEEEEEEEEEEEE!

I am so excited to see you all!!!!!!!!!

I am coming home!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, November 24, 2004

Shop til you drop

Okay, I guess I can let the cat out of the bag now... I`m coming home early! A week early, in fact. I fly out of the Guadalajara airport on saturday morning at 7:10am. Very early! But that`s okay. I will get to XNA in Arkansas by noon, where my parents will pick me up and take me to see my grandpa, who is in the hospital. It`s only about an hour from the airport to where my grandparents live, so... it`s good. It`s such a huge relief to be coming home. I am taking tests in my classes on Friday to finish out my semester and then I will be done.

Today I went shopping! I finally have gifts for people!! I spent a rediculous amount of money, but that`s okay. I got some pretty nifty things at good prices, so... hooray. All of my priority purchases are covered, and a good number of secondary ones, too. ;) Of course, I couldn`t get something for everyone that I adore, but I did my best... and besides, having me back in the country is gift enough, right? ;)

Tonight I am going to the movies for one last time... tomorrow evening there is a big group of people throwing a thanksgiving dinner (not the one that was going to be at Alfonso`s house, thankfully) so that should be fun... and I will be packing like crazy for the next couple of days, I am sure!

Holy crap. I will be home in 3 days!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Okay, for those of you who don`t read comments, here is the FABULOUS story that William left me on my last post. In case you get confused, he references all these random comments that he left on the first few entries of my Open Diary long after they were written. Anyways... enjoy. I laughed out loud.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


It was a warm afternoon as Sarah walked down the streets of Guadelajara. The fall temperatures were a nice break from the constant summer heat, but something wasn't quite right. Sarah felt more than a little warm. In fact, she had a fever.

She sighed a lonely sigh. She really did not want to see the doctor again. It would be the fifth time she'd been to see the doctor since she'd arrived in Mexico. She hadn't expected to have so many health-related problems, but something kept coming up right after the next. First, the mysterious food poisoning, then the mysterious injury she had received in her sleep. Not to mention her necklace had been stolen by a construction worker.

She walked into the doctor's office."Your name?" asked the secretary. Except, of course, she asked it in Spanish, since she was in Mexico.

"Sarah," she replied. Except of course, in Spanish.

The secretary was about to tell Sarah to take a seat (in Spanish) but before the words were out of her mouth, the door swung wide open, the doctor smiling behind his clipboard."I'm ready to see you, Sarah," he said. Except this time, it was in English.

"So I understand you have a fever..." he nodded, his eyes looking off into the distance.

Sarah paused for a moment. "How did you know?"

As if he didn't hear her, he continued walking down the hallway, opening the door of the examination room. "You know, I had a girl in this morning who had a miserable fever. She had the stomach flu too, and she was barfing her brains out. Good thing I didn't have to deal with her for long. Just gave her some needles for self-injections and sent her on her merry way."

Sarah sat down on the table. She didn't like how the tables here weren't covered with thin paper like they were in America. It seemed dirty.

"Now, I'm going to need you to take your clothes off."

Sarah stared at him blankly. "Why? I just have a fever."

"It's necessary for the examination," the doctor repeated.

There was an uncomfortable silence in the room.

"Is there a female doctor who could do it...?"

"No. I have to do it myself."

"I don't feel comfortable taking off my clothes here."

The doctor set his clipboard down and took off his glasses. A strange smile crept over his lips. "If here isn't good for you... what about my basement?"

Suddenly a lightbulb went off in Sarah's head. The basement... where had she heard this before? It was so familiar... Suddenly, it hit her. She grabbed her purse (which had no money left in it--it had all been stolen) and smacked the doctor upside the head. She grabbed him by the nose and proceeded to yank off the mask covering his face.

"Cody!" she screamed. "I knew it was you all along! Who else would continue to harrass me all the way in a foreign country with suggestions of making out in the basement?!"

The doctor... er... Cody turned away in shame.

"Sarah, I've never forgotten that dance we shared at our freshman formal."

"I have. Cody, that was almost four years ago."

Cody looked her square in the eye, an anger burning inside him. "I thought you loved me! And when you fled south of the border, I had to follow! I disguised myself as a doctor so I would be guaranteed to see you!"

"What?" Sarah exclaimed. "How did you know you would be guaranteed to see me?"

In an awkward pause, Cody hesitantly looked towards the ground.

"Wait a minute..." Suddenly it all made sense. Sarah started piecing it together like a jigsaw puzzle. "That mysterious food poisoning? That mysterious injury that just happened in the middle of the night! Those were no coincidences! You did that deliberately!"

Cody sighed. "All right, I'll admit it. It was I who poisoned your chicken that one night, and it was I that came to you in the middle of the night and broke your kneecap with a hammer. And, yes, I was the one who exposed you to certain bacteria to give you a 100.7 degree fever. It was the only way I'd be certain I could see you."

"And that's why you gave me the self-injecting medicine? So I would have to come back here three times a day?"

He nodded.

"And what about my necklace?" Sarah demanded. "Where is it?!"

"I haven't the slightest clue."

"Cody, where is my necklace?!!"

Embarrassed, he opened his pocket and pulled it out. "I couldn't stand the thought of another man giving this to you."

Sarah snatched it from his open palm and turned away in disgust. So all these hospital visits... all these mysterious burglaries... these were all the fault of Cody.

"Cody, I can't believe you," Sarah spat in disgust. "You have done nothing but ruin my time in Mexico! You are a sick man!"

He paused. "So... does this still mean you want to make out in my basement when my parents aren't home?"

Sarah grabbed a handful of syringes and jabbed them in his back before marching out of the hospital.

For the remaining two weeks, Sarah lounged in the sun, no longer sick and no longer stolen from. Cody had been deported back to the states and she could now relax and enjoy everything about her time in a new country. She watched movies only at the VIP theater (with leather armchairs and tables with waiters) and ate nothing but imported American food. And when she came back to America for Christmas break, she was proud that she had indeed had the time of her life, even though it may have taken a while to get to that point. She was also very proud that she'd stabbed Cody with syringes. THE END.

Monday, November 22, 2004

Mexico hates me!

Haha. Yeah... so, I got the flu. I was sitting there on Thursday trying to study for a test and kept getting distracted by the dancing monkeys on my pajama pants, and my teeth were chattering uncontrollably and stuff. I took my temperature and had a fever of 100.7. So... no school for Sarah on Friday. My house mom drove me to see the university doctor (man, that guy and I are really getting to know each other, huh?) and then I got some medicine from the pharmacy and just... chilled. Slept, watched TV, felt yucky... fun! I`ve never had the achy kind of flu before. It was rather interesting. (Not.) At least it wasn´t the stomach flu so I wasn´t barfing my brains out, whee!

Anyway... so Friday and Saturday were spent just sitting around my bedroom. Fun times. Yesterday I finally had more energy, hooray, so I left the house. I went to see "The Princess Diaries 2". It was soooooooooo good! I had to see it in the VIP theater because the normal ones were dubbed over, and I wanted subtitles! The VIP theater is really cool. There are all these leather recliners with little side tables, foot rests that come out, waiters who will bring you special food before the movie if you order it, tons of leg room... it was amazing. I quite enjoyed the indulgance after two days of invalidism. I loved the movie, too. Her wedding dress was sooo pretty! There were a few parts that had me laughing out loud... sometimes by myself. I don´t think all the fun verbal humor translates. Oh well. Their loss. ;)

My grandpa is going into the hospital for a few days... not a big deal, he`s done it before. He usually perks up when more people are around, too... nurses for him to tease and whatnot. I just wish I could be there instead of wasting my time here. Clearly Mexico doesn´t want me here... I had 6 weeks worth of back problems, shots, got robbed twice, and now the flu. I can take the hint! Only 12 more days and I am out of here... but man, I am really mad about no thanksgiving. Katie is trying to make thanksgiving dinner at alfonsos, but he doesn´t have a lot of dishes, she doesn´t have a lot of experience, and mexico doesn´t have a lot of the necessary ingredients for thanksgiving dinner. *sigh* It just can´t be like thanksgiving at home.

I just want turkey and stuffing and gravy and mashed potatoes and rolls and pumpkin pie and my aunts and uncles and cousins and all the kids and sitting in the living room of my aunts house eating off of TV trays while everyone talks and laughs and to see my mom and my dad and everything.

Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaargh... Mexico hates meeeeeeeeeee!!!!!!!

Wednesday, November 17, 2004

Aunque no te pueda ver

Si ayer tuviste un día gris, tranquila,
yo haré canciones para ver
si así consigo hacerte sonreir
Si lo que quieres es huir, camina,
yo haré canciones para ver
si así consigo fuerzas para vivir.
No tengo más motivos para darte
que este miedo que me da
el no volver a verte nunca más.

Creo ver la lluvia caer;
en mi ventana te veo pero no está lloviendo,
no es más que un reflejo de mi pensamiento.
¡Hoy te echo de menos!
Yo solo quiero hacerte saber,
amigo estés donde estés,
que si te falta el aliento
yo te lo daré.
Si te sientes solo, háblame,
que te estaré escuchando
aunque no te pueda ver.
¡Aunque no te pueda ver!

De tantas cosas que perdí diría
que solo guardo lo que fue
mágico tiempo que nació un abril.
Miradas tristes sobre mí se anida
y se hacen parte de mi piel,
y ahora siempre llueve porque estoy sin ti.
No tengo más motivos para darte
que esta fría soledad,
que necesito darte tantas cosas más.

Creo ver la lluvia caer;
en mi ventana te veo pero no está lloviendo,
no es más que un reflejo de mi pensamiento.
¡Hoy te echo de menos!
Yo solo quiero hacerte saber,
amigo estés donde estés,
que si te falta el aliento
yo te lo daré.
Si te sientes solo, háblame,
que te estaré escuchando
aunque no te pueda ver.
¡Aunque no te pueda ver!

-Alex Ubago

So I found out yesterday that my grandfather isn´t doing very well... he fell down a couple of weeks ago and they think it may have been a small stroke. Since then he hasn´t been talking or eating much... he´s kind of given up. That news really upset me... I mean, I went with my parents and we visited my grandpa this summer, and we said then that it could be the last time I see him... but I didn´t really believe it, you know? Anyway... my parents are in Neosho today for my great aunt´s funeral, but mostly they are seeing how my grandpa is doing. I told them that I will trust their judgement- if he´s just down, okay. I´ll wait until I get home to see him. But if it seems like this could really be it... I´m going to go home next week. Having two more weeks in Mexico isn´t worth never seeing him again.

Anyway... yeah. So that´s been kind of stressful... I mean, I called my mom, upset about the necklace, and then wound up being upset about something completely different. Suffice to say, yesterday wasn´t a great day. Today is better. Just kind of chillin´... I´m debating going to the movies. There isn´t really anything I am dying to see... but new movies come out Friday. Like... Bridget Jones 2. AND Princess Diaries 2!!!!!!! Hahahaa! I am so excited. It´s really sad... PD2 came out in the US just two days after I left in August... and here it is, coming out in Mexico 2 weeks before I leave. Haha. Murl bought it for me on DVD, but I would still like to see it on the big screen. I´m sure I will be happy to own it afterwards! :)

I think I may give in and buy some cheap DVDs here... I know, I know. It´s wrong to support piracy... but apparently it´s not as wrong in Mexico as it is in the US. ;)

My life seems so... upside down. Only 17 days left. This weekend I think I get to go to Tonalá with Gabe and some other people. Finally, I can buy people souveniers! I made a "priority" list and a "secondary" list of people to buy gifts for. My dad and my sister are priorities, and I won`t tell you where my different friends fall... you might feel insulted. ;) I just need to find something little and cool and Mexican that is cheap and buy a whole bunch of it to give to everyone. Haha. Way easier than buying individual gifts, sorry!

Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaargh I want thanksgiving! I am so jealous of everyone in the US who gets to go home next week!!! My host family was asking us about Thanksgiving today at lunch... Katie and some kids in her class want to cook thanksgiving dinner at alfonso`s apartment, but I am kind of skeptical of our ability to bake a turkey, you know? Especially because I don`t think Alfonso has anything in the way of cooking utensils or pans... We looked all over the grocery store the other day for canned pumpkin (to bake a pie), but no such luck. I don`t think they sell stuffing here, either. Maybe we could find some place to cater one for us. ;)

Okay, that´s all. Enjoy the day.


Tuesday, November 16, 2004

Victimize Me

I must have the word "victim" written on my forehead, or a sign on my back that says "rob me!". Aaaaaaaaargh. I am so frustrated right now.

First of all: Last friday night I went to a party at Alyssa´s house for James. He had to go home early because his dad was sick. Anyway... it was a good party: There were a ton of people there, and a lot of them were drunk, but Gabe and I hung out drinking sprite and green tea and stuff. Not everyone was drinking, so it was okay. But yeah... I decided at one point to take a picture of me with Alyssa and James. I went and got my digital camera, shut my bag, took the picture, and was talking to James when we noticed Alyssa´s older sister getting really upset. Turns out someone had stolen her money and cell phone from her purse. Someone had stolen Alyssa´s cell phone, too. I went to check my bag and someone had stolen from me, too. Luckily I had my camera with me and not in the bag, and I only had about 200 pesos in my wallet- less than 20 dollars. They didn´t steal my ID or bank cards or anything. It kind of killed the night, though. Alyssa´s sister was blaming Alyssa for letting people in that she didn´t know, but the party was so big that it would have been rather impossible to patrol. James and Gabe were going around checking the pockets and purses of people who nobody really knew, but they didn´t find the thieves. It sucked... I think James felt bad, and it was a party for him. It was sad.

Yeah... and then this morning when I was getting ready for school, I realized that the silver heart necklace that Murl gave me for Valentine´s day wasn´t on my desk where it always is. I think that one of the guys who has been working on our house stole it, because they have to keep going through our room to get to the little balcony thing. I am furious. I´m mad at myself for being that stupid, I´m mad at the workers because they have done a crappy job anyway and then they STEAL from me... I´m mad at Mexico for being so dumb when they designed houses so that the only way anyone can work on the back of the house is by trucking through the house and making everything filthy. All of the houses are connected to each other, there are no side yards, there is no other way to get to the back...

I´m just....... pissed off. I know I am never going to see that necklace again, and I loved that necklace. I wore it at least twice a week- more than any other piece of jewelry I own. I hope whoever stole it got a good price for it, or that their wife/girlfriend enjoys wearing it as much as I did. Damn it. I am so mad. Can I please just go home now???

Friday, November 12, 2004

Hey-o, what do you know?

Hm. Blogger is now in Spanish. Go figure. So, here´s a "nueva entrada" for y'all to enjoy.

I am a mess. I don´t really know what´s wrong with me. I´ve been a space case all week. The only things I really feel like doing are sleeping, listening to music, using the internet, and talking to people I know on the phone. Seriously... I have talked to my mom almost every day in the last week and a half. I know that a lot of that was because of my back problems and whatever, but still... yesterday I skipped my negocios class so I could call people and talk. I couldn´t think about anything else. This is pathetic!

22 more days. It´s amazing. I can´t wait, honestly. I am just... dying for this time to have already passed so I can be on a plane on my way home. I´m still pretty depressed about Thanksgiving... last night I was watching ER like I do every Thursday night... it´s awesome because they show one of the new episodes and then right after it they show one of the old classic episodes from when Dr. Greene was still on the show, and Carol Hathaway, and George Clooney... ah. Anyway... last night was the classic episode where it´s Thanksgiving Day and Carol has twins. I can remember watching that episode with my family in a hotel room in Neosho one thanksgiving. I was on a roll-away bed right in front of the television. We were all so excited that she had had her babies! And then I was listening to the Josh Groban "Closer" album and I remembered how last year I listened to it in the car on the way home from my aunt´s house. And I was really, really sad. I miss family thanksgiving. I hate knowing that I probably won´t be able to be there for the next few years, either, if I go to school in California. It´s not fair! I know it would be completely unreasonable to come home for Thanksgiving when it´s only a week away from when I come home for good... but you don´t realize how important certain traditions are to you until you can´t participate in them anymore.

I have been blind, unwilling to see
The true love you're giving.
I have ignored every blessing.
I'm on my knees confessing

That I feel myself surrender
Each time I see your face.
I am staggered by your beauty,
Your unassuming grace.
And I feel my heart is turning,
Falling into place.
I can't hide
Now hear my confession.

I have been wrong about you.
Thought I was strong without you.
For so long nothing could move me.
For so long nothing could change me.

Now I feel myself surrender
Each time I see your face
.I am captured by your beauty,
Your unassuming grace.
And I feel my heart is turning,
Falling into place.
I can't hide
Now hear my confession.

[bridge:]
You are the air that I breath.
You're the ground beneath my feet.
When did I stop believing?

Cause I feel myself surrender
Each time I see your face.
I am staggered by your beauty,
Your unassuming grace.
And I feel my heart
Falling into place.
I can't hide
Now hear my confession.
I can't hide
Now hear my confession.
Hear my confession


Oh my gosh... I just panicked and thought I had lost this entire entry. Phew!

I guess I´m kind of depressed... I wish that I had someone to come visit me. It could be really fun... we could take a day trip to Tlaquepaque or Tonalá and go shopping... we could go to the Plazas. I could show them the school and where I work. We could tour Guadalajara's centro... maybe go to a game at the Jalisco stadium. Maybe we could even travel farther- to Puerto Vallarta or Guanajuato. I don´t know. I´m so jealous of these other people who have had family come visit and have taken vacations. It´s hard to know that the only way people are going to know the people and places I talk about are through my stories and my crappy pictures. I want to show someone around, you know? I want someone to see what my life here is like. And... I don´t get that chance.

I hate being so melancholy. I hate knowing that for the next three weeks I am sitting and waiting anxiously until I get to go home. I really like Mexico. I don´t know why I am so anxious to leave. I am just... ready. Ready ready ready. And really really really unwilling to go to class today... bleh... but I skipped a class yesterday, so I shouldn´t do it today. I guess I could skip a different class... hm. No, bad Sarah. No skipping class! Aargh. My sister gets to go home this weekend. Lucky her. I know she has big papers and stuff waiting for her when she gets back, though. She´s not even going to the family thanksgiving this year... she´s going to Tyler´s family´s thanksgiving. Woo woo. I hope that works out nicely. ;)

I´m sure my blog must be really boring for everyone to read because I´m always whining about how I´d like to go home. Haha. I apologize... my life isn´t really that exciting right now, so there´s nothing else for me to write about. Basically my days have consisted of school, the computer place, McDonalds, and home. I´ve been working on typing up college applications... I´m a little more than halfway done, yay. I know I have talked to a few of you online... feel free to IM me if you see me signed on. Either SquishyPoet or PoetOfHope on AIM. Or, as always, feel free to email me at SHGarlow@yahoo.com. I´ll try not to be too boring.

Tuesday, November 09, 2004

Blah busy day

I´m too lazy to write an original post, so I just copy/pasted a bunch of stuff from the email I just sent my parents. Enjoy.

I had my first physical therapy today. It was kind of an adventure, haha. After school I went to downtown guadalajara with Katie and Alfonso to go to this place called San Juan de Dios... I think I´ve told you about it. It´s this giant three level flea market kind of place. Anyway... Katie and I both bought CD´s for really cheap (they´re rip offs, not originals)... She and Alfonso didn´t really buy what they went there for, but whatever. Anyway, all afternoon I had been adamant about how I needed to be back at the house at 3:30 so I would have time to change clothes and get back to the school for my 4:30 appointment. Of course, at 2:40 Katie and Alfonso decide we HAVE to eat something... so we didn´t leave the restaurant until 3:30... and didn´t get back to the house until 4:15... so I was 10 minutes late to my appointment. I was really stressed out and kind of ticked off at them for being so slow and indecisive, but whatever. What´s done is done.

Anyway... went in there and he put these weird electrode things on my back that did this pulsing shock thing, and also some sort of heating pad... so I lay there like that for about 15 minutes or so... I really wish the guy would talk slower. He would say things to me and leave the room, and I would be left there wondering if when he said "just tell me" at the end of that sentence there was something specific I should be waiting for to tell him, or if it was just a general, "if you have any problems, tell me" statement. Bleh. Anywho... then his assistant guy used one of those electronic back massagers to massage my back. Then they popped my neck again and I was on my way. It was about 45 minutes in all, and I´m supposed to go back on Friday. They didn´t say anything about charging, though. I wish they were more communicative... they don´t seem to realize that if they don´t tell me things, I won´t automatically fill in the blanks. Anyway. Friday I will try to ask him to talk slower and see if I need to be paying for these sessions or whatever.

I feel really tired and stressed out today... all the running around being late. I´m really tired of taking these shots... only 2 more to go, but still. I´m just tired of everything today... classes, shots, speaking Spanish all the time, doctors who don´t bother to explain things to me, Katie and Alfonso being themselves... argh. I don´t know. I need to relax, but I´m stressing about these college essays, too... realizing how much I have left to do in not so much time.

I want to go to the movies with Gabe and Co. tomorrow night in celebration of my not having to be home for a shot at 8pm. We´ll see how I am feeling... maybe I´ll want an evening to myself. We´ll see. Is it sad that I always hope that Katie goes out with Alfonso on school nights so I can have some time to myself? When she´s home all evening it really starts to get on my nerves. Even though it gets on my nerves when she gets home really late and then doesn´t want to get up the next morning... haha. I don´t know. I´m going crazy. I apologize. I think today is just another one of those days when I want the time to take a few deep breaths but can´t... so I just feel like crying. I want a hug. Bleh. I really just want a place to hide.

Saturday, November 06, 2004

Needly goodness

Okay... I´m calmer now. No longer crying and researching flights home. ;) Hehe. Yeah... yesterday my host mom took me to a different pharmacy (I STILL keep wanting to spell that farmacy... dang you, Spanish!) that sold the medicine I needed for cheaper, so I bought that plus syringes. Ooh, fun! Then at 8 o´clock she took me to a hospital so I could recieve my injection. We went to the "emergency room", but it wasn´t at all like an American ER. It looked more like a hotel lobby than an ER. I just had to sign in, saying what medicine they were giving me, and pay 30 pesos. Then I went into a room where the nurse gave me the shot. A pain in the ass, literally. Hehe. That´s all. Took less than 5 minutes.

I had to wake up at 7:30 am today to go get my second shot... basically the same drill as the first. Then I came home and slept for 3 more hours. Woo, fun. The rest of my day has pretty much been spent chilling here at the computer lab... watching a bunch of Strongbad E-mails on homestarrunner.com. It´s been forever since I watched those... so funny!!! Good times. I also tortured myself by checking out chipotle.com because Courtney told me that she conned someone into driving her. Waaaaah! I want sooooooooome!!!

I started making the Official Food List last night. Writing it down, I mean... It has all the food I want to eat, from all different places: restaurants, home, in general. Appearing on the list: Chipotle, Jimmy John´s, pumpkin pie, steak, Hy-Vee rolls, real fruit juice. Aah... exactly 4 weeks from today, my friends! 28 days! Like a Sandra Bullock movie, only I´m not in rehab. Or that other movie about 28 days... I never really found out what that one was about... I think dead people. Anyway. I am anxiously anticipating. As I am sure you all are, too!

Aaaah... I started really thinking about Thanksgiving... and how I won´t be there... it´s really, really sad. That feeling as you wake up and don´t have school and there´s all that good food in your future and maybe you watch the Macy´s Parade... And you see all your family and your grandparents and your aunts and uncles and cousins and second cousins and everyone else... or even if it´s just your immediate family, it´s still a special day. Turkey. Pumpkin pie. Mashed potatoes. Cranberry sauce. All the foooooooooooooooooood! Good lord, I am really torturing myself today, aren´t I? And yesterday I was looking at OldNavy.com. All the cute clothes that I can´t buy! Waaaaaaaah!

Okay. Enough whining. It´s time to head home so I can go get another shot. Whee! Only 8 more to go...

Send me emails at shgarlow@yahoo.com. :)


Thursday, November 04, 2004

What a day.

Ugh.

I am screwed up.

I know some of you have been avidly following Sarah´s Backache Chronicles. Well, here is Episode 3948.

So yesterday I wasn´t feeling so hot. I´ve been taking the pills the doctor gave me last monday for almost two weeks. You know- the ones that make me act all loopy and high? Well, I´ve been less out of it this week, which is a plus- but on the minus side, I´ve been feeling more of the back pain. Last night it was bad. I couldn´t even eat dinner. Not only was it these weird chicken sandwiches for the second night in a row, but my back hurt so much that it was making me queasy. So... no eating for Sarah. I took the medicine anyway, even though you´re supposed to take it with food, because the pain was so bad.

Let me explain this pain. It´s not bone pain or muscle pain. It´s like... internal organ pain. Like my kidneys are aching or something. I put up with it, lay in bed, whatever... but by 11 o´clock it was bad. I finally called my parents and talked to them. Seriously... it was like I wasn´t even taking medicine. Bleh. They told me to talk to my host mother, go back to the doctor, stop taking some of the medicines I am on... stuff like that.

Sleep soundly. I get up kind of early because I wanted time to talk to my host mom about doctors and things. I got in the shower before Katie, which I don´t normally do. In the shower i felt like I was going to fall over. My stomach felt awful... eventually I started dry heaving and throwing up stomach acid because there was no food in my stomach to throw up. Not fun. I don´t think I did a very good job of washing my hair or anything, but I was a little distracted. Anyway... went back to my room, lay down for about 20 minutes, then felt well enough to get dressed and stuff. While Katie was in the shower I called and talked to my mom... just gave her an update. I told my host mom what the problem was, and she said that there are doctors I can go to other than the one at the university if I need to.

Felt well enough to eat breakfast, then went to school... Sat through my grammer class, which I needed to attend because we were talking about something new and tomorrow is the final. That went okay... in the break I wasn´t feeling so hot. Kind of chilled in the sun awhile, had Gabe telling me that my only problem was dehydration... I don´t think so. Anyway... I was feeling pretty bad around the time for my lit class, so I didn´t go. I just need to read the story for tomorrow´s final and I´ll be good to go. I went to the computer lab to read the info my parents had sent me about doctors in Guadalajara who are covered by our insurance. I called my mom again because I was feeling awful- I didn´t really even think I could make it across campus to the doctor´s office.

Let me just say, it is pretty terrifying to be in a foreign country, feeling sick, and not being capable of communicating the problem to the doctor. Every time I had visited this campus doctor, he seemed to think that I was just too stressed out and tense from being in a foreign country, and that popping my back would make everything better. It kind of worked the first time, it didn´t work the second time, and he just kept giving me random prescriptions that I didn´t understand... are they pain killers? Muscle relaxers? Anti-inflammatories? I have no clue. It´s scary. What if something was really wrong but the language barrier prevented me from finding out until after I get back to the US?

Anyway... I felt better after talking to my mom. Walked across campus, found Alfonso, waited for Katie to get out of class, then I asked both of them to go with me to the doctor. I´m really glad I did... I wound up really needing Alfonso to translate for me. The doctor remembered me from the other times I have gone in there. He said that clearly he couldn´t do anything for me, and that I needed physical therapy. I was pretty skeptical. I thought my kidneys were exploding- PT isn´t gonna help with that! Anyway, the doctor went out and then came back with the campus physical therapist who works with the soccer team and stuff. He did his own exam of me, discovered that it´s basically my left hip/lower back that are extremely tender, and finally gave me his diagnosis.

Apparently one of my legs is longer than the other. I´m not sure if this is the cause of the problem or an effect of the problem. Anyway, this causes me to walk with more pressure on one side of my body than the other. Therefore my hips or... something in my lower back are uneven. Something was mentioned about my lumbar, I don´t really know what that is. Also, the lower part of my spine is not as curved as it should be- a result of the unevenness or something like that. Anyway... I have to go to physical therapy two times a week until I go home, trying to get my body back in balance.

Okay, that´s fine. I´m cool with that. The doctor gives me a prescription to ease the inflammation of my back so that the PT won´t be so painful, or something like that. Great. I´m fine with that. We merrily go on our way. I was really relieved to know what the problem is and that we´re going to work to solve it.

Katie and Alfonso and I went to lunch at Applebee´s. First I called my mom (yes, AGAIN) to tell her what the doctor said and to ask her to put some money in my bank account so i could fill the prescription. Lunch was awesome- broccoli chicken alfredo, sizzling apple pie with vanilla ice cream for dessert. Expensive, but worth it.

After lunch we went back by our house where Katie and I picked up our laundry, then Alfonso took us to the laundromat to leave our stuff. Then I went to the pharmacy to get my prescription filled. Outside on the sidewalk, I asked Alfonso what the prescription said. It says something about applying one vial every 12 hours. I was like, "Is it a liquid medicine?" He was like, "Oh, yeah, yeah." Okay. We go inside. I hand the guy my prescription. He goes to find it. I´m supposed to apply this stuff every 12 hours for 5 days- so that´s 10 doses. He comes back saying they don´t have that many. I see that each box only contains one dose, so I ask how much it costs. Each box is about 150 pesos- around $13. For 10 doses, that´s over 100 dollars worth of medicine. Way more than I had at that time.

I asked the guy if I could just buy two- to take one tonight and one tomorrow morning. That´s fine- but then he starts asking me if I want cotton and all this other stuff. I look at Alfonso, and he´s like, "It doesn´t come with the syringes and stuff."

Um. This medicine is SHOTS. I am supposed to give MYSELF a shot every 12 hours??? No, that´s not right, Alfonso tells me. I am supposed to go to someone else to get them, such as the doctor on campus. How am I supposed to do that every twelve hours? What about the weekend? Do I go there at 8 am and 8pm? That´s kind of impossible. I was pretty furious. Alfonso had NOT told me that it was shots. The doctor did NOT make that clear to me. He just hands me a prescription and expects me to to stick some needles in myself every 12 hours for a few days. What the hell? This would NOT happen in the united states. At all.

I told the pharmacist that I was going to wait to buy the medicine. I made yet another phone call to my mother about this. It is not right. Absolutely rediculous. Shots??? Why didn´t anyone make this clear to me? How do they expect me to do this? Is this condition really so serious that I have to have SHOTS instead of taking some pills??? Oh my gosh. I´m just so upset that, even with someone there to interpret for me, I missed something so important. Katie was all like, "There´s a serious problem with your back. You can´t just pop a few pills and make it better." Okay- let´s see HER get told unexpectedly, as she stands there waiting to buy over 1000 pesos worth of medicine, that she´s going to have to also purchase some syringes, etc. to inject herself with some medicine she´s never heard of before, that she doesn´t know what it will do.... ARGH.

This is like... my worst nightmare. Something extremely important- my HEALTH- and I can´t communicate and I can´t understand what is going on and there is a serious risk that I could really screw this up- screw my BODY up- because I don´t fully understand what I am supposed to do.

I still hurt. I don´t have the medicine that´s supposed to make me feel better, and I won´t be able to sort this out until I go to the doctor tomorrow and say, what the hell were you thinking?? I know it´s just stress and sickness talking, but I really, REALLY want to go home now. I want to go home and have a doctor who I know and trust, who at least speaks my own freaking language, I want to have my mom there with me, I want my head to clear and for me to stop feeling like my body is on mars because I really, REALLY need to be levelheaded to understand what is going on... I like Mexico. I really do. I am enjoying my time here. But I hate that I have been sick and in pain for weeks now without any true relief. If I felt 100%, I would be all for staying here another month... but feeling sick and having strange doctors tell me that they are going to do things to my body that I don´t really understand to fix a problem that I don´t really understand... help.

Argh. Horrid day. Tomorrow I have finals for this level... no worries about passing those. I would really just like to sleep until this is all over.

Tuesday, November 02, 2004

Estoy harta

I don´t know why it´s putting this pinche espacio at the top of my post. Oh well. I know most of you can´t read this, but that´s okay. It´s more for me than you, anyway. Happy Election Day.
Hoy es uno de esos días... en que estoy harta de todo. Desperté tarde, tuve un examen, me duele la espalda, mi mente y me cuerpo están muy cansadas, tengo mucho que hacer... Estoy harta de compartir mi cuarto. Estoy harta de mis clases y esta universidad. Estoy harta de la comida mexicana. Estoy harta de luchar por ese chavo cuando yo sé que no es el chavo correcto para mí. Estoy harta de estar tan solitaria y soledosa. Quiero pasar el tiempo con mis amigos. Quiero ir a la biblioteca y leer toda la noche. Quiero comer la cena con mis padres en la casa... quiero dormir en mi propia cama. Estoy harta de caminar todo el día. Quiero manejar mi coche! Quiero liberarme de mis emociones por ese chavo porque no quiero hacer esto otra vez en el año que viene. Estoy harta de esperar, de no saber, de todos mis sueños tan inútiles. Quiero tener una vida otra vez. Solamente quiero darme por vencida.

Monday, November 01, 2004

Chills

It´s kind of chilly now. I´ve got a sweatshirt on, but still... maybe we´re actually going to get some fall-type weather! (Not likely. The forecast says it´s going to be high 70´s/low 80´s all week.)

I know, 2 posts in one day... it´s a little much. I apologize. I do have some minor updates.

I think Katie totally spazzed and said our host parents went to Quintana Roo when she meant Querétaro. Uh... big difference. Querétaro is near the state of Mexico, and NOT rediculously half the country´s length away. Hahaha.

Today during my literature class we built an altar to los muertos... ´cause tomorrow is Día de los Muertos. You know. It´s kind of cool, I guess... lots of papel picado (the paper with all the stuff cut out of it that they hang in long banners? yeah.) and marigolds and little fake skulls and stuff. I guess we are working on it more tomorrow. Oh well- it´s better than having real class. Haha.

Went out to lunch with Katie and Alfonso. They are sometimes hard to be around. They just... do that couple-talk where they take 40 minutes to decide something REALLY simple and they walk as if they both had a broken hip because they have to hold hands and be gooey all over one another. Bleh. I really feel like a 3rd wheel around them sometimes. I shouldn´t whine, because I know I put my friends through the same crap in high school... but still. It can be annoying.

I realized today that I have about a month to write a butt load of college essays... oops. I should get cracking on that, no? Bleh. It´s mainly just the essays left for me to do. Other than that... I have most of the online forms filled out. I guess that´s some steps in the right direction.

I have a test tomorrow. Let´s hope I´m not hyper-drugged-out like I was last Thursday. My back is still pretty sore, sadly... I go back to see the doctor on Friday. We´ll see how that goes.

I got fun emails from Julia and my mom today. I get to talk to my parents tonight, too... so that´s exciting. Yup. Well... Happy Monday, everybody. Only 33 days left. And tomorrow, we will hopefully know who our next president will be. Woo! Everybody go vote because I can´t.

The Dancing Pope is el Papa Bailando. Woo!

Hanging with the geeks

I had an interesting weekend... I spent the whole time hanging out with the guys from the computer place by my house, haha. Nice guys.

Friday, after writing a pitiful blog entry, I hung out talking to Paxo, the guy who invited me to go to the Fiestas de Octubre. We talked for a while, then the owner of the computer place came in and played all this weird Mexican music on the computer and kept staring at me for my reaction... I guess wanting me to start dancing or something, I have no idea. Haha. Anyway... around 11 o´clock we went to eat some tacos. First we had some good ones, then Paxo made me try some weird ones. Yes, I have now tasted both brain and intestine tacos. Joy! Haha. It sucks when you don´t know what things MEAN in Spanish...

Saturday... I pretty much just hung out. Paxo wanted me to go to a Halloween party with him, but since I didn´t have a costume or know anyone who was going to be there except for Paxo and his friends, I declined. Talked to Euleta on the phone a bit... the plans with Paxo for hanging out got moved to Sunday, and she was going to go with us. She also has now arranged it so she is on my flight from Guadalajara to Houston on December 4. Whee!

Yesterday I got up early and showered and everything... Euleta called to say that she was too tired to go hang out. Oh well. Around 10 Paxo and his friends came by to pick me up. We then hung around at the computer place for another hour or so... I´m not really sure why we were waiting. Haha. Anyway... we finally got going. There were 7 of us. I rode in a car with Tico, the guy who owns the computer lab place, Paxo, and Jose, who is this really insanely tall guy with curly hair. We drove way out into the country and went to this... sports club. It´s owned by the Universidad de Guadalajara, so I felt kind of like a traitor ;) but not really. It was a really nice place. Some of the guys went to play basketball... I hung out a bit with Luz, the only other girl, and we went swimming in the pool with Tico. Eventually the basketball players came swimming, too... the water was kind of cold, and the air was cool, too, so I was freeeeeeeeeezing. It was fun, though. Entertaining to think that I could go swimming on Halloween, haha.

After swimming we tried to get something to eat... the snack bar place had hamburgers, but they weren´t going to be ready for a while, so they bought a bunch of salchichas instead. Salchichas are hot dogs. Cut up, cold hot dogs, on which they put lime juice, salt, and chile sauce. Sooooooooooo weird. But that´s the way they do everything here. Lime and chile. On potato chips, on fries, on everything. Strange. Anyway... after a while the hamburgers were done, and they were really yummy. Maybe I was just really hungry. Who knows. :) We hung out for a while, but it started to rain, so we went and changed clothes and headed back to Guadalajara.

Got back to the computer place... I didn´t really know what was going on. Katie came by to say that our host parents left suddenly to go to Quintana Roo (a completely different state on the Yukatan peninsula. Not exactly right next door.) I guess the mother of our host father is really sick. Anyway... I decided it would be best to eat outside of the house. I went home and did some homework, then dropped back by the computer place to see if Paxo wanted to go with me to dinner and a movie. He had to work, but his friend drove me in his truck to the Galerias, and gave me his phone number so I could call him after the movie was over. I went to see Wimbledon, which was actually pretty good. I saw my friend Tim, who was pimpin´it with three mexican ladies. Don´t know how that happened. ;) I called the guy and he picked me up. We went out to eat the WEIRDEST hot dogs ever. They slice these buns open, steam them, then stick the hot dog inside, then put on all sorts of weird vegetables and cheese (mushrooms, tomatoes, stuff like that.) It was good, just... weird!

So that´s my weekend... I gotta run to class now. Email me PLEASE (shgarlow@yahoo.com) because my inbox has been sadly empty for a couple of weeks now and I miss you all!