Wednesday, January 25, 2012

RHETO Extravaganza: 12/1/2010

     For breakfast, the grandparents of my Slovakian correspondent laid out multitudes of various options. They served me a hot dog, poached eggs, bacon, hot chocolate, crescent rolls, fruits, and more. I felt obligated to eat most of the food that could feed a cow. Lucia barely touched her meal; she told me she rarely eats breakfast.
     The grandparents drove me to the parking lot, where everyone was meeting, after I almost ate myself into a coma. Driving down the road, my teachers told us we were going to the mountains for the day. The bus dropped us off and we walked toward some small shops overlooked by the High Tatras. I was walking by the side of the road when, all of a sudden, a boy who was sledding down the hill collided into my legs. The sky jumped into my center view as my feet flipped into the air and my back smashed into the icy ground. The side of my body landed on the sledding person and I was pulled down to the bottom of the hill. This event happened within a thunder-clap of a second, not allowing me to process the situation until after a random classmate took ahold of me and yanked me upright. I was unharmed, moreover, a giggle rose in my chest; it's not everyday that I get a free ride down a slopped hill with a random guy.
     Unscathed, I resumed my walk with my classmates to the shops, then toward the Glacial Lake. The incredibly strong winds batted against my body as my friends and I slowly walked around the outside of the massive  lake. Some of my sportive classmates started a snowball fight. Mostly the boys chucked the balls of snow swirling around my head and I tried to briskened my pace to avoid the avalanche of air borne snow.
     With much patience I maneuvered away from the snow ball fight and boarded the bus that was taking us to Aqua City- an outdoor water park. I made my way to the changing rooms and waited for my turn. A classmate walked up to me and asked if she could use the changing room at the same time as I, since almost one hundred of us were waiting for the same changing rooms. I agreed, but only after hesitating; I never felt comfortable undressing in front of people, but I made an exception to be kind. When the door opened, my classmate scurried into the changing room and signaled for her friend to join. Immediately, my comfort zone was violated. The room was obviously not large enough for three people to undress with dignity and so I told them there was no way it was going to work. My classmate said, "suit yourself," and closed the door on me. Her behavior was uncalled for, especially since it was I who invited her into my changing room caused by her insistence. I hate it when people use me.
     I finally repossessed a different changing room after 10 more minutes of waiting. My friends were already in the pools and I joined them. The temperature of the water was at a higher level than regular pools because the swimming area was located outside. Many boys climbed out of the pool and laid in the lumps of snow nearby, then re-enter the steaming, hot pools (I don't believe that is good for the health). Near the other side of the pool, monsieur Jackmann, my religion teacher, was teaching one of the girls how to swim. Due to the excessive heat, I left the pools early to meet up with my group to return to my correspondent.
     Over the home cooked meal Lucia's parents made, we discussed Slovakian history. Lucia's brother was at the apartment as well and we stumbled across the subject of his band. He gave me his CD that included some rock songs his group invented. Later, as I listened to the songs, I was impressed by how fluently the main singer in his band sung to the beat of his base guitar.
     Lucia wanted to take me ice skating at the mall, but before I went out the door, Lucia's mom handed me a bag of ginger star cookies. It was a random act of generosity and I accepted them joyfully. The people we were meeting at the mall had not eaten previously, so Lucia, another Slovakian, and I went by ourselves. Lucia thought she could rent ice skates at the mall, but none existed. Be that what it may, the generous Slovakian guy hanging out with us borrowed me his second pair of skates. The artificial ice was not slippery enough, causing me to fall constantly. I probably looked like a baboon on stilts from the way I was looping around the ice rink in my oversized skating shoes.
     At any rate, we ended our little skating experience and returned to the restaurant where we left all our friends. The Belgians were extremely difficult to be around. Beforehand, the Slovakians tried to take them out to a different restaurant, but the Belgians refused. At the pizza joint the Belgians chose, they tried to reorganize the tables and made a mess. Aside from the fact that the Slovakians paid for the meal, the Belgians still complained. I was embarrassed by the Belgians behavior and we left in due time thankfully.
     The group returned to the bar restaurant I saw on the first night of my arrival. I sat beside the Belgians who huddle in the corner on the couches. The waitress came around to take our orders and one of the boys drew her attention. The guy was trying to order a certain type of beer, but the waitress said they did not have it. The Belgian refused to give up and kept demanding for this drink in an offensive tone. The waitress stood there and shook her head, so the Belgian flicked her off. I watched as the waitress turned and walked away saying something in Slovak. My correspondent told me the waitress said she refused to serve him from then on.
     I was getting tired and I did not want to hang around with the rude guy, so Lucia's dad took us home. The party at the bar restaurant was not much fun and Lucia's dad had to work early the next morning. I still felt energized, even after walking around the mountain and swimming in the hot pools. With much effort I fell asleep on the couch that Lucia's grandparents let me sleep on during the extent of my stay.

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