Gun shops and soap operas

Whew, so much for me thinking that my last few days in BA would be nice and relaxing… I volunteered with LIFE for the last time yesterday, which I was quite sad about! 🙁 We threw a party for all the kids who have a birthday this month and it was really fun. We all played skipping in the yard next to the centre for a while, which was a big hit with the kids, and afterwards they all went inside to blow out their candles and get some presents. I thought it was a great thing for LIFE to do! 🙂 Whilst the skipping was going on, a little girl asked me if I had a camera. I took it out cautiously, thinking it would be great to get some photos of everyone seeing as it was my last time, but then the girl grabbed it and started taking zillions of pictures of all her friends skipping. I got firm, though, and intervened before my camera got lost in all the chaos! Apparently the kids are obsessed with cameras and adore seeing themselves in photos, which is understandable as they won’t have any cameras of their own. All the same, I was keen to keep my camera for the rest of the journey!

The ride back to the city centre was somewhat strange! The minivan driver pulled into a petrol station a few minutes after picking us up and disappeared off somewhere after parking the van in a stupid position – none of the cars in the petrol station could get out because of our van! Naturally, there was much hooting of horns (it’s BA!) and angry faces poking out of cars. It was then that I noticed how dodgy the petrol station looked; there were some policemen standing about ten metres away and just across the road was a building with a sign reading “gun shop”. Eek! A guy got out of his car and started shouting at our co-ordinator, a young French dude who was sitting in the front. He promptly turned up our radio full blast and suddenly the most ridiculous song I’ve ever heard was pumping around the van, with a jolting cumbia style rhythm and a group singing cheerily. The French guy started waving his hands around and shouted, “Everybody sing!” while the guy outside just stood there bemused. It was so funny that I couldn’t stop myself laughing! 😆

Speaking of laughter, I don’t think I’ve ever laughed as much as I have today. My Spanish class is down to just Chris, Alok and me and last week we decided that we would make a “telenovela”, an Argentine soap opera, using Alok’s video camera. The story was that Chris was a porteño rapper called Chorizo Picante (spicy sausage!) and I was his vegetarian wife. However, we were having issues because he wanted milanesas (schnitzel) for his dinner every night but I kept making him lentils! So then he went to Doctor Amor, played by Alok, for help with his problems. Keeping a straight face whilst filming their scene was very, very hard! They both came out with so much hilarious stuff in Spanish that I think I cracked a couple of ribs from trying not to laugh! Alok borrowed my hat and my teacher Estefania’s multicoloured scarf for the scene and he looked ridiculous but so perfect for the part of a suave doctor of love! Estefania joined in too and she played Dr Amor’s secretary. I honestly don’t think I’ll ever laugh so hard again! 😀

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