Let us mourn a fallen soldier…

Please everyone, a moment of silence. On this day, September 7, 2003, a great compatriot was lost. He served me well for 7 days – but alas, as with many great ones in the past, he was left on the bus coming back from the bullfights. Yes…yes, my hat is no more. A tear comes to my eye as I write this, actually. He shall…he…he shall always be in my memories, however, and although he will never really be replaced, I´ll probably get another tomorrow.

In other news, I went to the bullfights today. Check out the pictures in the gallery. Things may look a little weird as I rearranged all the pics by city, but the new one is the Sanguolqi album. In these bullfights, they don´t kill the bull – they just mess around with him. Thing´s were going great and then it started raining like I’ve never seen before.

It was outta control and we were all trapped under this crazy three story club house-like stadium for several hours. It didn’t stop the bullfights though and after everyone in the stadium was sufficiently drunk, people crowded into the ring to taunt the bull. About 3 people got mauled – which I am assuming is what they wanted – and a few horses got knocked around. This place was pretty incredible though. You walk down the road to the homemade stadium and there are hundreds of people roasting pigs over fire, making pastries, selling water, beer, gum, candy, soda, biscuits. If you want to use the bathroom, it´s 15 cents – no ifs ands or buts.

It´s two bucks to go into your “suite” in the stadium and if you venture over the imaginary line to either neighboring suite, a lady comes up and yells at you. When the rain started, everyone took turns hitting the tarps above our heads to get rid of the water and everyone screamed in unison as the water fell through the holes onto one or two random and different people each time. As soon as the rain started, a hundred people started selling 5×2 feet sheets of plastic to cover up. As the rain varied its intensity the price ranged from .25 cents to a dollar. It was wild.

It´s funny – I thought that I knew Spanish until I came here and it became the only language I can speak. I am learning really fast though and it doesn’t seem like it´s only been 7 days. The most frustrating thing though is that I can´t make many subtle and dry jokes because that takes a better command of the language.

The question was posed to me in an email – which way does the water in the toilets spin at the center of the earth? I have scientifically tested two toilets to find the answer. In one it just kind of filled up then was sucked away without any spin. In the other, it went counter-clockwise. I think I´ll have to poll more toilets around the city to get more conclusive statistics.

Please pray for my hat.

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