February 19, 2010

Cultural mixing

Beginning with the Navy Officers Wives' Breakfast, it was a day that brought home the notion of bi-culturalism.
At the Officers Wives' breakfast, we have rifa, or raffle and then play loteria - lottery - which is audio-visual bingo. Look at the heart with the arrow through it on the left. Pretty romantic, eh?
The caller has a deck of cards from which she pulls one and with great enunciation calls it and shows the card. You put a chip over it and as it goes on, someone eventually shouts "Ya!" Done already.
While playing this, we still a chance to talk about tattoos. On eyebrows - Blanca has them. On lips, Blanco and Judy have them. And eyeliner, which Judy has.
After the breakfast, in which I didn't win a door prize or a rifa, raffle, I went on to the Centro de Salud, Health Center, for my H1N1 shot. "Do you have an appointment?" Jeannine and Gail asked me in front. No, but vaccine clinic is over for the day very soon! Only Lidia Guadalupe with daughter in front of me for la vacuna and ya! I was done.
I was warned that I may feel achy in a few days and told what to take.
Then to the Navy commisary , where Jeannine and Gail said they were headed, for dog food and rum - for mojitos I'll be making Sunday for my Lithuanian American guests. I was still early for lunch, but thought I'd go early to chat with Vivian. She was already packed at near sell out. Word has gotten out that Vivan's Qubano is Number One on Trip Advisor's list of Isla restaurants. So...
Gail and Jeannine were there already! And then Lynnie and Mary arrived. These were the Zina's Guest House guests I shared a cab already in route to going home on Fat Tuesday. Another chance meeting! Lynnie has been volunteering mornings at the La Gloria English School.
Felipe arrived and he saw Vivian makes tostones. Everyone in the Caribbean eats tostones, said Felipe, and for him it had been a while! Up until then, he was just looking forward to speaking grammatically correct Spanish on Isla! Most islanders here don't, a blessing for me. Ha!
Tostones are fried plantains, remashed and refried until they are like french toast. Vivian has taken it a step further and makes them the basis for a dandwich of grilled chicken and carmelized onions, using tostones as if they were bread. Felipe, a Puerto Rican, said it was a unique invention as he tasted mine.
Felipe had a side of tostones the chips, and a Cuban sandwich, classic recipe with mustard and pickle. Delish, he said. Yes, I tasted it too and had never had one made the classic way, mustard and pickle, before. Delish!
We then went to see if Rick had boarded the Ultramar in time to keep a date with Carlos. No lo se. I don't know.
Came home to let Boca out of her carrier for business and ran out again to Mar y Sol to see if contact had been made with the Little Yellow School house. Peggy and her husband raised $3,000US with "chili for the children." And that is to be featured on a US cooking show with Peggy carrying a bowl of chili at dusk. No sun. No shoot.
Home, Karina comes running over. Carmen is having surgery in the morning for a broken clavicle. Would I take Karina's muchacha to clean in the morning. Yes, for the upstairs apartment. Then Lynnie and Mary leave in the afternoon....again on Saturday.
And I laid down thinking how different my life and language have become. A day earlier on our Isla Mujeres tour, I pointed to the new graveyard. "There's the new cementery," I said. And we laughed. Cementerio is the word Spanish. Cemetery!

1 comment:

Jane said...

Nice story. I enjoyed it alot!