Mar 17, 2008


I have a confession to make:

Sometimes, I am sick of listening to Spanish. It is truly a beautiful language. I have enjoyed studying it and will continue to study and practice, but I have my days when it just makes me brain-tired to listen to it. During these times I have to turn on the television and hunt for CSI or some other program on cable that they don't have dubbed in Spanish. It doesn't happen to me every day, but it's happening today and I just can't bring myself to go to the market to paw through the morning crowd for vegetables. I need to go to the supermarket instead. I need to go to Papa John's Pizza and blow 40 soles on a real pizza. I just need a regular dose of US to get me through the rest of the month. Luckily for me, I can get my regular doses of US without going too far from home. Papa John's just opened up about 5 blocks from our apartment building. I love that the banner inside the pizza place is all in English and that the names of the pizzas are in English, like "The Works". The supermarket has Mott's applesauce and Philadelphia cream cheese and Red Bull. Sometimes I search for things that have the original packaging that gives the ingredients in English and says that it was made in Chicago, Illinois.

Somedays I can't listen to music. I enjoy Peruvian music and it's beautiful, but I can only stand it in small doses, just as I can only stand rap, rock, country-western, jazz, and classical music in small doses. Before this week, I had never thought I could overdose and get sick on music, but it's happened. I think it's happened because when they play their typical Peruvian music, they play it at about 100 decibels and they play the same music over and over and over. Yesterday I was waiting in the car for O, listening to the radio and surfing the channels. I came across a channel that was playing the sound track from "Porgy and Bess", with no commercial interruptions. What a relief it was to listen to something easy and relaxing! O came back and switched the channel to something that would keep him energetic while driving. Okay. He wouldn't have switched channels if I had asked him not to. But now I know where the easy listening channel is and I'll use it at home.

I have days when I don't want to leave the apartment. It's my safe escape from the rest of the world. During those days, I completely resent it when someone comes to the door, calls on the phone, or when I have to go to work. Work draws me out of that mood, luckily. Living here with so much humanity around us is hard for me. We live in a nice neighborhood. It's clean, beautiful, lots to do, with friendly people and a regular security patrol. But sometimes listening to the neighbors play their music over and over, hearing their parties go till all hours of the night, the constant tooting of horns and squealing of brakes on the street sometimes gets to me.

One last thing that gets to me sometimes are the voices they use to dub over the voices from other languages and put them in Spanish. My niece told me that it seemed like every movie dubbed into Spanish sounded the same. That's because they are almost always the same people who are doing the voice-overs. But what really is my problem is that the women almost always use overly exaggerated voices, often falsetto voices and overly dramatic laughter. Gag me. It's especially bad if I've seen the movie before or if I'm familiar with the sound of the actor's voice. Imagine Angelina Jolie or Kathleen Turner with a high, screeching voice and a falsetto laugh. It's just wrong. Lara Croft wouldn't have been a successful tomb raider if she had sounded like a hysterical primadonna.


yarnplayer said...

It must get tiresome to be listening to a second language all the time. Hope that your fiber pursuits bring you comfort.

Wooly Works said...

This one definitely makes me go hmmm... Are you ready to come back for an extended visit...with O?

Kathleen said...

Actually, it's not that much different than when I moved to Cheyenne. I hated going outside because it felt like I was so EXPOSED. There was no privacy. It always felt like the neighbors were watching me. I could hear the train go by every night. I heard the cars go by all the time. I heard the loud music blaring from the passing cars. I could hear the kids screaming as they left school. They fed their half-eaten platic wrapped sandwiches to Sunny and then he almost died from a "dietary indiscretion" (eating plastic sandwich bags), according to the vet.

I think that I just have my days when I get fed up with everything. But I always have my happy Celeste to force me out of the apartment and run the legs off me. She's an instant mood elevater.

Maggie's Farm said...

You really do go back and forth between two different worlds, don't you? Do you ever long to move back to the farm permanently? Would O ever consider coming with you?