Monday, July 7, 2008

A Piece of Culture & Something special...

Today I slept in. Why? Because I think I’ve been exhausted here lately. Not physically, but mentally. I think we have all been here at one time or another. So, today (Sunday July 6th) I woke up about noon and ate lunch with my host mom and my host brother’s girlfriend. I noticed that my host dad wasn’t there and my family told me that some friends had shown up to serenade him for his birthday (3 days before). His friends are from the far parts of Paraguay and rarely make it into town. My host mom suggested that I go in to the living room to listen to them play. Before going in there I had no idea what was in store for me. Three men were in the living room with instruments creating a spellbinding-sound. Two were playing guitars and one gentleman was playing an accordion. My host dad told me that they do not play formally or for money, but because they enjoy playing and love traditional Paraguayan music. Those of you who know my well, also know how special music is to me. It was truly a pleasure to listen to the 3 men sing and play. My host dad told them that I was really fond of Mexico and that I had a Mexican girlfriend. Immediately the commenced to sing a traditional Paraguayan song, but (al estilo Mexicano, hasta el grito hicieron) performed in a Mexican style. The song was absolutely heart wrenchingly beautiful. I didn’t even know what to do, I just felt my face start getting warm and felt my nostrils start to flare, and next thing I knew I was crying. This song was that good. Thinking back, I didn’t know why I cried, but I know now. I’m in Latin America. There are characteristics that run through all of Latinamerica, however, there are characteristics that make each country distinct from any other. In this case, I think the reason I cried was because every where I look around here, I see Mexico. In many ways Paraguay and Mexico are exactly alike, yet at the same time they are completely alien to one another. Specifically, what made me cry was that the song was so beautiful and I know that my girlfriend Karla would have loved the song, but moreover, she would have really appreciated the gesture and effort on the part of the gentleman to make her feel as much at home as possible through their music. I guess what I cried over, was the fact that I was not able to share the moment with her, I know she would have loved it and would have loved to have shared it with her.

I didn’t get to record the song I really liked, but do have a video of a different song. The video is a very large format, so be paciente with me and I will do my best to try and get it posted a.s.ap. Here are some pictures.

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