Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Spills, Tamales, and Dominicans

I have borrowed my Dad's laptop and tested this picture thing, and I can post photos! Yay! I have some great ones from our choir dinner:

The English Loose Noose.

The Altos...back when nuns were men! (Not really--it is just something that seems funny after having to repeatedly hit a low F)

The Sopranos--the photo says it all.

Life here in South Carolina has been pretty eventful. Last week, while I was teaching I "lost" a student--in other words, she fell off. She jumped a few low jumps, and the horse decided he had enough. One thing led to another, and soon this little girl was on the ground. Though I have seen many, it was quite unlike any fall I've seen before. She fell at a particularly dusty corner in the ring, and it being a hot summer day, her horse kicked up a veritable cumulous cloud of dust. Thus, as she tipped off, it appeared to me that she slipped off her horse and vanished! I thought to myself, how am I going to explain this one to my boss? It was certainly the closest thing to the Rapture I have ever seen, and hopefully will ever see. But a few seconds later a very dirty rider rose from the ashes and walked towards me, and the rest of the lesson passed uneventfully.

There are many Hispanic communities from different Latin American countries here. So, it was only inevitable that at some point they should have the First Annual Tamale Festival, which took place last Sunday. Tamales are a very mysterious thing to us Gringos, so I asked my older sister, the one who has spent the past 2 years in Beliz about this phenomena. As near as I could figure from what she said, a tamale is a VERY popular food in Latin American countries that takes about 3 days to prepare. It is a piece of meat and sometimes cheese, covered in a thick layer of cornmeal and other mysterious things, and then wrapped in corn husks and cooked. Cooked how, I asked. She did not know, and remarked that it was probably for the best. But they are standard fare at Novenas, and funerals and wakes. (Hmm...) The highlight of this festival would be the judging of which country cooked the best tamales (Columbia won, followed by Puerto Rico and Mexico), as well as a wonder I have never seen before: a 10-pound tamale. The cook of this monstrosity let me take a picture of it, which I post for your viewing pleasure. The green things around it are the corn husk wrappings.

It was apparently stuffed with pork. My brother was brave enough to try some.

Our family was also very blessed this past week to be able to host a Dominican Sister of Mary Mother of the Eucharist, and 3 postulants who journeyed down here to do a kids camp. Randomly enough, one of them was a certain notorious Sr. Carly. It was wonderful to see her again. My family was also introduced to two of her classmates: Sr. Sarah from Canada, and Sr. Ruth from Texas. (Sr. Ruth told my dad that he grilled like a Texan, much to his delight.) They are such a great order, and their presence was a breath of fresh Catholic air. Some of the sisters are going to come down and start working in our parish school. God is so good! Sr. Carly says hello to all y'all Christendomites. She passed her Catechism test and she receives her habit and white veil in a month and a half, on the feast of Our Lady of the Snows. But right now she is still in the blue penguin suit.

I have to feed tomorrow morning, so I must wrap up now. Sorry for the poor writing style--no doubt Dr. Stanford would find many of his constellations in this post. Colin, I can't wait to hear stories about Asia. Sylvia, good luck with your new job! I am keeping you all in my prayers; please pray for me.

1 comment:

Kathryn said...

Great pics and post Emily! The one of the soprano's and Jay is quite humorous. Paul and Jay are the only gentleman I know who wear such incredibly thin ties.