02 March 2010

First day of Class—or—I’m from Chicago, erm, I mean, Indiana

So my classes here are a little different.  For starters, I have each class only one day
a week.  That means that I won’t go to my
Monday class until next Monday (classes began on Tuesday).  That class will be from 2:00 until 5:00,
three hours in one day.  Isn’t that

Today I had my first Portuguese as a Foreign Language
class.  It was pretty introductory—we introduced
ourselves in Portuguese and took a brief tour of our enormous campus, just
touching on the more important places. . . you know, where the clinic is (yes,
Mom!  I’m covered if I get sick!!! And
they keep an ambulance on hand in case it’s REALLY bad), where our classes are,
and where our coordinator’s office is in case we need some help.  My classmates are from places like Mexico
(all my roommates are in the class with me), France, Spain, and there’s another
gal from the US.   Which leads me to a story.

When I travel I usually just say I’m from Chicago.  No one has heard of La Porte, Indiana, and
heck, many people don’t actually know where Chicago is either.  On that basis, many of my friends make fun of
me.  It’s a regional joke to say you’re
from Chicago when in fact you live in Northwestern Indiana, and those actually from
Chicago usually laugh the hardest. 
So I felt pretty stupid today when in class the other American
introduced herself and said she was from Chicago and I replied, “Me, too!”  Upon further examination, however, she really
from Chicago.  As in, she lives
about two blocks from Navy Pier.  So when
she asked me what part of Chicago I’m from, I blushed and replied, “Indiana.”


After class I saw this:

Format: wmv
Duration: --:--


Also after class, my professor asked me if I would like to come
to her advanced English class later.  Since
I’m still working out my Portuguese I could have misunderstood, BUT I THINK I get
to help her students practice speaking English with a native speaker.  And I get to make Brazilian friends.  Hooray! 
Everyone wins!  


SO, assuming I understand everything correctly (but I
probably don’t), I have class from 2:00-5:00 on Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday,
and each day is a different class.  I
*think* that means I have Wednesday and Friday off; BUT I ALSO think I heard
something at the end of Portuguese that implied we would have class more
frequently than that.  I’ll have to ask
my roommates—they understand a lot more than I do right now.  I’m so lucky to have them around.  Seriously. 


Tomorrow I get my student ID card and will hopefully gain
access to the campus’s internet connections. 
I think I’m going to try to spend most of my time on campus, but we’ll
see how that goes.  For the life of me I can’t
find a suitable place to plug my computer in! There are plenty of benches and
related resting places on campus but none seem to have outlets anywhere
nearby.  Maybe Ball State has spoiled me
with campus-wide wireless and digital media basically at my fingertips no matter where I am on campus.

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