So I’m one of those dumb people that will eat croutons for a meal. It’s not healthy I know. But I was recently looking at the ingredients. Let this be known about me. Sometimes I read labels for no reason. When I was working in Medora for the summer, when I knew I had to go but it was going to take a while, I’d grab a bottle and read while I waited. I found out one of our cleaning tablets cured AIDS but you couldn’t ingest it. I want to know what animal they tested that on to find that out. Because I assure you that it had to be tested on something to prove that it was cure for AIDS and be put on the package and why are you testing a cleaning product if it cures AIDS anyway? Were they bored one day and wondered that? OH! Were they in the bathroom? That’s where I do some good thinking along with reading labels. But back to my crouton bag. I was reading the ingredients. It says Canola and/or sunflower oil…..natural butter flavor (a milk ingredient). Let’s talk about that. Why is it and/or sunflower oil? This is a very specific brand of crouton and it’s a specific flavor of crouton. Is it because some of the sunflower oil got on some of the croutons and not the others or both? That actually makes sense to me. Maybe I just had to write it out to understand. So the butter. I just assumed that was a milk ingredient. Is that an erroneous thought? Maybe it’s just a farm girl thought. Anyway. Random thoughts of the day.
I’m in the process of reading a large book called The Invisible Bridge by Julie Orringer. It’s well over 700 pages so it’s taking me a while to get through. Though I’m loving it, it’s taking me a while. Because of that, I decided that I’d go back and review a few books from my past. I looked at my shelves and looked and looked. Then I saw a small book and I got super excited. We’re going back to my elementary, pre-teenage years for this one. The Witch of Blackbird Pond by Elizabeth George Speare. We read this book in school when I was in the sixth grade, I was 12. Just in case you didn’t know what age you are in the sixth grade. Just a random addition here: I remember being sick when we read this book and something was with my teacher and she wasn’t there for like an hour and the elementary principal took over the class for the while and my nose was super stuffed because I was sick and started to run and I didn’t want to get up for a tissue because I was scared of the principal. It was a good class, but I just had a stuffed nose and I was miserable. I loved this book so much I used my own my money to buy it. Big thing when you’re 12. In case you don’t know about this book, let me recap for you. And it’s in my own words.
Kit Tyler is an orphan and she’s going to Connecticut Colony from the Caribbean islands to live with family. Who are Puritans. And they live in a strict Puritan community. She only feels accepted at with an old Quaker woman who lives far from town and is also known as the Witch of Blackbird Pond. And she also feels accepted by a sailor named Nat. Wink Wink. When people find out Kit’s friendship with the Quaker is found out, things go downhill.
So reading this in school, there’s the historical aspect that you’re taught. The witch trials, coming to the colonies, pre-Revolutionary life, etc. I always liked history so this was really interesting. I found out a lot a lot about the Witch Trails with this book. Like are you a witch if you float or you sink in water? Either way you’re screwed right? Either way you’re dead. (Note: With recent events, I could make inappropriate comments with that. But too soon and I don’t want to offend anyone and they are horrible things that I could say.) It’s also a reminder that since this book is set in Connecticut and there’s witch trials. I tend to forget that the witch trials were outside of Salem, Massachusetts. Being accused of being a witch was a much larger thing than a lot of people realize or remember. It was in all the colonies and abroad. There was also a huge witch “problem” in Europe as well. And today people are called witches all the time. Witch is not the word that the speaker is always insinuating. And people are also saying they are and relating to being witch. So the meaning of the word witch is different now than it was in centuries past. I also appreciate that Kit was from the Caribbean. (How do you say that word? What syllable do you stress? The Cari or the be? Just curious.) I forgot that people didn’t always come straight from Europe. Sometimes they stopped in the Caribbean. Everyone has a different story and it’s ridiculous to think that everyone came from their home in Europe straight to where they are living now in the States. My family didn’t. A lot of my family went from Germany to Russia before they came to North Dakota. One part of my family has more than German blood in them and were in Ohio before North Dakota. Some of them even returned to Ohio after WWII. Sometimes you forget that there’s a history before you.
Actual book. Let’s talk about it. If you didn’t get from my description from the book, Nat and Kit get together. Or you assume they get together. At 12, I didn’t see that coming right away and when I realized he was asking her to run away with him on his boat that he just bought, I was ‘ahhhh that’s so cute’. Yup, actual thought and I then I wanted someone to buy a boat for me and ask me to marry them and run away with them. And then there were other things he did that were cute. Looking back, I don’t know how that would work. I don’t do boats very often. It’s not that I’m anti-boat or that I get boat sick. I just have no access to boats. There’s a lake like 20 miles away and I’m like an hour away from the Missouri River but still, where am I going to go with a boat? So maybe at 12 it would have been more applicable for me to daydream about being whisked away by a bike. I could ride on the guy’s handlebars or something.
Then there’s the fact that Kit almost married someone other than Nat. Horrible. I didn’t like that. But there needed to be conflict and being set up was part of the society. Whatever. I also appreciated that this book shows how she struggled to fit in and how she kind of worked at trying to fit in. It’s a good message. Kit couldn’t change who she was. The back of the book describes her as a tropical bird. And coming from the Caribbean to Connecticut, it makes sense. Caribbean is super warm all the time and then Connecticut isn’t. I’m supposing on both. I’ve never been to either. It’s a good message to kids.
But I keep coming back to being accused of being witches. It’s almost like my Mermaid kick I had a few years ago. It’s mass hysteria. I think that people are intimidated by knowledge and things that they don’t understand. Hence people knowing how to help people with a disease when the majority don’t or actually knowing how to swim so you can be a witch. I then wondered what the modern equivalent is to a witch hunt. In the States, it may be cops. I had a discussion about this with some of my kids in Hungary. Part of it is racial but you rarely hear the good of a group of people. You hear a lot of the bad things happening with cops in the past few years. Yes, the things that are coming out are bad. But these are the select few situations. You don’t hear all the good that the rest of the police force is doing. So cops are getting the brunt of it.
Personal life update. I’m reading a lot, I’m trying to finish up some projects. I started working again at the nursing home, which isn’t my favorite job but it’s a job. I did have a few residents that were really excited to see me again. I’m at the other farm full time. I have a fridge now and still no oven/stove. I was at war with both toilets. One is fixed now. The other one is in the bathroom that’s in the entry way and I don’t use that bathroom anyway. I’m also used to the noises now. One night there was strong winds and I was hearing creaks of the house (this house is 50 some years old so it has it’s creaks) and I texted my mom about it and she told me to come home if I needed but I just turned up my stereo and fell asleep to a movie so I was good and then she texted me in the middle of the night asking if I had electricity, which I didn’t, and I was up for another hour listening to the noises of the house. Yup, I now remember I have an overactive imagination. I even heard noises last night I was hesitant over. I swear that it sounded like a foot step! But that’s life.
I can’t sleep. This is the first night since I’ve been back that I haven’t been able to sleep. There’s a lot of things going on that are keeping up.
Yesterday I helped my sister move to Fargo. I don’t necessarily like my brother-in-law. So on top of going through culture re-entry, I have to hold my temper. I didn’t hold my temper very well at the end and both my parents kind of reprimanded me. I’m sure my dad wouldn’t have but felt that I was being rude regardless so he told me not to be crabby. Today I have had the remnants of being frustrated and it’s affecting how I’m reacting to people. Which is unfortunate.
Some of this frustration is from re-entry. I don’t feel understood a lot. I’m not expecting total understanding but I want people to know that I get frustrated more easy now. And it’s for reasons that may seem silly. Things like going to church is a big deal. I need my distance. I want to be alone a lot of the time. I have a hard time being upbeat. Hugs (though I’ve never liked them) are a huge deal now, even from family members. All these things come so much harder now. People aren’t asking what’s going on. They just assume I’m okay. And they’re not seeing how I’m actually acting and picking up on cues. Which is frustrating. I recently got told during a confrontation that I need to heal and I wouldn’t have minded the comment but it was said like I didn’t know I needed to do it. I’m fully aware of a lot, healing being one of them. I think that another problem I’ve been having is that I am having a hard time telling people what’s going on and how to say it without it coming out bitch like. Even when not talking about re-entry things come out bitchy. It’s a hard thing. If I go away again, I don’t know how much time I’ll be spending in the States again. We’ll see how things go.
I come back to the states in 6 days. There’s so much emotion that goes into that one sentence. But this year has made me more emotional than I ever have before. I think when you’re living overseas (especially when you’re a single woman), emotions are amplified by a million. I’m extremely excited to leave, completely sad that I’m leaving. I’m scared for numerous reasons and dreading traveling. I’m in the process of getting things done and getting the last few things. But sitting here, writing. I’m getting the anxious pit in my stomach. I know with how rough these last 10 months have been, a lot of people won’t understand my hesitation for leaving. But no one has really seen the whole story. No one has seen the little moments. Or heard the questions and one liners that were so perfectly spoken by my students. Or had the bonding moments (superficial or not) with the random people that have been a huge part of my life for 300 days. No one knows how many times I’ve asked myself why am I here or the times I’ve thought, this is why I’m here. Yes, I have consciously been aware of how long it will be until I go home in the sense that I will be going back to a place I’ve known my whole life. But now I am also consciously aware of how Budapest has a piece of my heart and that I will leave a little bit of me here and have that hole replaced with Hungary.
There’s still a lot of pain in me. There’s been big events that I’ve missed back home, I’ve practically ruined one of the best friendships I’ve ever had. I’m going to carry those things with me for the rest of my life. There’s a lot of guilt. I can’t change what’s been done or said. I get that. I wish I could change some things though but I knew that coming to Hungary meant that life was going to be tough and life was going to be real and I was going to miss things and relationships would change. Sometimes terminate. (None of my relationships have terminated. Don’t worry. Some have changed dramatically and you know who you are and I’m sorry. I’m trying.) But the thing is, I’ve never been a completely open person. I keep my emotions to myself so that other people can hurt. Until this year, that’s worked for me. I was able to deal under these circumstances. But this year, with emotions amplified, I can’t function like that. I won’t be able to function like I used to for a long time, if ever. I would have eventually come to that point without Hungary but moving here sped it up. I’m sure a lot of people have noticed a change in my blog. I’m writing a lot differently. I need to. I’m sure eventually I’ll get back to writing like I used to, but now this blog is more self-centered. Because I need to throw whatever is in me out into the universe. I can’t leave what’s going on in me inside. It’s why I’ve started journaling like crazy. It helps me get the emotion out.
I don’t know what people expect of me. I know some people will expect me to be the same Megan I’ve always been. I’m not. As much as I fake it, I’m not. There’s a lot more anxiety and much more insecurity and less confidence in some areas. There has been a lot of tears this year from me and there’s going to be a lot more. I’ve cried and will cry for other people and for me. But there will be people that understand. Mainly those who have experienced this themselves. Some others too but it will be harder for them to understand why more than one native English speaker is overwhelming or why going to a restaurant or going to a grocery store with more than one or two options is overwhelming. It’s a special circumstance I’m in, but I’ll get through it.
Yesterday was the last technical day of teaching. I didn’t do anything. One class gave me a picture of them and chocolate. They told me they loved me. I love them too. I didn’t expect to love these kids and this country as much as I do. I expected love but not this deep. It’s a reason I don’t want to leave. I have laughed and cried with and for these kids. How do I move on from that? How does anyone move on from that? I get told by people who have gone back after living overseas for a time and they tell me to give myself some time to heal and don’t put a time limit on it. Leaving in under a week, I realize that I will never completely heal from Hungary and I don’t want to. This country has helped shape me in a way that no one has expected.
I felt like my last post was a little scattered to me so lets see if I can get back into this blogging thing.
So last Sunday, after church, I spent time with a girl I went to orientation with. She’s in a town outside of the city at this more “American” school. We’re both here for a year. She’s here for a year because of the contract she has with the school in New York and I’m just staying for a year because, as of right now, that’s all I’m called to do. So we were talking. Her school makes her take language lessons so she learns Hungarian. Mine doesn’t. She was saying how she doesn’t really want to take these lessons because she’s going to be here for just a year. What’s the point? She mentioned that she can get along with just pointing. It’s been working just fine for her. I then started thinking.
She sounded so condescending. Like the Hungarian language wasn’t worth her time. She came to Hungary for a year. Obviously something was worth it in the country. Trying to communicate in the native language is not only polite but it’s so arrogant sounding. I feel, and whether I have succeeded or not is still to be determined, that I should try to fit in as much as possible. Now I’m teaching Hungarian students and not all her students are Hungarian. It’s different for me. She’s kind of in an American bubble. I’m not. I kind of need to learn some Hungarian. It helps me earn respect from my students. High schoolers are a hard group to impress, no matter where you are in the world. Some things don’t change. I get that Hungarian is a hard language so by the time we would get the hang of it we would leave. (there are 4 categories of language. 4 being the hardest to learn and that’s like Chinese. Hungarian is a 3 so it’s a hard language.) I just have a hard time seeing this like she does. We’re here with a Christian organization. They kind of like us to try to interact. The schools that we’re at don’t have to have us. I mean in my case, they need a native speaker so yeah they need me, but ultimately, they didn’t need to say yes when our company asked them to take us. To learn Hungarian, to me and at least a little, is a sign of respect and honor. I guess she’s not with Hungarians like I am so it’s completely different. Isn’t it? Or am I totally overreacting to this? I mean that’s happened before. I think that it’s happened at least a couple of times on this blog where I overreacted. So again, it’s possible that I’m overreacting.
So I didn’t even touch bilingual church did I? Oy. So. First time I went we were late and they were singing in Hungarian so I was like okay. Cool. I was like they have Hungarians lead worship. Then the worship leader starts praying in English without a Hungarian accent. Like it’s pretty American. What? Way to throw me off. Like I’m not thrown off with life to begin with. Then you turn out to be not Hungarian when I thought you were. Distrust……. Yeah, that’s a lie. I trust this place even though they throw me off.
I have also been taking an insane amount of naps here. First it was because of the jet lag. Now just because I got into the habit of taking naps. Especially on Sunday afternoons. The girl across the hall, also American we are the only 2 Americans at our school, looked at me last weekend and goes, “You really like your Sunday naps, don’t you?” Yes. I am turning into my one or both of my parents.
Good thing: I have a three-day weekend. Bad thing: Hungarians make it up on Saturday. Ugh. Well, at least I’ll get at least one day off next weekend right? Updates to come.
I tell decent stories right? Let me tell you more.
The other day, we came back from dinner/noon meal and I was like I need to go. So I walk over to the bathrooms. You know how usually, in a hall, the woman’s bathroom is first because woman tend to have to pee bad all the time? Not in this hall. So I walk in the men’s bathroom and I look around and I was confused because there used to be more stalls. I looked over and there’s urinals, thankfully no one was in the bathroom. I did jet out of the bathroom though without being caught.
A group of us went to ‘Godzilla’ last Tuesday. Yeah, not my kind of movie. We also went to go see ‘The Fault in our Stars’ on Sunday. That was good.
My roommate and I went to Chicago and The Art Institute. That was fun and then we went to get pizza and then to the river. The air was funny smelling and tasting but the pizza was good. So it evened out.
Thing that’s been bugging me is that people hear I’m from North Dakota and they’re like Mt. Rushmore, Laura Ingalls Wilder. NO! That’s lame-o South Dakota. (I do love SD. Just not home.) Then they go well they’re the same thing anyway. NO! THEY’RE NOT! NORTH Dakota. NORTH! Get it right. There’s a difference.
I talked about grammar all week. BOOOOOOO! I was excited at the beginning of the week. By the end, I hated it. Two weeks left of my training. Halfway through. I can do this right. BTW, if anyone has anything fun to do in the Chicago area on weekends. Let me know.
MJ and I decided we’re not dating this year. That’s kind of unfortunate because the town I’m in now is a very nice biking/running community and there’s a bunch of shirtless guys. And every time I see one I’m walking and look unattractive and don’t say anything back because they’re friendly here. Like one waved to me when he was getting in his car and I was like ‘is he shirtless?’ he was and one guy was biking when we were going to class and he was like ‘have a good day in class’ and I was totally like ‘what?’ Makes me an awkward interacter right? But we have been talking about guys a lot lately. Tonight I was walking and they’re doing some work in this parking lot so there’s a pile of cement and I look over and there’s a guy sitting there. I’m glad I’m not that awkward.
So I don’t know if I’ve announced this but I’m not going to the Czech anymore. I’m going to Hungary. I’m sort of excited, sort of not. It’s a work in progress. I just want to get through this month in one piece.
Random thought. Juliet bothers me. She was like 14. What does she know?
I know I’ve been doing a lot of these but I’m busy, leave me alone. I’m going to do a catch up on my life post again. So here’s the run down on what’s going on.
My chest got stared at and my butt touched, by different men, a week and a half apart and one should not have done what he did. One of my residents told me we were sisters and was disappointed when I told her my brother was married with 2 kids. I got a new computer, which I can’t get on the internet with yet because my parents don’t have wireless. I guess I’m going to Budapest now instead of the Czech Republic. My nephew graduated kindergarten, niece turns 5 next Tuesday. Today is my last shift at the nursing home for a month. I fly to training on Sunday. I’ve helped move equipment from field to field, emptied a pickup of seed bags and been under the drill helping to free it from twine.
Let’s explain some of those things now.
The company I’m working for sent me an email, that I saw yesterday because I’m busy and can’t check my email every day, and told me there’s not enough teaching spots in the Czech Republic. I’m pretty disappointed. I’ve been preparing myself, my heart for this and falling more in love with the country for 8 months and now I have to switch my thinking around in less than half that time. I mean, I’ll deal with it and the company can’t help what the schools want. But there’s been tears about this. But I’ll get over it.
I went shopping yesterday. If you’re Facebook friends with me you know I’ve started to pack for my training. I also said that I felt like I had no clothes for this. So as much as I hate it, I went shopping yesterday and spent way more than I like. You also know that MJ and I had a conversation on a post I had about going shopping. I hate shopping. I’m not a girly girl so going shopping is like pulling teeth. MJ and I have also have discussed me getting into a dress or skirt. She wants to get me in a skirt so bad. She’s trying to get me to be a girly girl. Trust me, if MJ had her way, I would be in dresses and skirts and heels all the time. I’ll take my jeans, tee shirts and boots, thank you very much. So yesterday, to torment MJ, I sent her a selfie of me in a skirt. She still doesn’t know if I bought it or not. If I knew that MJ wouldn’t be reading this post, I would give a definite answer if I bought it or not. But I’ll never tell. Is trying on a gateway drug for me being a girly girl? Hope not. I also got a computer yesterday, but like I said, can’t use the internet on it yet.
So the last post (I think the last post) I talked about the guy that said “Sooooo, you’re a woman”. I mean, I’m not a girly girl but it is kind of obvious that I am of the female gender. Caught him staring at my chest the other day. Awkward. Then he was disappointed to hear that I was leaving. I may be misreading this guy, but is he into me? I hope not. I’d most likely break his heart. No, not most likely, I would break his heart. Poor guy. Fall out of love with me. We’re not made for each other. I promise. We’re too different. I’m to aggressive for you. (It’s weird to think I’m too aggressive for someone) You can find someone better than me. No one saw that coming from me right? Me saying that a guy should find someone else. Mark that down as a significant day in history. And this guy isn’t a bad guy. There’s just enough room for one awkward person and I have that semi-down. He’s not bad looking either. I’m just not interested. Let that be known. I’m not going to talk about the other incident because I don’t want to be pissed off again because that’s what happens when you touch my but and I don’t want you to. I get pissed. And the story could get people in trouble. I’ll must be quiet about it. I know only one person that knows what this reference means but I almost pulled a Brad on him when touched me. (I almost got violent.)
So along with working at the nursing home (last shift for over a month. YAY!) I’ve been helping at home. That means I get to drive a pickup around on country roads. I don’t think people realize how happy this makes me. If I could get a job from late April to about October driving a pickup around on country roads, I would take that in a heart beat. Especially if it’s an old pickup. Makes me even happier. See. Not a girly girl. I’d rather be in an old pickup with my hair up in a messy bun or in a pony tail driving around. Further proof that I need to marry a farmer. I’d totally move back to the farm full time if I could.
The kids are growing up. The nephew is now a kindergarten grad and the niece will be starting kindergarten in the fall and turning 5. The nephew continues to break my heart every time he’s excited to hang out with me and then asks me how many days he has left with me. I’m continuing to the love the niece even though, personality wise, we’re completely different and she drives me a little crazy every once in a while.
MJ and I have still been writing. It’s our drug. I joke that I’m the puppet master of this story because I plant ideas in her head and she goes all dramatic on her sections with these ideas and it’s making our story 1,000% better because my sections are lame sauce. There’s amnesia involved now and a super lame guy. I’ve used lame to describe this guy like a thousand times. He’s so lame. This story is turning into a soap opera. I’m convinced. Now MJ is taking a vacation down south and I’ll probably have to wait for an entry…… 😦 sad face.
So that’s the main things going on in my life. It sounds like a lot and it is but it’s all non-exciting things.
So there’s this car place in the area. It’s Kupper Chevrolet. Do you pronounce it Kupper like cup-her or coop-her? I’ve been pronouncing it cup-her. I’m wrong. It’s coop-her. What the eff? I’m pronouncing it right, everyone else is wrong. Sorry that was a random tangent. It’ll happen again.