This week's party saw better weather but only a dozen people attending. One couple's child was sick so they bowed out with lots of apologies and several others had to go to work instead on the new date. I'm sorry that my bicycle buddies Veronica and Nancy couldn't come this week, I really owe them a separate dinner for all of their help while Wally was away.
We had some Chorizos and salami. Here in Uruguay Pizza normally comes without Mozzarella cheese unless you request it as a topping, so one person brought little pizza squares, sin (without ) cheese. One person brought a bunch of thin sandwiches and I mean thin. It's funny how I still find things different and amusing in this country. The sandwiches in question were not thin due to a lack of ingredients or finances on the part of our friend rather they were store bought and these are the typical sandwiches found here. I've seen these flat ones many times before and I finally had to ask about their size. That seemed to cause some confusion as my friend couldn't conceive what I meant by fatter, thicker ones. My friend kept asking, "Do you mean sandwiches made on Buns and not white bread?" "No, sandwiches made with white bread just bigger and thicker!" "I can't picture thicker sandwiches!" Oh well, I left that subject alone and took a picture instead!
Then it was time for karaoke. Wally wrote everyone's name down, then we picked their names from a hat (a straw hat) and he made everyone sing. We have slowly been adding Spanish songs to our Karaoke player. Our friends sang Spanish songs this evening. Wally and I even tried singing some songs in Spanish! With some help from our friends, we sang, that is I tried, Fotografia, a duet, by Juanes and Nellie Furtado. It's a song I intend to work on and really learn for future karaoke gatherings. If you think that Spanish speakers talk really fast, you should see how they sing. Many songs may start out slow enough but most verses seem to increase in speed as the song progresses.
Since we had to sing in Spanish, Wally made them sing one song each in English (empathy training). Our friends seem to love the "Backstreet Boys" so a group of them tried, "As long as you love me" by that group. Most people here know English songs so they bested us with their English while I still hung my head down in shame.
One couple really surprised us with how well they could sing. Andrea sang a very Spanish (from Spain) type of song "Ojos Asi" (eyes like that). I think it had some Arabic lyrics as well (not that any of us know that language) during the singing, we felt we should all be wearing boots and doing the Paso Doble. Everyone started clapping hands in unison and someone ran around like a bull plunging at an invisible cape.
One day on a very crowed bus he was sitting down next to someone while others were standing. The ones standing were holding on to the above hand rails. Pressed up against them was a man standing. This man kept looking under his arm, that was holding on to the grab bar at the man seated next to Marcelo. Peeking under his arm he kept staring and staring at Marcelo's bench companion. Finally, the sitting man said out loud "Hey! "Why do you keep staring at me?" The standing man said,"I'm staring because except for the mustache, you look exactly like my wife!" The sitting man said, "But I don't have a mustache!" The standing man said "I know, I was talking about my wife!" A true story!
Another time Marcelo was ridding on the bus when a policeman came on board. As a side note the bus companies allow up to 2 policemen to ride for free while on the same bus. If a third one steps on he will have to pay. Well a policeman came on board payed and during that he dropped his gun, it slid out of its holster. An old woman saw what happened and picking up the gun she walked over to the policeman. Gripping the gun she pointed it at his head saying,"You lost your gun, you lost your gun!"
Carolina my friend and interpreter in emergencies, made a torta (cake) for dessert. It was "muy rico" (very rich) a phrase, often heard here. It had a frosting of whipped cream and was layered with what else but Dulce de leche. If you live here in Uruguay you must learn to love and embrace that carmel like substance as it is in or on 99% of the desserts served. I went from being so so about it, to challenging myself to find desserts without it, like finding lemon torts for instance. Finally, I found a brand that I liked called "Los Nietitos" an endearing term for the grandchildren. Now, I too buy big tubs of it. Apples and Dulce de Leche, umm,umm, yum,yum!
We stayed late into the night laughing and singing, glad that Wally was back and so was our Karaoke parties!