Not only did we get home way before the roosters last night (11 pm) but I was so tired at dinner, I could not suppress my constant need to yawn during the last half hour of our dinner conversation. And it’s not that it wasn’t interesting: Esteban and our friends were talking about Colombian culture and politics and what was going on in other Latin America countries. I was learning a lot but I was also exhausted and didn’t have much to offer to the conversation. Turns out that I don’t know much about Colombian politics or what’s going on in other Latin American countries. Plus it was hard to keep up with the Spanish in my exhausted state. Esteban said that he had never seen me so quiet in a social setting.
Still, it was good to be out. The restaurant was packed. The food was yummy. There were people everywhere. Lines were formed in front of popular restaurants and nightclubs. Party buses kept driving by. Yes, there were buses driving down the street full of people drinking and dancing. Apparently, you can rent party buses here. It comes equipped with drink and food, an instant party on wheels. I think I want to do that for my birthday in December… not that we know enough people to fill up a bus, but who knows, maybe by December. In any case, if you were to judge Bogota based primarily on the scene I saw last, you would think you were in a very affluent city. But as our friend mentioned, there are people starving just a few blocks away from here. That was a somber realization.
So today, it’s a gorgeous, sunny, warm morning here. I am sitting in the beautiful yard at school, waiting for Jade. The grass is oh-so green. The flowers are colorful and luscious. The chickens and chicks are milling around near me. It’s all quite idyllic. Jade is here for three hours working with the third grade teacher who is evaluating her to see how much work they will need to do for her to skip third grade and be ready for fourth grade by the start of the local school year in February. Jade is currently the oldest kid in her class and is significantly more mature than her classmates. The academic work isn’t the least bit challenging but more importantly, she doesn’t seem to be making any close friends. She plays with the kids in her class but as the school director pointed out, she often seems unengaged, like she is playing with them because there is nobody else around.
So we are trying to see if it would help to move her up a grade and be with kids closer to her own age (although she would be the youngest kid in the combined forth/fifth grade classroom). The potential problem is that Jade would have to work with the third grade teacher every Saturday and then during Winter Break (2 months here). This was the time we planned to use to have friends and family come and visit and also just to travel around and have fun as a family. Plus, Jade isn’t too excited about having to go to school while everybody else is on summer vacation. Not to mention that all this work will be so that she can go to fourth grade here for five months and then when we return to the States, she would either have to repeat most of fourth grade again or move up to fifth grade, which would be devastating to her because all of her friends back in the States would be in the fourth grade. What to do?