Monday, May 9, 2011


Unfortunately, I will have to do this post without photos. I have the cable and the camera with me, but they are in my room and I don't have internet in my room. As I currently have the time and the drive to post, I figured I would take my chance, even though there are no pictures.

A few things have happened since my last post. Classes closed up shop on Wednesday the 4th of May. At Tec de Monterrey, finals then last until the 18th of May. Luckily, I had two tests on the 5th, turned in a paper on the 6th, did a project early, and a friend is turning a paper in for us tomorrow.

My Tec de Monterrey days are officially over.

According to Hugo, there is a Mexican saying that basically says that anything more than 70 or 80% is vanity. I don't mean to be vain, but it appears as if I have landed very securely in the vanity arena.

I am currently spending some time at the beach in Ixtapa. I figured that I needed to make it to a Mexican beach at some point in time before leaving and this just seemed to work out. This little beach fairy tale will be over at the end of the week, and then this weekend, we have the semi-finals for flag football. My team wishes that I could change my flight so as to stay for the final game, but changing a ticket is pricy and plans have already been made. They will do fine without me.

My official departure from the beautiful land of Mexico is the 19th of May. You can look for me in Bluffton as soon as Saturday if you so wish.

I'll try to find some photos to put up as soon as possible so that you can see me enjoying my final days in Mexico.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Raros y Locos, Pero Divertido

I have my days all mixed up but I do believe that what I am about to write happened on Saturday. I have had my brain turned off for the past week and had to retrieve it from my book bag this morning, re-install, and boot back up before class. Luckily, I had some time this morning before I had to be in class.

Now, on to this past Saturday's events. First, some background information. Hugo is part of a family with 11 children. I don't know if I have written of it as of yet, but Hugo's father just recently turned 80 and they threw an extremely large shindig. Hugo was looking forward to it as my first debut with his family, but unfortunately, I believe I may have been back in the states that weekend. Needless to say, I didn't get to have my family debut.

This past Saturday, I got my chance. We drove to San Juan del Rio to the house of Hugo's brother Jose Luis. The entire trip, Carlo was talking about someone called Cooper. The night before we left, Hugo was prepping me for meeting his family, he told me that they say some very funny things and that I was going to die from laughing/smiling so much. I told him I just hoped I would be able to understand everything. When we first arrived, we walked around back and Jose Luis's daughter was swimming in a round inflatable pool, he was getting ready to grill, and things were in full out cookout mode. Jose Luis introduced himself to me as Hugo's brother--the most "Chingon" of the family. I was going to include a brief cuss word lecture but have decided to cut it out. The word Chingon stems from the word chingar--considered to this day one of the strongest words in the Mexican vocabulary. Chingon means more or less "the man". Jose Luis was telling me he was the coolest of the whole family. I through in a common saying about life using the word chingar (learned it in culture class) and was immediately Jose Luis's best friend.

I spent the afternoon in between Jose Luis grilling and talking to me about "real life" and Carla, Ale, and Gina. Jose Luis was insisting that "Tec life" or any Queretaro life is not "real life" and Gina was telling him how bad he had it. There was more food at the cookout that a normal Kaehr get together. He really had it bad off. He works for General Electric, designing airplane engines. I somehow doubt that he is the picture of "real Mexico". In a discussion about my preferences for women, he did reveal that the prettiest Mexican girls live in San Juan del Rio (everybody has their own idea of where the prettiest women are).

It was quite the experience, I definitely laughed a lot, and we had a lot of fun. On the way back to Queretaro, Carla and Hugo asked me what I thought. I told them that Hugo's whole family was strange and crazy (every one) but a lot of fun. It reminded me of my family.

Back to Cooper. He turned out to be a beautiful golden retriever. You see a picture of Carlo and Cooper together somewhere up top. The picture of me and two people are Jose Luis and Norma, his wife.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

The Long Awaited Part 2

Well, I feel as if I have waited quite long enough to post thesecond part to my day last Friday. A lot has happened since then. I haven't had school (Holy Week) and we have beenchilling about all week. In all the laziness, I haven't had the gumption to post anything. I don't think anything has really changed except for the fact that I'm not hungry and the timing seems a right (although a little late).After menudo and the train station. Carla, Hugo, and I went
back to the house and I took a fantastic nap (that may have been part of the past post). After my nap, we went, gassed up the van,
got some drinks, (insert of a picture of the Mexican version of Arnold Palmer). Down here, they apparently haven't heard about Arnold (his golfing prowess or his drink mixing abilities), and therefore, the drink is simply Iced Tea with Lemonade. Go figure.

We then picked up Ale and took off for the countryside. We actually drove past the place that Tadd bought his boots (ask Tadd for a private showing). On the way, I saw a stand that
sold a drink called Tepache. It is a drink made from pineapple peels and raw, unrefined sugar. You just put the two together (apparently in some secret fraction) let it ferment, and you have tepache. I have heard about it from a couple different sources and have been on the lookout for the past few months. I got close one day but couldn't get off of the bus. So I bought myself a liter of iced down tepache for 15 pesos.

We made it to a ranch and I played football with some kids for a little while. I have so far forgot to mention that it was hotter than I have ever been. We had the windows in the van open, I was drinking ice cold tepache, and was still dying of the heat. I tried to stay in the shade as much as possible once we got to the ranch.

The idea behind us being at the ranch is that Carla's school hosted a camp out for all the kids to kick off their vacation. They kids slept in tents (I helping set them up) while the adults and teachers that stayed slept in cabins (probably fair).

After everything had been set up, Hugo and I took off (Carla and Ale spent the night). We had a bachelor's/man night and later went out and I
had another Guajalote. I went to sleep and woke up in the morning feeling like I got hit by a truck. In fact, Hugo came in to get me at 11:00 because we had to leave before noon. I had a headache, my stomach was doing somersaults, by arms and legs ached, to sum it all up, I was sick. (For those of you who may recognize the symtoms, the only alcohol I had the day before was the tepache and it is very low in alcohol content.)

Hugo took me to a taco stand to have breakfast and I couldn't put down my two tacos. I drank some coke on the way to the camp but all around felt awful. When we made it to the camp, there were hundred of screaming kids running around being chased by their parents. It was fun to watch. After all the activities were over, the parents and kids left, and we stayed with some of the teachers to have la comida. It was quite the process with more food coming out of the
kitchen every couple minutes. As I was sick, I only had a little bit of food. I ended up laying on the couch with a cold wet rag on my forehead (thanks Claudia).

Ale was making fun of me. She kept on saying that after 4 months of eating whatever I wanted, my stomach finally had enough and turned on me. I told everyone I was weak (with the mandatory dejected facial expressions) and that made them all laugh.

What I didn't know, is that the Pandas Gigantes had a football game on Saturday (my flag
football team). It ended up that Paco, Hugo, Franco, and I took off early (not that early) to get ready for the game. We made it to the game 45 minutes late but the other team was late too. Hopped up on meds, I played and we smoked the pants off of the other team. They were in their twenties, should have been a lot faster, but couldn't play football worth poop. It was embarrassing for them.

I was feeling better after that but of course was hopped up on meds. Sunday was more of the same just a little less severe. But more on that later, this is getting long. To sum some things up, I don't think I will be eating Guajalotes or drinking Tepache for the remainder of my time here.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Menudo and Trains

I have no idea what is going on with me and this blog. I guess I can't be that out of sorts, this is the first time anything like this has happened. Basically, this is my second time doing this post. My fist one got lost somehow. When it says that the draft is automatically saved, I assumed that you could find it if you lost it. Isn't that the point of saving in the first place?

With that behind me, I am going to try to make the second telling of my day as eloquent and heart felt as possible. Some points may have changed and I apologize if this gets a little rushed. It is like the retelling of a joke to someone who only heard the punch line.

I apologize to everyone for being so boring lately. I have had exactly zero interesting things happen to me that were worthy to blog about. That all changed yesterday with a controversial (inner conflict only) call to go out with Ale and her friends last night knowing full-well that I had an exam this morning at 7.

It was a good night. I beat some Mexican's at pool, listened to a live band do covers of American songs (Are You Going to Be My Girl included), and had a nice chat with some people. If by chatting I mean yelling and saying "Que?" or "What?", then yes, it was chatting.

I had grand plans for getting up early this morning, do some last minute studying, and make my self dippy-eggs on top of a tortilla (I just saw Carla do it), but that all fell to pieces when I unconsciously turned of my early alarm, and woke up on my own at the normal time. I did have time however to shower and grab my normal breakfast, so that was a start.

The test went incredibly well, I made it out of class in under thirty minutes. I spent the next hour or so researching things that interest me and trying to stay plugged in to current events. I have a long way to go.

I was then picked up by Carla and Hugo and we went to the market. This one is called the Tepe market and I think it is the oldest one in Queretaro. That could be wrong but I definitely heard that said about some market today. I was granted the opportunity to try a dish called menudo. It is a hearty soup that the main ingredient is the chopped up pieces of all four of cows' stomachs. The smell is slightly different, the texture is slightly disturbing, the thought isn't entirely pleasing, but the taste isn't bad when you get past the three previous points. I ate my whole bowl and would eat it again.

On the way out, we saw a particularly appetizing sight of boiling octopus. I have decided to share the picture with all of your for maximum appetizing affect.

From the market, we went to the old train station. It has been turned into some type of culture center or something but still has some cool train stuff. They had do not touch signs everywhere. The second floor reminds me of the Ag Admin building at Purdue. It even has a ladder that leads to a trapdoor to the attic. Unfortunately, I didn't have the opportunity to explore.

From there, we went home, and I took a nap. Not particularly interesting but relaxing. Stay tuned for part 2.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Guajolotes y Cerveza

Guajolote is the word for turkey. Pavo also means turkey but for some reason, using pavo has a taboo on it. I think it makes you uneducated or something. I don't really know. Most people know what cerveza means but for those who don't, it is a very important word here that means beer. Those of you who have seen The Three Amigos know that back in the day, tequila was far more prominent than beer. I haven't seen the stats for today's alcohol preferences.

Apart from simply meaning turkey, apparently there is a food that has nothing to do with turkey that is called a guajolote. As you can see, it is a bread-based food that is filled with something else. I have taken a few different photos from different viewpoints for better comparing to turkey form. The back of the piece of bread is left in tact, so essentially, it is like a giant different shaped hot dog bun. They then put in potatoes, lettuce, salsa, cheese, cream, and whatever meat you want. The bread is interesting because I believe it is dipped in a red salsa, and then fried. It is absolutely delicious but makes your fingers incredibly greasy and dirty. Delicious.

On another note, Hugo recently went somewhere and there was a little boutique beer shop with novelty beers. He brought me back some presents. The first beer on the left is a beer called Cerveza Queretaro. How appropriate. It seems to be its own label. The one in the center is called Chili Beer. It is a Tecate product and actually has a chili pepper inside. Impressive, I know. The last beer on the left is a beer called Catrina. It comes from a brewery in Hidalgo (the next state over--not the horse). This is interesting because Catrina is very Mexican drawing. Its full name means the elegant skull. The first print of it is a skull with a very ornate hat for the time. The idea behind the drawing is that death doesn't discriminate between rich and poor. We are all going to die. Catrina is very representative of Dias de los muertos (Days of the dead).

Tuesday, April 5, 2011


I had an exciting weekend! Starting on Saturday morning, I got up early (5:00), taxied to tec, hopped on a bus with a bunch of foreign kids, headed east, and arrived at paradise.

As far as the pictures are concerned, I really don't know how to make them flow so they are slightly out of order.

Paradise happened to be a place called Tolantongo in the state of Hidalgo (the Mexican state, not the horse). It is famous for its hot springs.

We started the trip out by eating a delicious breakfast. All the fruit was fresh and the orange juice was legitimately fresh squeezed oranges. In a word--awesome. Top that off with some delicious coffee and chilaquiles verdes (spelled wrong but is basically fried tortilla, chicken, and green salsa).

We then trekked down to the launch pad for the zip line. It was my first time and it was awesome! Notice the picture with all the zipline get-up.

There were two main caves that the hot water came from. The top one was dark, hot, and reminded me a lot of a temascal. We only lacked a chaman and a whole lot more heat. It was great. The other cave was bigger and had another cave inside it. There was a current that you could jump into and get spit out 15 feet later. It was really cool.

After that, it rained and we ate lunch. I thought it was that much cooler for the rain but there were a lot of whiners on the trip. We swam in the river (warm water), sat in its waterfalls, etc.

After that, team games were planned (we were in teams based upon our bandanna color. (I usually don't wear a yellow bandanna around my neck.) But we skipped game time to chill in a series of pools that cascaded down into the other ones. It was glorious.

We had a bonfire minus smores (huge downer) and then went to bed. Sunday, we went to another hot springs. It was a pool about 20 feet deep. We spent our time climbing up on the rock wall and jumping in from various heights with water skill we possessed. I actually ranked in the top 3 for aerial tricks. It felt good to be good at something--I should spend more time with these people.

We walked some more, ate some more, and then got shipped back to Queretaro.

Good weekend!

Friday, April 1, 2011

Meet Melissa

I have been waiting to reveal for the pain of having to re-explain after it all fell apart. However, things have gotten slightly more serious and it seems to make sense to let you guys know.

I realize that some of your greatest fears has been that I would meet someone down here and never return. Part of that fear has been realized and I am still coming home this summer (you do the math).

In fact, I have met many, many people and have an entirely difficult time remembering their names when I talk to them. However, some people that I have met, I have developed some good friendships with and can remember their name on a fairly regular basis.

One of those people is a girl named Melissa. (No picture because I couldn't find one to do her justice.) Don't worry everyone, she speaks English. Well, she speaks Australian but I think that's pretty close. She also speaks Afrikon (could be spelled incorrectly), the language spoken in South Africa. She didn't know Spanish when she came but she is doing surprisingly well and like most women (or any other person in my life) can most likely communicate much better than I.

Our relationship has developed to the point that I hope she can come visit and meet everyone this summer sometime. As she is from Australia and will be returning this summer, if she does make it to visit everyone, we may have to do some good coordinating getting everyone to meet her. I would hate for her to make the trip and only meet a few people. We need to drown this girl with family. You know, just overwhelm her.

I'm running out of good ideas and the joke is running thin, so....April Fool's! I thought about doing a much more in-depth post without saying April Fool's until a later post, but hey, I didn't want to worry you too bad.

In all reality, I am still very single. Single and searching...But having a great time doing it!