Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Summer (the season) (07/09/09)
TITLE: Monte Sión
By Phee Paradise
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Itâ€™s silly to sing that kidâ€™s song, but I canâ€™t help it. Iâ€™m going home for the summer. Going home.
Iâ€™ve been dreaming about tomorrow since September; the plane leaving L.A., getting closer every hour; the mountains and volcanoes with Guatemala City spread out between them; Mother and Daddy and Janet waiting at the airport. Weâ€™ll drive out to AmatitlĂˇn, through the town square with the Catholic church and giant ceiba tree, across the bridge and along the winding road beside the lake. Iâ€™ll see the front of our house, if I look closely, just before we get to the entrance to Monte SiĂłn. Then through the corn fields and weâ€™ll be home. Iâ€™ll kick off my shoes in the entry and feel the warm tile on my bare feet. Iâ€™ll go into my room and lay down on my bed, my own pillow at last. Iâ€™ll look through the picture window at the castle across the lake. On the way to the kitchen Iâ€™ll stop at the piano to play a scale, then Iâ€™ll help the maid shuck the corn Daddy just picked. Weâ€™ll eat corn on the cob with hamburgers and weâ€™ll have warm gingerbread for dessert. For breakfast, Mother will put slices of pineapple or papaya on our plates. Then Iâ€™ll go see Don Chemaâ€™s wife and eat tortillas hot off the grill.
Itâ€™s not that I donâ€™t like American food, or Aunt Doris and Uncle Bill who have been wonderful to me. Theyâ€™ve made me part of the family and Kathy has treated me like a sister. After school we go out to the pool together to lie in the sun and read until weâ€™re hot enough to roll over into the water and swim till our finger tips are wrinkled. But the pool at Monte SiĂłn has a waterfall and big rocks to sit on to soak up the sun. I canâ€™t wait to dive into the green water and show Don Chema how Iâ€™ve improved.
Iâ€™m going to pretend Iâ€™m little again and climb the mango tree where we used to play house. Iâ€™m going to stand on the porch and look across the lake and when I see the rain coming Iâ€™ll run down to the clothes line and help Mother bring them in before they get wet. Iâ€™m going to walk in the front yard and eat jocotes right off the trees. Iâ€™m going to play Monopoly and Clue with Janet. Iâ€™m going to ask Mother and Daddy to tell me everything about everyone I havenâ€™t seen for a year.
When the camps start, Janet and I will run the store. Weâ€™ll talk to everyone in Spanish while we sell ice cream and candy and theyâ€™ll think weâ€™re charming. When thereâ€™s no camp, weâ€™ll play ping pong in the Lodge. Iâ€™ll take walks to all my favorite places: past the kapok trees where I saw a tarantula, through the fogata with the rows of seats around the campfire, up the hill behind the boysâ€™ cabins where I can see the whole lake, then Iâ€™ll find the secret spot that no one knows but me.
Iâ€™ll visit friends Iâ€™ve known since we were babies. Weâ€™ll laugh at private jokes and reminisce about roller skating and playing hideâ€™nâ€™seek at boarding school. Weâ€™ll sing songs like â€śUn Elefanteâ€ť and â€śCon Cristo en su Barco.â€ť Weâ€™ll talk about who liked whom and whoâ€™s still in Guatemala. Weâ€™ll pity everyone who isnâ€™t a missionary kid and pretend weâ€™re not stuck up.
Iâ€™m packing all my dresses since I canâ€™t wear shorts. The dresses are too short because thatâ€™s how everyone wears them in the States. When I wear them I donâ€™t look different, and no one knows Iâ€™m an MK if I donâ€™t talk about Guatemala. But no one at home thinks Iâ€™m weird. A bunch of teens on a mission trip from the States will come, but Iâ€™ll be the one who knows the country. Iâ€™ll tell them what they can eat and what they shouldnâ€™t say and what to wear when we climb Pacaya. Iâ€™ll be their interpreter and theyâ€™ll think Iâ€™m great.
After they go home it will be just us again and everything will be perfect. Iâ€™m going home.
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