Last Saturday the school treated us to a day at Club Campestre, one of the country clubs in Cali. Although the principals and director belong to another club, the administrative assistant and the community affairs director belong to this one. The big yellow school bus picked us up at our apartment around 10 and took us just down the road to the club. It is a beautiful place. We had a million choices of things to do thrown at us. After a short tour of the place, David decided to play Squash before playing some tennis while I went my first Rumba class at the gym for about $12.000 pesos, about $6-7 USD. Normally I would have run out of the room embarrassed by my lack of coordination in dance, but all the women with their Latin flare around me actually made me feel better because I KNOW I will never be able to move like them, so looking like a complete idiot was just fine. I was with the beat about 40% of the time, but man was it a workout. I thought time was standing still. An hour of that and I was done for. Some of us went and sat by the pool, although I foolishly forgot my suit, so I sat in the shade and read a bit before everyone met for lunch.
After lunch 6 of us along with Sebastian decided to go horseback riding. Now, if 1. you know me and 2. you are anything like David you just burst into laughter at the thought of me riding a horse. Although I was the second to least experienced rider, I survived, albeit barely. I told the gentlemen helping us that I was a beginner and I wanted a horse “muy tranquilo”. They told us they were all horses for beginners and my friend Amanda (who speaks MUCH better Spanish) said that Diego had told her Serpentina would be very calm and I could ride him. I had my suspicions given that it was the BIGGEST horse there, but took her and Diego’s word for it. I got on pretty smoothly. Ok that’s a lie. I almost fell of the opposite side of Serpentina having swung myself up too hard and almost choked the horse. And then Serpentina was walking off on his own and kept playing with the reins in his mouth and bobbing his head all over. Diego readjusted my hands on the reins at least 6 times before we were on our way. Once we started Serpentina and I were getting along just fine. Others had their horses trotting on the trail, but we stayed slow, UNTIL we got to a steep part in the trail and we were bringing up the end of the line so Serpentina picked up the pace a little. No one prepares you for how much you are going to bounce when a horse trots, but I was surprisingly ok with it. Then came the point when we got to an arena of sorts where they decided to let the horse’s trot and gallop, which they would all do after Amanda’s horse, the leader (and Serpentina’s mother) started. That was frightening. I tried to pull the reins to stop or slow down but it didn’t work very well. I managed some “No me gusta"s, and luckily after a time or two around the other guide pulled Serpentina and I to the side for a rest while others went on trotting their way around. The rest of the ride was uneventful (thank goodness) other than my horse kicking Sebastian’s horse who was much more discontent with it’s reins than mine, and apparently who none of the other horses like. I even managed to get off the horse without falling or hurting myself or the horse. Towards the end of our journey, Amanda shared with me that Diego had said that Serpentina was calm because he wanted HER to ride him since she was more experienced and the horse was actually kind of crazy. Go figure. But in the end, Diego told me that I did very well, and I was left with a very sore butt for a couple days.
After some ice cream we made our way back home. Olga and Matilde said that they would put our names in whenever we’d like and we can go up to 12 times a year and 3 times in a month. They also said if friends or family visited, they would be more than happy to put their names on the list to visit either with us or while we are at work. Just one more reason for you all to visit!