We are beginning our third week at Nido de Aguilas . The school is about the size of three football fields, which is considerably larger than TCS. Back in Atlanta, every grade had two classes. Here, every grade has five or six. I’ve been put in 4C, and Jack is in 2D. There are people from all over the world in my class. I have a few boys from Chile. A girl from Denmark. And a girl who has just moved here from Turkey. My brother has even more countries represented in his class. There is a boy from Australia.There is a girl from Boston, a boy from Asia and a kid from Paraguay. My teacher is from Ecuador, but speaks perfect English. All the classes are in English, but I have Spanish class every day.
My mom has absolutely no idea what to give us for breakfast, let alone what to pack in our lunches, so we’ve been getting hot lunch at the school cafeteria. It is normally not that good. For instance, one day there was this weird fried meat and I couldn’t tell if it was chicken or fish. And for dessert there was blueberry-flavored foam. But the Pizza Fridays I can live with. A slice of pizza is 1000 pesos which is equivalent to two dollars in the States.
We wear uniforms at Nido. It is a little disappointing because I don’t get to do any back-to-school shopping, but then again, they are not the scratchy skirt and collared shirt that you would expect from a uniform. We actually get to wear sweatpants and t-shirts that say “Nido de Aguilas” across the front. They are very strict though. You’re not allowed to wear any non-Nido sweatshirts and if you have any non-Nido clothes on, you need to cover them with something “Nido” and you can’t take them off. There is also a swim suit you have to wear for swimming (Nido has its own gigantic swimming pool).
We started after school activities last week. Nido has everything from introductory golf to cooking. I’m taking Climbing and Trekking on Mondays. Introductory Golf on Tuesdays. Art Reinforcement on Wednesdays. And Girl Scouts on Thursdays. Nido doesn’t have options for Fridays. (I don’t exactly know why.) I was a little disappointed to learn that Girl Scouts don’t sell cookies here. I’m going to need to ask my friends back in the states to mail me some Thin Mints.
At recess, instead of your teacher choosing a playground and sitting down to watch you play and make sure you don’t get hurt, they just say, “it is recess time, go explore the school.” You are allowed to go to the art room, to the library,or you can play on the playground. You can also use recess as time to catch up with your friends in other classes (not that I have many of those yet). And at the end of the school day, instead of waiting for your mom or dad to arrive, they just say, “Goodbye Madie.” and let you leave. You can play soccer with your friends (which Jack does every day) while waiting for your mom or dad to arrive. Nobody escorts you to and from the buses either.
I take the bus every morning. It picks me up right outside the giant gate to my house. (I think it might crash if it went down our 20-foot almost vertical driveway). The only bad part about school is that the bus picks me up at 6:53 a.m. and school starts at 7:45. Back in Atlanta, we were not even our of beds until 7:45. My mom tried to take a picture of us getting on the bus the first morning, but it barely came out it was so dark out.
I was really, really sad to leave TCS, but I think we may have found something that is (almost) better!