Last Thursday was an exceptionally happy day for me. My school puts on a huge 4th of July celebration for the sisters and the American teachers. That included Julie, myself, my director and one other sister. We were treated like royalty with front row seats for all of the presentations.
The morning started out with my boss putting a 4th of July Mickey pin on my shirt. Everyone told me happy 4th of July and the girls sang the blessings song to me which is typically reserved for birthdays. Hence, one of my girls made me a birthday card. It was really sweet. What was even more fun is that the girls were all dressed up in their costumes for the show. Kinder put on a show and dance related to American TV shows. One class dressed up like I dream of Genie, another like Wednesday from The Adams Family, cowgirls from Bonanza, 50s girls from Happy Days, and sailors from Gilligan´s Island. They were too cute.
After giving all of my classes I headed over to primary school and the 4 of us Americans were received with applause by our colleagues. The multipurpose room was decorated with red white and blue and there was a BBQ awaiting us as well as an enormous cake that the cleaning and personel staff bought for us. How sweet (no pun intended). I stuffed myself with salad, hotdogs and chorizos (Peruvian style brats). I know I technically only need to eat 300 calories more a day but I indulged a bit.
After lunch we headed to the patio where all the girls who were born in the US marched around with the American flag and the teachers sang the national anthem. The choir sang Proud to Be and American (which actually made me tear up. Not so much the lyrics but the fact that everyone had put so much love and time into presenting all of this to us to make us feel at home.) and another Hallelujah song.
At the end of the presentations, a group of mothers came over and presented us with a carved watermellon that looked like a flag on the back. It was full of strawberries, blueberries, bananas, and RASPBERRIES! Huzzah. Julie and I went into the principal´s hallway at the end of everything to get some of the fruit. We were both so happy to be eating raspberries. I wonder where they found them or if someone brought them back from the states. Ahh the little things. Anyway, after the presentation of the watermelon, all of the girls born in the States got a balloon and we all released them at the same time. What a fun tradition!
This 4th of July was by far my best 4th of July in Peru and right now my all time favorite. It is one thing to celebrate with your fellow compatriots but to be given a show and celebration from people who want to make you feel at home is like nothing I have ever experienced. I have such a feeling of gratitude towards my coworkers and my school. I could not have lucked out more in finding the job that I did. I am beyond grateful.
I hope everyone back in the States and fellow ex-pats alike had a wonderful 4th of July. Feel free to comment and let me know how your 4th of July went! I would love to hear about it!