Easter Sunday – only 1 1/2 hours to church…!

Today was the first “real” Sunday we’ve had off since coming to Mexico.  We were off last Sunday but so exhausted from school we simply slept in.

We knew we wanted to celebrate the risen Christ with fellow believers on Easter Sunday, so we googled “english speaking church” and found the Union Evangelical Church on the south end of town.  No problem – we’d simply take the Metro south (to the end of the line) and then a short taxi ride to church.

Didn’t quite happen!  We got to the end of the line okay, but we were correctly judged to be gringos and got the “scenic” tour to church! Instead of heading south, we got to see new skylines of Mexico, around the castle in Chapultepec park and then a lovely drive back down south on the beautiful Paseo de la Reforma.  It only took 45 minutes (and 150 pesos – about $12) but we’d given ourselves plenty of time and everything worked out fine.

Take a look at our google map to see our little “detour”!

We discovered the Union Church was started in 1873.  It’s a beautiful church and Pastor Lance eloquently stated the essence of the Christian faith in the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

By the way – it only took a 10 – 12 minute ride back to the Metro station!


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Good Friday 7.5 earthquake!

earthquakeI was sitting at my desk overlooking the patio of our Casa when I first noticed a very, very gentle rolling motion.  I said to Leslie “Earthquake”!  It gently got stronger and frankly – I was fascinated by the experience.  It seemed to last for a couple of minutes but time becomes meaningless in an earthquake.  To me, it felt like I was riding on top of a bowl of Jello.

During my Jello ride, I continued listening to a very interesting ESL teaching video off the internet…

A couple minutes later Leslie called to me and said “Come – look at this”.  I took off my headphones, followed her to the lounge room (we’re on the second floor) and looked down at the street.  Everybody from all the buildings on the street (plus all the guests at the Casa) were outside milling around on our narrow, one way street!  I guess we were the only ones who stayed put in our room!

After living in southern California for 30+ years, I guess it’s been ingrained in me – don’t run outside during an earthquake!  Stuff will fall on you!

So I’ve just finished my 30+ minute internet teaching video (excellent teaching on controlled practice!), googled the earthquake and found out it was a big 7.5 earthquake near Acapulco.  That’s big.  Don’t know yet about damages, but from what I experienced here, I wouldn’t think Mexico City had any substantial damage.

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CELTA – we transferred from the bullet train to the express train…


Leslie’s 2″ binder – and we’re only half way through CELTA! This is just her notes and course handouts binder. She has another 2″ binder with all her lesson plans…

We knew the CELTA program was intense before it began.  We’d read blogs that grown women cry in the 3rd week.  It’s true!  Into the second week Leslie said she’d never be able to continue the pace we’d been on.  We candidates (10 of us) were averaging maybe 4 – 5 hours sleep per night – including weekends.  It’s hard to convey the intensity of the course.

I was recently asked if I was “enjoying” our class.  I said NO emphatically!  But that wasn’t the right question to ask.  CELTA is a fabulous program and I now understand why it is so highly regarded around the world in the ESL community.  We are fire-hosed with information and are expected to implement that knowledge immediately in our teaching sessions (TP’s).  After each teaching session we are critiqued by our peer candidates (frank and humbling) as well as by our tutors (who are master teachers).

CELTA has two courses – the 4 week intensive and the 16 week (or so) extensive program for working individuals.  In two weeks with the intensive class we caught up to the extensive class (which had started in February).  We asked if we could switch to the extensive class and our request was accepted.

Our new classmates are primarily full-time teachers.  Even though we only meet on Saturdays, the workload for these teachers (who have families and all the other time commitments of life) is intense.  It’s brutal for them as well.  We got home around 9 pm last Saturday night after being in school all day.

But for Leslie and me, we finally slept in last Sunday and have tried to catch up on our sleep these past few days.  It’s been great getting to bed at 10 for a change!  We’ve even taken time this week to visit the world class Anthropological Museum and the historic downtown of Mexico City (Zocalo).

And – hopefully – we’ll have the time now to keep our blog up to date!


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