Just an hour ago, 25 of us stood gathered outside an electronics store´s windows, watching with bated breath as Portugal and Brazil went head to head for 90 minutes. Every close shot or impressive move arousing similar reactions from each of us, gringo and Guatemalan alike. Soccer, Football or Futbol? No matter how it is pronounced, this game functions as an international medium for cross-cultural connections; an automatic bond between people who seem to share nothing else but a genuine love and excitement for the thrill of the game.

       While at first this was an uncertain world full of unfamiliar faces, I cannot overstate the impact a shared love of football has had on integrating us into the community. Almost every conversation in our first few days related to the game in some way or another. Now, our neighbor Anthony comes by every evening to give us an update on what happened that day in the World Cup, while the kids in the town yell our names from the bridge to come “juega pelota.” Not only has the sport helped us feel accepted, but it brings genuine smiles and laughter to the kid´s faces. Especially when the tall gringos trip on the ball or bounce it on their heads out of reach…

          The game has led us to be welcomed into neighbors kitchens, to sit, as the mother cooked and the flies swarmed, and watch the US keep thier hopes alive in the last minute against Algeria. Truly a world´s sport, futbol will continue to be our staple connection into this unfamiliar world, helping us meet others and establish the friendships needed to conduct accurate and informative research.

Vamos los Estados Unidos!
Kyle Leonard
6/25/2010 12:27:36 pm

Ah I loved this update!! From here on out I'm going to watch the games in a different light. Purely amazing the way the world can connects.

6/25/2010 04:38:50 pm

Wow.. That's truly awesome. that something like Soccer/futbol can make people welcome each other is truly awesome! you guys are lucky :D
~Nat justartison

Sir Smitchellton
6/27/2010 02:25:49 pm

Yes! So true. I've been waiting for the footie post. Glad you guys found el partido. Knew it wouldn't take long. Sorry about England and US though. Good thing Spain's still in! Shine on, bruv.

Haley Priebe
6/28/2010 05:29:43 am

haha, I've been wondering if you guys would find a way to keep up with the World Cup. So sad about England and the US!!!

Also, in response to your previous post, I don't think it's a good idea to name your chicken. Remember the tragic story of Mouks?? I feel, Harold could leave a similar scar/it's just weird to eat your pets.

On a more serious note, It sounds like you guys are having the most incredible experience. I am very jealous of all the insight you're gaining and of the personal growth that you will gain from this experience. Carlos sounds like such a hero, and from Zach's post the interviews sound like they're everything you could have hoped for - so interesting about the sink hole. (In fact, that might make an interesting tie to Haiti's recovery and your support of Fonkoze.)

Anyway, I feel funny staying in touch through blog post, but I am glad that you guys are doing well and cannot wait to hear more.


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