Saturday, March 3, 2007

Max Greuey

On Max's first day with us he mentioned that he was lucky to be able to find the on button on a computer. Therefore, I thought it would be safe to tell stories on so that you all might find the same enjoyment I have found in watching him do life here. Max arrived 4 days ago. From the moment we picked him up from the airport he has attempted to speak English to every Spanish speaking person he has come across. It is like he thinks that if he talks loud and slow they will somehow understand what he is saying. However, watching him try and speak Spanish is even funnier. For any of you that have seen the Friends episode where Pheobie is teaching Joey a foreign language, it is much like that. Through the episode Pheobie will say a word such as llama and Joey would say something like Helezader. With Max it is the same way. We can say a phrase in Spanish and when he repeats it is nothing like the original sentence. It is cute because he tries so hard.
The next story I HAVE to tell is about Honduran driving. The day we picked Jen up from the airport Max informed her that her driving was in need of some improvement. This came up right after she went to pass someone on a turn. Hondurans drive 3 wide here all the time. Max just wasn't quite prepared for that. The next time we headed for town Jen offered Max the keys and HE TOOK THEM. She mentioned that we only had 30 minutes to get to where we needed to be and he told us to get in and hold on and boy he wasn't kidding. AND he thought Jen was crazy. Lets just say we made it in plenty of time and Max was driving 3 wide before you could say boo. Nobody on the road would have been able to tell that he wasn't a true Honduran driver. He fit in well.
I do enjoy watching him with the people here. He is a typical small town boy. He waves to all the people on the streets. He wants to talk to people and call them Sr. (here is when we get back into the speaking English to Spanish speaking people) He is constantly concerned that our driving Gracie down the road is stirring up dust that will cover the clean clothes people have hung up to dry. He invites our grounds keeper in to eat lunch with us or wants to share his candy/peanuts/etc. with the guards. It is refreshing to watch someone come in and totally accept the people of Honduras. He sees them as equals and wants to befriend them all. It is fun to watch.
Finally, as lots of you know Max is a bit of a neat freak. He likes life to be organized and clean. Things here are far from that. I spent the first full day with Max hearing phrases like, "its hard to tell what you have, no better than things are organized" or "I bet you waste a lot of money buying things you already have but can't find." He has many fix it ideas for how we can be better organized. Thankfully, all those ideas are things he is willing to do himself!:) Also his first morning here he went in to wake Jen up out of bed. He informed her that people die in bed and she had better get up. Did I mention that he did this on our only day off and our only chance to sleep in. Went over well!:)
I should tell you that although we like to give him a hard time he has been great with the kids. They love having him here. The first night he was here they had him by the hand leading him around or giving him lots of hugs. At one point he sat down and had about 5 of them on his lap in a matter of seconds. They fight over who he is sitting beside for meals and who he is going to play with. Furthermore, we adults are enjoying having him around almost as much as the kids. He is a good reminder of home. He acts just like my father and the other men in my life would act. He is handy and a fix-it. The girls joked on his first day here that we were like grandfather and granddaughter the way I followed him around all day. I was his "personal assistant." It is nice to have a reminder from home. It is nice to have him here and watch him do life outside his comfort zone. It is nice to share this with others that have the same background as I do. All in all we think we will just keep him here.

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