Tortillas not arepas
Posted by sebastianbrown on February 25, 2010
For the second night in a row the group of eleven Nob Hill residents met for a couple hours of good food, mutual support, hanging out, and of course, English. Nearly each member brought some sort of food or drink to share. Besides arguing that my home made arepas (a Colombian/slightly thicker version of tortillas) were nothing more than tortillas and that I shouldn’t get away with calling them by some exotic sounding name, the group enjoyed the good food and conversation.
After checking in with highlights from the last week, we tried out the support action tool for the first time as a group. Andrea started off with mentioning that she had seen a bunch of cop cars parked across the street the night before. With her connections to the local police force Gretchen from C-SAFE informed us that a 11 year old girl had been raped by two older residents from Quebec Terrace, the apartment complex directly adjacent to Nob Hill. Naturally, the conversation then turned toward safety in their apartment community, with most members giving stories of either being attacked/robbed or knowing someone who had been in just the past year.
It was great to have David there for the first time, a single man from Sudan–as well as the group’s only non-Spanish speaker. Instead of feeling isolated, he was eager to help practice English with the others–and of course the group welcomed the opportunity. So to wrap up the group went around presenting themselves to him entirely in English. While some were able to say little more than their name and their address and others briefly talked about their past day at work, all were respectful of the different levels and felt comfortable offering whatever they were able.
We’ll continue forward with Monday night’s class and hopefully more good eats!