Saturday, October 15, 2011

Talent Show!

Friday nights at the JC are always hoppin, but last night was especially so! But let me back up. We had class in the morning, and then a service project. It was actually the third time we've done our service project. The Bentleys are the service couple here in charge of humanitarian activities, so one of the things they have organized for us to do is make hygiene kits for local charities. We put in towels, soap, toothbrushes, toothpaste, and combs. Like I said, this was our third session of packing, and we've gotten a lot done! With over 80 pairs of fast and willing hands, it's more of a challenge to find enough things to do than it is to get a lot done. Our goal is to make 10,000 kits. After the service project, we had a little bit of time to kill in the center. On Fridays, we're not allowed to go out to the city until after 3 pm, then we have to be back before nightfall, by 5:30. The reason we can't go out before 3 is that Friday is the main day that Muslims go to the mosques to pray. They can go any day to do their prayers, but the Friday noon prayer is the one that is required to be at the mosque. So, there is a lot of religious tension and crowds of people that security wants us to avoid. That being said, we had about two hours after the humanitarian project was finished until we could go out. We all just chatted, blogged, watched movies, etc. anything to avoid homework (what else is new?). Then I went out to the city with Matty, Nick, Izak, and two of the professors' kids, Joe Ludlow and John Harper. Side Note: One thing that is so fun about living in the center is that it's all students, but then you have your professors and their families. We love hanging out with the kids and playing games with them, especially Wii Just Dance! And the professors' wives and the service sisters are like our moms; they even bake us cookies sometimes. We love them :) end side note We didn't have too much time to wander around the city, so we just walked through the valley up to Lion's gate, then made our way through the city to Damascus gate, then back down the valley and up again to the Center. It was nice to just get out for a little bit, and the boys were fun to be around! It's definitely a different experience going out in the city with boys rather than girls. First of all, whenever I go out with girls, there is usually a set plan of things we are going to see and we all have an understanding of the plan. With boys, there isn't. Second of all, shopkeepers always talk to us girls and try to get us to come into into their stores. But with boys, I don't think I got a single comment from shopkeepers. It was great! Apart from those perks, they're just fun people to hang out with. I'm constantly amazed by the quality of people here. I feel so lucky and blessed to have the opportunity to become friends with them.

Speaking of amazing people, tonight was the "informal" talent show where all these amazing people showed us funny things they can do! It was quite inspiring to say the least. A little long, but fun because so many people were able to participate. We had dancing, singing, elbow-licking, short films, slideshows of cat pictures (yes, this actually happened and it was hilarious), skits, improv, flexibility, and a demonstration of how to make our beds. Overall, the evening was entertaining, enlightening, educational, and energetic. I did something as well. I didn't really want to sing, so I rapped. Yes, you read that correctly. I, Cassandra Pelton, the whitest girl on the face of the planet, let the beat drop and busted a flow. My inspiration was Nicki Minaj's song "Super bass," where she raps and then sings the chorus. It's a fun song, so Whitney (roomie), Melissa, and I played around the with rap part last week (while procrastinating our midterm paper for Professor Bashir Bashir). The fruit of our labor was pretty sweet- an entire rap about the boys of the JC. There are only about 20 so it wasn't too hard to fit them all in. We just tried to fill it with funny inside-the-center jokes and make it entertaining. Then, all I needed was music to rap/sing to. Luckily, Izak is a very talented guitarist and seems to like being friends with me, so he played for me. He was so awesome. I definitely could not have done my little song without him. I was actually pretty nervous about the song! I wasn't sure if people would think it was funny or not, but I got a pretty positive response! Everyone thought the rap was pretty clever, and even though I was giggling so hard that I couldn't sing, they thought the chorus sounded good too. Yay for a successful rapping debut! I'll probably end my career on a high note.

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