I have left the "How it all began" section hanging for awhile, and at some point I'll get to my experiences studying abroad in the DR and Argentina. For now, I'll share this group I made on Facebook after I came back from the DR, which is the first inkling of Rio Gringa. This week, the group surpassed 3,000 members, so I thought it would be an appropriate time to share it. Just a word of warning: if you never lived in the DR, most of it won't make much sense.
For those who lived in (and loved the DR) or actual dominicans who the rest of us just aspire to be like.
You know you've lived in the Dominican Republic when...
1. You use words like vaina, chin, and jevi as a part of essential vocabulary, and don't care if other people don't know what you're talking about.
2. you've been waken up by the aguacate man.
3. you fear the dreaded news "se fue la luz..."
4. ...because you've showered with a bucket when there's no water.
5. you love the bandera. and pica pollo.
6. Brugal and Presidente did, do and will always make you happy.
7. You befriended or were friends with people who befriended street kids, street people, or schitzo street crazies.
8. e' pa' adelante que vamo'!
9. mofongo mix makes your mouth water.
10. you've contracted some sort of amoeba or parasite.
11. the sight of a white belt makes you snicker.
12. you still find yourself checking your outfit and accessories to make sure you match, down to the color of your earrings.
13. you are familiar with the term "sankipanki" and have either done it or had it done to you.
14. you loved having an inversor, or wish you had one.
15. you don't think it's unnatural to sing while traveling on public transportation, and think its weird when buses don't have the radio on full blast.
16. you know at least the basics of merengue and bachata and can burst into song of many random merengue, bachata, salsa, and reggaeton hits.
17. entonce mamita a que tu quiere
18. you know what a carro publico means and fondly remember being squished between a fat women, her groceries, and a skeevy little dominican man in the backseat.
18. in spanish, you refer to "the bus" as the guagua.
19. if you're a girl, you remember mentally prepping yourself before leaving the house to prepare for a barrage of piropos.
20... piropos have made you either extremely uncomfortable, oddly pleased with yourself, or made you burst out laughing.
21. you classify yourself as: rubio/a (even if you're not blonde), india, morena, or one of those crazy inbetween tones because dominicans just love to define race, but never, ever call themselves negros.
22. you've rode in the back of a pickup truck.
23. you've driven or been driven on the malecon in the middle of the night or coming home at 6am.
24. the colmado is the center of the universe and you desperately miss being able to get dulce de leche and limon chips and presidente at any hour.
25. you love the MOTOCONCHO.
26.you have spent a good part of your dominican social life seated in a plastic chair on the street.
27. you could always say, "i'm out of minutes" if you didn't want to call back one of your dominican stalkers. but you could always go to the colmado for a new tarjeta to call your papi.
28. you've used the "viper" method to communicate.
29. you miss the yelling cobradores on bolivar and independencia, especially the boca chica guy.
31. you've eaten, and enjoy, chivo. mmm.
32. your spanish lacks "s" in many words.
33. you've had first hand experiences with cucarachas, ratas and tarantulas.
34. 'ta full y ta' bueno/a make sense especially when talking about a good club or a hot guy.
35. don't be a mamaguevo. but if you're lucky you'll get a mamasota.
36. you have heard someone yell, "es un abuso!!"
37. duarte, sanchez, mella, 27 de febrero= la patria, and streets in every major city and town. george washington, abraham lincoln, winston churchill. also streets, not la patria.
38. boca chica, and other such beaches mean: pescao, platano frito, jonnycake, and cueros x 1000 with fat gringos.
39. you know and LOVE festival presidente.
40. maceta papi maceta
41. necio, nitido. chevere, chulo. concho, cono, conchole. all necessary words to communicate with a dominican.
42. you got pushed out of the way by 30 people trying to get on the guagua, but once you're on, people will hold your binder, chicken, or baby if you have to stand up and they're sitting down.
43. "vamo a hacer coro" does not mean we're going to make a choir but actually probably involves drinking and travesuras.
44. you've gone out on the street to drink with everyone in your neighborhood during an apagon, because there's nothing else to do.
45. no te quilles mami! = no estes encojonada = don't be balled = don't be mad
47. traffic laws are purely optional, and honking at intersections at night is much more common that stopping at lights.
48. mangu: the staple of the dominican diet, for breakfast, lunch or dinner, with cheese or meat or onions on top. mmm.
49. batido de mango, lechosa, or pina. as good as sex? probably.
50. you've eaten so many platanos you practically have turned into one.
ya tu saaabe.