Sunday, July 4, 2010

A little bit of this, a little bit of that, and a lotta laundry

Sorry for the long period of time in between posts.  I have been focusing all of my attention on my Human Trafficking paper so I can finally go out with my training teammates, spend time with my family, learn spanish... basically, be a Peace Corps volunteer.  As of tonight I have finally finished that paper!  If anyone would like to read and edit it for me, I will be forever in your debt.  I have one month to perfect it.

As for training, it has been dragging on a bit long.  I hear everyone has the same complaint around this time.  We sit through a lot of presentations, do a team building activity every 10 minutes, and find little time to ourselves.  Most of the material is over theoretical methodology.  For example, we did one of those long surveys to find out what kind of teaching style you prefer (what I deem as equivalent to astrology for the social sciences).  Most of my frustration is just my wish to get to site as soon as possible and get started doing some work.

Of course, it is not all frustrating.  I have been working with a couple of other volunteers to do some youth activities with some young children here in my town of Chacrasana.  Our first week we made bracelets with string and played some names games.  Last week we taught the kids how to make sorbet using bags, ice, salt, and fruit juice.  It didn't work as planned (too much juice and not enough ice) but we all had fun dancing to pop music while shaking the bags.  This week we intend to do a movie night, hopefully with the movie Pay It Forward if I can find it in spanish, and then discuss it afterwards.  The group practically doubled between week one and two so I hope, and expect, for more this week.  It feel great working with them.  Some of the children live in really sparse conditions in a makeshift town above Chacrasana - living in fiberboard housing without running water, electricity, or gas.

Last weekend we had the opportunity to head to Lima and check out the sites and sounds... We had fun and the best part was watching a world cup game while we had some pizza.  This weekend we visited a shelter close to Chosica and I had the opportunity to play soccer and tag with a bunch of kids.  I was having so much fun I actually missed meeting up with my group for another presentation.

Besides training and small group excursions, I have been spending an unusual amount of time doing laundry.  I think I will probably miss two things the most while here. 1) cold showers and 2) washers.  It is a ridiculously complicated process to wash your clothing by hand.  You have to make sure you don't wash socks in the same water as a towel (so you don't put your foor crud on your face) and you have to rinse everything twice, which involves draining and refilling the sink a million times.  My hands were raw and hurt the whole next day but I have clean clothes... I can say this... I am now wearing my clothes a lot lot longer than before!
 Until next time! Nos Vemos!

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