Tuesday, June 16, 2009

A Dia en the Life of a Peruvian Peacecordian in Training!

Alrighty everyone... This is the entry where I tell you what the daily routine is for me and the rest of the 36 of us here in Peru for Cuerpo de Paz. Just to give you an idea:

I live in a little town called Yanacoto which is Quechua (the most commonly spoken indigenous language in this country) for Black One/Thing. Our training center is in Chaclacayo which is about 30 minutes by walking, then bus (combi), then walking again. Other volunteers live in (I believe) 4 other nearby towns. Yanacoto has the most volunteers living in it at the moment (14 or us!) and is (in the best way to describe it) a sprawling mass of houses with dirt roads built up a hill. It´s as if someone decided to build a house and then it grew and in order to expand people had to just keep building houses up into the hills. There are churches, a couple cement places to play soccer/basketball and of course.. and my favorite.. a swing set!! In order to organize the town, it´s sectioned off into 5 zonas. I live in the 2nd zona. Every day I go down the hill to the main street to take a combi and everyday after school I subir (climb up) the hill. And when I say hill... I mean... BASTANTE hill. Yeah. It´s a killer. But I like having it because I have all this excess energy after sitting for 9 hours a day in clases and it´s definitely a good way to get exercise without having to be that "weird gringo" who runs. psshh.. ¿who does that?

side nota: I LOVE having ñ keys and ¿s on the keyboard!!!!

Sooooooo.. my dia es asi:
I wake up about 6:30 or so to dogs fighting/chickens crowing/my alarm (which I still hit about a zillion times before I get up Raquel hehe). By that time my whole family is already up. I dont know how they do it because they go to bed after me.. and then wake up a good 30 minutes before me... including my 18 year old brother! sheesh. Anywho. I have learned to NOT take a shower in the morning anymore... demasiado frio (too cold) so I just get ready and then have breaky with usually my sister and padre. So far it´s always been two medium sized fresh bread rolls with something in it... like... this morning some type of meat (my bro told me it was chicken. I highly doubt that.), or jam and butter... or one time is was guacomole/slices of avocado. They always give me two drinks in the morning. One is hot and is some type of Quaker or soya or... usually vanilla tasting thing. The other is a cold fruit juice. Then I go to school! With the lunch box and everything... awwww.. lately I´ve been brining my pianica. More on that later.

So classes start at 8 in the morning, lunch at 12, and resume at 1 until 5 in a nutshell. Half the day is dedicated to language. My profesor is Dario. He is awesome and there are only 5 people in my clase. Sometimes our classes are conducted in our host familia´s houses. After lunch we normally break into our program groups (mine is Youth Development), or have a charla (little class) on health or safety or food.... algo asi. After classes I have been staying after to play music with Dario. He plays guitar and is teaching me some awesome peruvian songs to play. He LOVES the pianica!! Theres this one song I learned today called Caballo Viejo. Its a haunting tune you can dance to. All the volunteers seem to like the pianica too. Everyone knows I have it and no one knew what it was before. (Yukiko. The pianica is a HIT). I had my host familia play it and I have some video footage of that to share. They love when I play. When I get to my site in August I think kids will love it too.

I get back home about 6 45 or so (if I play musica) and have dinner at about 7. By the way. Peruvians DO eat a bunch of rice and potatoes. Those two things are the staple of my diet and boy do they serve a lot. I do like the food so far (exception: chunky sweet soupish dish) but I´m not going to lie... it might become old. We shall see. :) I´ve helped make a number of meals (mostly soups). Tonight I helped my padre peel pea pods for an hour. Normally I chat with the padres about what not and my sister gets back about 8 30, my bro about 9 (they go to school/work/hang out with friends) and then we play cards (Bri.. I taught reyes en el rincon to my host bro and vete a pescar!) and watch TV and chat. I feel very comfortable with them. My bro and I are pretty good friends, I feel like they all have the same sense of humor as me and understand me pretty well. I usually go to sleep about 11 ish after spending that time with them.

After all that.. in short. I have a great support system with the peace corps and all my fellow volunteers, I love speaking spanish with the familia, I get to tocar the piano often and its nice to have structure right now. Ya!

With that said I have a funny story about me going to an Evangelical church with my padre and hermana if anyone is interested. Email me :) Thank you for reading and I hope to hear from you all! Keep leaving comments. They make me even more happy. Hasta!



  1. Emily! So Awesome and I am glad you are having fun and enjoying all the small things :) Thanks for posting!

  2. ¿ ñ are on every keyboard just need to know the right codes!

  3. Vete a pescar kind of sounds like an expletive or a swear, but i finally got it. "go .. yourself... to fish??" Port...land? Ladyfriend, I'm so glad that game made the jump down the southern hemisphere, as it began for the Hugheses in Ireland on a train from a nun in 1975. You're wonderful. Keep making music.

  4. Hi Em, sounds like you are having an awesome time. You are the perfect kind of person for this type of adventure - you are so open to it all and joyous about it in every way. I love following along and I love how you go back and forth between languages! By the way, this is god mother Sherry.

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  6. Hello, I want to serve in the peace corps in peru, m family is from Chincha so I want to go there or somewhere with many afro-peruvians. Do you think it would be possible through the peace corps? my email address is rhomtyr