I´m now writing to you all from a 23 year old perspective. :) A feliz, volunteer in Peru 23 year old perspective. My cumpleaños was spent in Lima for the theater training with Peru 11 youth development volunteers... and I have to say, it was an amazing day! I even received 3 different cakes! That´s how delicious it was. I got to meet all the Peru 11ers (who are amazing) and even play ping pong and this awesome new game that I´m now addicted to called Mafia (which you play with cards... not firearms). I even had a short visit in Yanacoto where I visited the original amazing host familia and got to meet (and reconnect! :) with some newbies from Peru 14! yay! I´m not a newbie anymore! Needless to say, it was a great weekend and I´m so glad that´s how I got to spend my birthday. Plus, I received a package from the padres hand delivered again.. which was great because I got to meet another Peruvian familia who insists I must come to their house in Huaraz everytime I´m there. No problema!
This week has been fulfilling in Shilla. That is the perfect palabra for it. Fulfilling. Yup! The World Map project is underway (there are 21 students who want to help! Plus the librarian who also paints really well is on board). We will start painting Monday morning. I´m putting together lessons about the different countries and hopefully we´ll be cooking up some grub from around the mundo pretty soon.. and listening to all my world musica I´ve been collecting over these years. We´ll for sure be highlighting Croatia at some point. :) And Belgium. And Spain.
Also, today the English Profesor y yo planned all next week´s English lessons which I´m psyched about! I now have about 30 primary school kids go to my twice weekly Stadium Field Days and I´m not underway on the whole Community Diagnostic thing. Plus, my room now has a splendid and sturdy wall and I have the most comfortable bed! Yay! One of my host bros who lives in Lima (and doesn´t visit often) is in town for a few days... we joke that we´re twins because his birthday is October 1st and he will also be turning 23. I feel like my Spanish is falting when I talk to him because he is so outgoing, always has something to hablar about and talks about 1000 miles a minuto. Florcita, Rey (the bro) and I watched The Incredibles last night on the laptop which I thoroughly enjoy in Spanish. Today is my little sobrina´s (niece´s) birthday.. she is turning 3 and we will make rice pudding with the ingredients I buy here in Carhuaz on this little outing.
¿What más? ¿What más? Kids are starting to know my name around town which is exciting. People still ask me all the time about the volunteer who lived here before me (they LOVED him which I can totally understand.. he´s really chévere!) and sometimes I get a little tired of explaining that I will be here for the next two years, and no he is not coming back, and no, I don´t know if another volunteer will replace me, and yes, I know he was your best friend but now I´m here and let´s be amigos! But, it will all come in time. Part of the whole development work thing is how people come and go, and how strong bonds are formed and then have to be broken and made again with new people who have the same strong aspirations and ideas. It´s actually kind of interesting. What would happen if I just stayed? :) People joke in my town that I need to marry a Shillapino and buy some chacras and just call it a día. hehe.
Oh! This past Wednesday I went on a paseo with all the secundary students to a place called Honcapampa.. which is located in Huascaran National Park. It was BEAUTIFUL! Too bad I forgot my camera.. but we saw ancient ruins and went on a short trek up to some small, but bonita waterfalls. It was a great way to get to know all the professors and those teens. Plus I even rented a horse for a half an hour... by the way.. I´m seriously considering buying a horse. Like.. my familia thinks it´s a great idea and there´s lots of places I could go riding here. hmm.... soooo tempted. I would be known around here as that gringa who has a horse, wears yankees and plays a weird instrument called a pianica. Huh. Hopefully they´d remember that I worked in the colegio a bit too.. but I wouldn´t be so offended if they remembered me for the horse thing. :)
Books Read Count: 4
Growing Fondness for the music called Huayno on a scale of 10: 8
Number of Cuyes eaten: 6
Visits to Huaraz: 4
Hope all is well in the States and beyond!