Monday, May 01, 2006
After a 3 month whirlwind of training in Santa Cruz and Santa Lucia ending with us swearing in at the US embassy in Teguc, I have arrived permanently to my new home in La Esperanza. I moved in last Friday, and have been settling in, meeting people, figuring out what I am going to be doing for the next 2 years. The first week has been a somewhat atypical experience, since the group I´m working for, World Vision, had it´s yearly regional conference in Tela, which happens to be located about 5 hours away on the beach. It was a good introduction to the people I´m going to be working with, though not much work was accomplished and following a schedule is a foreign concept. I met too many people and know I won´t be able to keep anyone straight for a good while. Fortuneately the volunteer I´m replacing is still here for another week and has been great at showing me around even making up a cheat sheet of people´s names for me. And then yesterday, I went up to one of the villages for a Lenca cultural day, involving some skits, speeches, and traditional food and dancing. Getting out to the community was an adventure with a one hour drive on a little dirt road in a car that had seen better days, and then a one hour hike through the mountains. Fortuneately it didn´t rain leaving the mud roads unpassable.
La Esperanza seems like it will be a great place to live, with fruit and vegetable markets abounding and pretty much all the basic necessities and trivilities are available in town. It´s nice to be settled down with a home base. This week I´m going to be getting introduced to some of the villages with water projects in various stages. I´m also going to start teaching a physics class which should be interesting considering I´m still struggling with the Spanish. I´m looking forward to 2 great and challenging years and hope that I can do a decent job and have some success with the water projects.