Hello Friends. Happy Thanksgiving to all! Just providing a quick update:
Ive been at my site for almost a week now...here are some pics:
For obvious reasons it was one of the most sought after sites in my cohort. Not only is it beautiful, but it is a 15 minute drive (40 minute walk) from one of the biggest tourists towns in the country. This means access to almost all basic necessities. A lot of restaurants and a lot of bars. All together a huge party scene for tourists and expats alike.
I was placed there my Program Managers because they deemed that I was the most mature and professional individual in our training program. (There words not mine) They have full confidence that I will get the job done and wont be enticed by the touristy/ bar scene....
Well they were wrong. While I havent been out on the night life (well maybe they were right about this part I have very little interest in the party scene at this point in my life) I have spent almost every other day in said touristy down gouging myself in decently priced food. (I had an entire breakfast that would give the Dennys Grand slam a run for its money for only $3.75...)
I will say that the magic of the tourist town is starting to wear off and I am much more focused on getting to work in my community. (A task I wont be able to do until February) Until then I am trying to integrate.
My new host family is nice. The family dynamic is strange for a number of reasons. The biggest take away is that my host "mom"/"sister" is my age (I believe I am a month older than her) and she is a single mom. Her father was mayor not once but twice and lost the most recent election. (this bids well for me as I just tell every one I am living in his house which is on the outskirts of town)
The family along with my community is indigenous/ Mayan. They speak Castellano (Spanish) and Kaqchikel. It is my job to not only better my spanish, (I am currently Advanced High, I have to move to Superior before my service is over) but to learn Kaqchikel. I know a couple of words at best.
The cons currently for me is the wifi. I live in a concrete bunker so the signal is weak at best. I have killed more spiders in my first week here (and a couple of giant ants/ scorpions????) than in my entire time state side. There are a lot of callejones (one person narrow streets) that are extremely steep. Its a hike for my lard ass every day.
I also dont know how to cook so there is that.
My "Socio" (Work Partner) is pretty nice and really has a lot of work planned out for me. I technically work in 3 different sites and the department supervisor region wants me to work in two more rural towns. ( I havent even met the guy)
His son is a carpenter so I have a carpenter guy now. I also have my own personal motorized rickshaw driver. He picks me up 70% of the time. Cool dude. I am suppose to be getting a Wifi router in my room soon. I just got clean water in my room for drinking. I will be going into town again this sunday to buy a portable gas stove as I want to learn how to cook.
I guess that is all I have to say. I am slowly realizing just how long 2 years are... I miss home at times but I dont want to go home. When I feel that I need to be home to be happy that is when I will walk away (should it be before my service ends) at the moment I have no plans to extend my service. 2 years is all I can give.
Final thoughts: I find myself to be smitten over a woman who is 3000 miles away... we will see how that goes.