I have a home, at least for the next three months. I am staying with a family in Ipis de Guadalupe. It is about 25 minutes by bus from San Jose. So far so good, I have found an internet cafe a couple blocks from my house so I should be able to keep in touch. I think I may be able to upload pictures soon too. It may take some kissing up with the guys that work in the cafe, but I think my Spanish is up to it.
I met my family on Sunday. Lots of smiling and nodding, but I think it is going to work out well. My family consists of my mom, Doña Olga, her granddaughter, Stephanie (7) and her neice, Estelle (20). I also met her sister and friends and lots of kids when I first got here. I realized immediately that I have severely, and somewhat shamefully, overpacked. My room is pretty small, between my suitcases and the bed there is really very little room for walking. I've actually only unpacked about half of my clothes. I think I did some emotional packing. Oh well. I won't get rid of anything until I get my site just to be sure, but I think I will still be donating quite a bit to the local second hand stores, which are appropriately called "Ropa Americana" or "American clothes" cuz they generally come from the states.
My language class is going well. We are working on giving and receiving directions and finding our way around. This is very appropriate because although, in some cases, the streets do have names, no one knows what they are. So, if you wanted to know where the post office is, you would be told "walk three blocks South from the church, then seven blocks east, next to the pharmacy and across from the supermarket." I'm not kidding... the address for the Peace Corps office is; Sabana norte, from the Banco Inerfin, 200 meters west, 100 meters south, Corner house, diagnoally from the Spanish Ambassador´s residence, in front of the park. It's a relative of efficiency.
Our group has been divided. There are two different programs; Children, Youth and Families (CYF) and Micro-Enterprise Development, so we are divided by program. We have been further divided by language ability. The youth program has three groups and the micro group four. I am in the intermediate group with four other people. Each group is placed in a community, mine is Ipis. There aren't any groups in San Jose but we are all within a bus ride because we all meet together on Fridays. Overall, I have been impressed and satisfied with the training I'm getting. I guess after 40+ years you would expect Peace Corps to have learned a few things. I like the people in my group also although I have quite a few friends in the micro group that I would like to see more. It's good prep though as in October we will be dispersed solo like leaves in the wind. We still have no idea, nor any clues about where we will go or what we will do. During training we are also being evaluated as to which positions will be best filled by whom.
Last night I watched "El Guerra de los Mundos" or "War of the Worlds." I am assuming it was a pirated copy as it is still in theatres. The TV was a little rough so anything that took place at night was real tough to see. So for the most part, I heard it more than watched it.
I believe that is about all of the excitement... Tomorrow, I take the bus into San Jose so that should prove to be exciting. We are going to go to the PC office and then check out the Medical University where we will attend training on Fridays.
For now... much smiling and nodding. Pura Vida.... Oh! I almost forgot.... I learned how to say "Dude" in Spanish... the transition is nearly complete.