I was in Puerto Viejo over the weekend with Maria and Zoey. We had a great time, didn't do a whole lot besides hang out on the beach and in coffee shops (and bars) but there was an abundance of good conversation and overall enjoyment. That is always welcome.
I celebrated the 4th on a bus and arrived just in time to give my English class. The class is going pretty well and I think my students are even learning something. I taught them how to say "This sucks!" to carry them through the frustrating parts. I am suppose to start another one next month and I am not sure how I am going to work that since I have less and less time to spare.
I am busy now planning for camp activities that I am going to do in my barrio next week. I started making preparations more than a little too late so I am having to scale back quite a bit. It also doesn't help that Peace Corps as an organization is becoming more and more beauracratic and less and less willing to support volunteers. That is super frustrating, not because I am not used to being expected to do more with less but that I expected better from them. Of coarse we will take it. We will continue on because we believe in the work more than we are willing to protest a system that is conter-productive. That and we are one part humanitarian, two parts masochistic. "Ho-hum," say the social workers...
I will be also hosting a group of trainees on the 17th. The new group arrived at the end of last month. I still havn't met any of them but I expect to eventually. I am trying to find houses for them to stay in and it is proving more difficult than I had anticipated. I am sure it will work out somehow. It always seems to. Besides... I think it is kind of exciting to wait til the last minute and go through the panic of impending failure.
On the bright side... my camp activities have been integrated into being partially sponsored by the newly formed Sports Association. I pretty much had to bribe my former "host brother" to invite me to the meetings but he finally did. (He is a politician and, I believe, would rather keep any advances in his name.) They have had a total of 3 meetings and I have been to 2. At first I was leary and wondered how they would accept me, since it took so much for me to be invited in the first place and then I was the only girl in the middle of a bunch of "machisto" guys. They talked about how they wished more women would join and how they felt like when people think of sports, they only think soccer. I offered to incorporate them into my camp activities and they thought about it and talked about it and then their eyes got a spark. They quick organized to meet on Sunday to clean the park really well, marking a new era, a new beginning. They held their daughters in their laps, and gently stroked their hair, "We can start something" they said.