The holiday season was great and full of friendly faces. I had a wonderful time relaxing in Costa Rica with my parents and grandparents. I felt so spoiled to eat so much wonderful food and have my parents all to myself. It was also great not to feel like such a weirdo all the time. Then Jason came for Christmas, and we had a blast exploring the jungle and sleeping on the each. Ultimately, Abigail cammeee!!!!! As always we made some of the most tranquilo situation the most exciting. Fortunately we got to practice a lot of dancing and cooking. I think it was great that she was the first person to visit my actual community to see how others would react.
In the past three months, I have really become accustomed to living in my community here in Ecuador. I no longer feel so strange or weird, I feel like this is my life and I’m extremely lucky. I live in a beautiful place and have the best job I could ever ask for. People have stopped being so distrustful of me. Needless to say, it has only taken eight months.
As for projects, I feel ask if I have a lot on the go. In October I started working at an agricultural technical high school. I help with English classes, in agricultural practicums, and on Saturday’s I supervise around 120 students in environmental education. Working with the students has been an extremely educational experience for all of us. Most of all, I continue to learn not to sweat the small stuff and to always intend on keeping my calm nature. Also, I have begun a garden and some compost. I am working on the applications for various projects with three different community organizations. Hopefully this week, I will start my relationship with the women’s group in my community. Overall, I feel there is not enough to time to rest; there is always something more to do.
This week, I had an interesting experience with culture shock. A group of about forty Americans came to provide medical services to a few nearby communities. After being notified by a neighboring volunteer, I decided to help translate for a while. To be honest, I do not miss the United States that much. Yes sometimes I miss being able to go to Walmart and find everything you need in one place at a cheap price, but hey whatever life is more relaxed here. Anyway upon sitting down to lunch, I started going crazy…everyone had blue eyes! So many blue eyes! I couldn’t stop staring. I never realized how weird it would be to see something so different again. However, this experience did give me a greater appreciation as to why sometimes people just can’t stop staring at me in a completely creepy way.
Much love to my parents, Jason, and Abby for all of their support this past month.