Thursday, September 23, 2010
Hello everyone! I am here in Peru. I live in a little village near Lima and with a host family. They don´t speak English... but ít´s forcing my Spanish to improve quickly, which it has. They´re great. I have a host mom, dad, 17 and 12 year old sisters, a one month only baby brother, 2 cats and a dog. My family´s had volunteers in the past so they know I´m not dumb... just learning Spanish and speaking like a pequeña. The homes remind me a lot of Scotland- small but you have everything you need. My room here is bigger than in StL or Mpls for that matter. I have my own bathroom minus a toilet (there´s one down the hall...) with HOT water. Kind of a big deal. Training is like school- I walk to school with my neighborhood friends carrying the lunch my mom made me (and I wear Mary Janes...haha) and have 4 hours of Spanish class. I´´m in the short bus class and we´re learning the basics. The profesora is great though and I´m picking it up well. Then we have other types of training in the afternoon about safety, public health strategies, Peruvian culture etc. God I missed school this summer. It´s awesome. Check these shapes out on the keyboards here: çñ¿ª. Awesome. Or, chevere. That´s awesome. The other PC kids are pretty cool, but I am on the older side, for sure. Lots of fresh undergrads. So where my Spanish lacks, hopefully my public health skills will pick up. I´m sorta hoping to get placed in a mountainous area where they speak Quechan anyway, so mediocre Spanish will suffice. But I do wanna learn it. There are lots of street dogs here. And chickens and roosters and shit. They talk ALL f-ing night. LOUDLY. But I´m usually so tired, it doesn´t matter much. I sleep well. The cats around here are tiny and look malnourished. But I think they´re ok, I´m just used to fat American corn-fed beasts. The cats have helped ween my offa Star... I was woken up to a small earthquake in the middle of the night the other day. It was pretty fun. I have eaten chicken and rice for lunch and dinner for about 5 days now. That´s right. Chicken. Right off the bone and all. Like a true omnivore. I like it. Good thing, too. The coffee was something to get used to... hot water and NesCafe mix. But hey, I drink coffee. If I had to inject it, I would. With clean needles, of course. I miss people, but can´t say I miss home yet. It´s freaking awesome here and I´m having a hell of a time. Although we´re in the dry season so the mountains are all dusty ánd it´s really arid. Not much verde around here. But there are so many types of landscapes in Peru, I will see much, much more. Miss you all and love you much! And remember, if you reply to this, all will see. Email if you don´t want the world to see: juliet.massie at gmail.com. Can´t access the at symbol... and haven´t figured out how to upload photos yet.... will come. Peace.