La Chureca, Nicaragua

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

The Hardest thing... My Favorite Part

My friend Kate sent me an email asking me to fill in the following blanks:

The hardest thing about being in Nicaragua has been _____________________.

My favorite part about being in Nicaragua is _____________________________.

I loved thinking about what she asked me and sent her back the following responses that immediately came to mind. I decided to post on my blog the responses (since i've been lame in updating)

The hardest thing about being in Nicaragua (believe it or not) is
living with 14 other strangers that you have to live and work with
everyday who are not like you at all. At first it was way way cool.
Super fun... Super easy. But really I think at this point in the trip
I am finding most of my struggles internally being people that I live
with (specifically the other volunteers)...I don't think that they
would ever assume that, but I have to take it to God everyday,
otherwise I'd have a breakdown... The main leader of Manna Project for
the region calls living and working with Manna Project : "the Real
World (show) meets Peace Corps"... and I would say that pretty much
sums up a lot of the dynamics here.
I mean I think i'm making my time here sound bad... but really its
not (its awesome living here!)... its just that you have to really work on relationships and
communication ... and you know me... I'm an RA... I don't share rooms
with other people... and I'm in authority over other people that I
live with... The only other time I've lived in a house with a bunch of
peeps was last summer when I lived with Ohana (my best girlfriends)...
So anyway... its been a major learning process for me to live with
others and love them.. (i'm learning that I am actually a really
selfish and short tempered person)..

My FAVORITE PART about being in Nicaragua is... oh my goodness that is
too hard to answer... It is absolutely amazing being here. The people here are so loving... I stinkin love giving kids hugs and looking into their smiling faces with so much joy! I love
teaching women's aerobics and exercise class... Its so fun to lead
workouts with a headset microphone. i love teaching! I love the
Kids... oh my goodness ... I saw the cutest kid I have ever seen
in my life last wednesday in the La Chureca Clinic. His name is Jose
Antonio ... 2 years old and would have suddened squeal bursts and
laugh for the hour straight that I played with him during the Mother's
health talk... he would scream and squeal ( in delight) and then run
into my arms to give me hugs... I would in a second take him home with
me if I could... so obvi.. the kids which are so stinkin cute are on
my Fav list... Probably close to #1 on it....
its cool that people are so friendly and at the same
time living with 14 people (however hard it may be) is also a lot of
fun... We have been having some intense Speed Scrabble games... We play Speed Scrabble Survival style with elimination of the weakest player of every round.. and we've really gotten into Rummy 500 as well.

Oooh...I just remembered that I think that one of the hardest things
nica wise--- is coming upon people in poverty who ask/beg/ for money
and are mean to you about it. I want to help out and give them
everything i have.. but they are mean and degrading to your person and
expect stuff from you because you are american.. it's been hard for me
to reconcile not giving money to the poor when I have with their
requests which are loaded with Loathing... (and we've been told not to
give people money too)

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Happy Birthday SAL!

I am so happy to say that I got the privilege of talking to Salvi on the phone today (or actually yesterday... the 30th of June... One of the most important days of the year--duh!) ! My little big brother is now a big 16 year old and it sounded as if he was having a good day!
On another note... I haven't posted in way too long.  
Last week was pretty crazy.  We were getting into the swing of things programs and teaching wise, so i spent the least amount of time ever on my computer to reflect and update.

Last week we had more responsibility to actually lesson plan and take a bigger role in the programs and classes we chose to be apart of--
I loved it! I think English classes are my favorite academic classes to be apart of. 

The students are awesome.  In my Monday and Wednesday adult beginner's english class there are about 15-30 students that come.  They very from age 12 to age 52 (totally guessing), but they are all eager to learn.

Today we taught prepositions and had different writing and speaking activities.... Next class we will have a little "pruebita" (quiz) and play some simon says :)
In my Chureca Beginner's English class we practiced reading comprehension of the English vocabulary that the students learned last week.  They have market, education, fighting, and gifting vocabulary that the students (who are also adults from the range of 17-27--guessing again) use to write sentences and practice conversation.  Geoff, The main program director in charge of one of the English classes I'm helping teach, says he tries to incorporate reading, conversation, writing, and listening skills as much as possible in teaching English.  So our lesson plans have been surrounded by trying to incorporate different disciplines that we want the students to use.
So the two English classes I'm helping teach are just about the best and most challenging thing I
feel I'm working on down here right now.