Becca making tortillas on the stove.
My bed with all my pics and also my map of Idaho to the left!!!
I am all moved into my house now. The walls are painted and semi-decorated, my bed has sheets and my clothes are on some shelves. I consider all of that a huge success! The last week has been one of the hardest and most stressful weeks I can remember. It is never fun moving but trying to furnish a home with a Peace Corps salary is a challenge. Luckily my amazing host family had an extra bed they don’t use so they are letting me use it. That saved me mucho dinero! On Thursday Becca, Cathaleen and I went to Soloma, a larger nearby town, to buy some other things we can’t get in Santa Eulalia, our muni. I decided the wood burning stove is not going to work for me so I bought a cheap little two burner propane stove. Unfortunately today I found out they forgot to give me the “fitting” part which connects the hose to the stove so tomorrow I am going to try to find the part in Santa but I may have to go all the way back to Soloma. Grrrr…not the way I want to spend my Saturday.
About my living situation here…I technically have a host family but I am not in the same house as them. I live about 100 yards away in one room of another house. The family used to use this room as just a kitchen but they have since left for the US so it has been unoccupied for a long time. My host family consists of about a thousand people…not really that many but a LOT. Marta Lidia is the woman who is more or less my go to “mom.” As far as I know she is a single mother and has a 6 year old son named Fermín. Fermín absolutely loves me which is a blessing and a curse. He always wants to play and hang out with me which I like but it has been hard to have a little privacy. Also in the family are the grandparents. Magdalena is the grandmother and she only speaks Kanjobal. The grandfather is a deaf, crazy evangelical who always repeats himself. He asks me every time how many states are in the US then proceeds to tell me how many states are in each different Latin American country. He also tells me every day I need to accept Jesus Christ in my life and I just keep telling him I am Catholic. I have a feeling this conversation will never end. Also within the same family but in a different house there are two other families but they are all related and I have no clue how. There are about 10 different kids all under 10 running around here. I am not sure on all the names yet and I can only hope in two years I will be able to figure out which kids belong to which women.
Also, nothing has been done about building a latrine me for. I am going to really have to get the ball rolling on this one. Luckily I am highly motivated to have a latrine so I will make sure it gets done in the next month…until then, Milpa here I come!
As far as work goes I have my job cut out for me. I have no Health Center or Health Post in Pet so I don’t have anywhere to base my work out of. I am really going to have to be proactive to try and find some groups that want to hear health charlas. The town really wants me to work with the schools so I am excited to start there. Becca, Cathaleen and I did do one Dengue charla yesterday to 275 students at an elementary school in the next aldea over. It went well for our first charla here. It was nice to get something under my belt but I really need to focus on my own community and getting started here.
O and one final thought…do not give your number to anyone who seems even slightly interested in you. I received 4 calls from the ambulance driver today and it was awkward and I need to steer clear of him! Why do all Guatemalan men think every American woman will sleep with them…NOT TRUE!