Tuesday, September 23, 2008

PCV visit and more


Well this past weekend I was finally able to go on my volunteer visit!! It wasn’t to Puerta Plata but it was nice either way to get away from Las Tablas for a bit. I went with another PCT, Kenzie. We began our trip on Sat morning around 8:30 and walked to the main road with our overnight bags, complete with our mosquito nets. It didn’t seem like it was going to be that long of a walk but in the heat it felt longer than the 3 miles it was. We got to the “bus stop” (aka, we stood on the side of the road in the shade) and waited for a bus for about 20 minutes. After about 45 wonderful minutes in the AC we were let off at our stop. The directions said for us to walk to a green colmado and wait for a guagua. Well we saw all these motorcycles circling and thought that would be faster since the bus was just going to drop us off at the front of the PCV’s neighborhood and then we would have to walk around and find her house. Kenz and I were proud of ourselves because we shooed off the creepy motorcycle guys and were able to find some normal looking ones that didn’t call us their loves. We were double proud because we got the price down from 120 pesos for both to 80 pesos and they understood us!! I found that I think its better to just go to town and say what I think is right rather than pausing a lot and being correct when I talk. I’m surprised people understood me but I guess it works ok.

We got to the town and drove around and around since we couldn’t find the “bakery” which was an unmarked house that made bread inside… I don’t know how we would have found it. We asked the people in the town where the gringa or Americana lived and they told us. We got great door to door service when the motorcycle dudes dropped us off right in her front yard.

The visit was a good example of how different PCVs service can be. Our volunteer was really nice and we didn’t do too much but visit with people in the town and ask her a million questions. I learned how to make spaghetti with “white sauce” (very plain but good) and also hot cocoa with food stuff from the colmado. Although I tried it out myself the next day in Spanish class and found that I am no Dona, my hot chocolate was chunky with powered milk. Even the Dona didn’t want to drink it (she did though:)

Anyways, on Sunday it was time to leave so we walked together to the “bus stop” again. This time there was a house like structure for us to hang out in. There were two women in it as well as a man. The man was laying down and to our surprise was very openly pleasuring himself. It was a little awkward for us as we stood there about 5 feet from the man who was obviously enjoying himself very much. Eventually a van came up the road and we were able to catch a ride to the main road. From there we took another van to the nearest town and then hung out a while before we took a nice bus home again.

When we got back to that 3 mile stretch between where the bus dropped us off and our houses I was allll about haggling the motorcycles to give us a cheap ride but Kenzie seemed content to walk and save the money, even though I got one guy to offer to give us a ride for just 10 pesos each!! It didn’t seem so bad at first but soon the clouds parted and it was HOT. When we finally got to our house, mine was the closest on the walk, my Dona was freaking out that we walked in the heat. I really wanted to talk a shower but she absolutely would not let me. She made me sit down and drink some “juice” (like 30% juice and 50% sugar- they LOVE their sugar here, its even too much for me) before she would let me take a shower I was literally dripping sweat for about 25 minutes until I had unpacked and was able to shower. When I was putting my net back up I heard my Dona talking to another PCT who was passing. She made him sit down and take some juice too and she made us both eat. I told her I could go for something cold but really wasn’t hungry. I thought I said it right but she made me a big plate of hot rice and a fried hot dog. Oh gosh. Poor Darryl got what I didn’t eat since he showed up later but he got an extra hot dog! Hahaha!! I love my Dona though:) This was the first time she was really pushy and it was just because she was worried.

Well, I forgot to plug in my lap top last night to charge it and the power is out again so that’s it for now. I’m getting a different cell phone today so give my mom a call or text if you want it. Hope to hear from you all soon. Tomorrow is the day we get our mail I think so I’m looking forward to that! Miss you all!!




Today was the day that we had to give our presentations in front of everyone. The presentations were pretty much over whatever we wanted but in essence they needed to be based off of something from our house visits. I decided to do mine over the Dos and Don’ts of interviewing. It went ok, it was all in Spanish and had to be at least 10 minutes. Not bad though. I’m not looking forward to two weeks from now when I will have to do a presentation in front of a women’s group. Hopefully my Spanish somehow gets a LOT better by then so I can understand questions a little better. I noticed it is getting better but it’s no where near where I want it to be. It’s really tiring trying to talk in Spanish all the time. I like it but it wears me out! It doesn’t help either that I have to go to bed by like 9:30 every night so I can function in the morning. It’s because even after a week here I still can’t sleep through the night. I wake up at least 4 times/night. Although, I have to say that after my sheets were washed the ant problem disappeared.

As far as insect issues go, I have been having a terrible time since I got to the campo! I had hardly any mosquito bites by the time I left Santo Domingo and now my freaking legs look like they have the chicken pox!!! Today one of the Dona’s gave me Vicks to put on them. I don’t know if it helps but I did it. I guess that Dona uses Vicks for everything though. There’s a big problem with pink eye here in the campo and that Dona put Vicks in her eye after she got it. Ouch. She still has it too.

Today we all went for a long walk to the river. Some of the girls knew about a shortcut down to the river in the back of one of their houses but we took the long way there instead planning on using that way to get back. Well we walked to the river and through the river and I even sat in the river and then had some problems with our last step- finding the trail back. Some people popped out along the way so we figured that must be the way but I guess it wasn’t. We ended up roughing it on the way back, hiking up some steep terrain littered with some type of poop in our flip flops. I got home and promptly took a shower.

Tomorrow we leave for our volunteer visits, finally! I’m bummed because I don’t get to go to Puerta Plata but I’m glad I get to go somewhere. I don’t have to go alone now either; Kenzie and I are paired up to go to a site that’s only about 30 km from here. So that’s pretty sweet, and I don’t think we have to take a motorchoncho- even better!

Well, I think that’s it for now. Hope you all are doing well and I hope to hear from you soon!




batteredbugs said...

Well, well Lil' Bets,
This was a welcome relief to finally see another post to Ur blog when I got here today as there wasn't anything new there since 9/18, and I was beginning to get a little worried about U... 6 days and no new posts??? But it sounds like U've been pretty busy lately, and with the erratic power out there I suppose it all makes sense. Ur post on the 19th and last nights both appeared together today as like one long post. Now I'm a little confused with all of this suite case carrying etc., but have U moved to another house now with a new "Dona"? Or are U back at the same one that U've been at??? Also wondering what happened to that nice flashlight I'd sent U, and/or whether U've received Aaron's package with the headlight yet. Let us know.

Anonymous said...

Here's your weather forcast for Bani :) This starts Wednesday evening the 24th.

Detailed Local Forecast

* Tonight: Showers and thundershowers likely. Low 76F. Winds WSW at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 60%.

* Tomorrow: Variable clouds with scattered showers in the morning, then thunderstorms in the afternoon. High 87F. Winds SW at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 60%.

* Tomorrow night: Variable clouds with thunderstorms, especially during the evening. Low 77F. Winds WSW at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 60%.

* Friday: Scattered showers in the morning, then variable clouds during the afternoon with scattered thunderstorms. High 87F. Winds SSW at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 60%.

* Saturday: Scattered thunderstorms. Highs in the upper 80s and lows in the upper 70s.

* Sunday: Scattered thunderstorms. Highs in the mid 80s and lows in the upper 70s.

Looks like you got the pancho just in time...for MORE rain LOL!