I am very fortunate and have two wonderful sitemates, Sam and Alison. As soon as I got into site on Saturday afternoon, Sam and Alison met me at the bus and helped me carry my stuff to my new house. Afterwards, we enjoyed a lovely dinner of chicken, rice, and mango salsa as we chatted with some neighborhood kids that very nearly missed their 9pm curfew.
The next day began the real adventure: hiking to the top of Peñas Blancas, a nearby mountain range with a coffee farm at its base. This was one of the most intensive hikes I have ever done–I had to use trees to pull myself up steep inclines, and oftentimes, was on my hands and knees crawling up. I am really surprised I made it out without injury, especially on the way back down where I fell on my butt more than a few times.
Alison and Sam in the truck, en route to the base:
The gang, almost half way up.
View from the top!:
And now, some pictures from my site. This is the view I get when I walk to Sam’s house. He lives down the hill.
This is my house. My room is that front window:
And here is the center of town. It’s super bustling complete with a market, tons of Eskimo ice cream carts, street food, and lots of stores.
Here is the front of the Casa Materna, where I work. This week I made bracelets with the ladies and I’m giving my first charla on Thursday about self-esteem.
And here is the view of the hospital, the other place I work. It’s brand new–it just opened in December, so they’re still working out some kinks. When I went in on Monday morning, there were about 100 people waiting to see doctors, and I believe there are only about 9 on staff. I think I’ll be seeing a lot of build-up and improvements with this hospital over the next couple years and I’m excited to be a part of it. Tomorrow I’m heading out with some doctors and health educators to help out with a health fair in a rural community.
That’s about it for now. I’m really optimistic about all that my site has to offer. More updates later!