Sunday, September 04, 2005

Hey everyone, been awhile but I’ll try and fill you in on the goings on down here. It has been a busy couple of weeks up in Cruz Alta. The eighth grade class I’ve been working with finally got the books we needed and classes have resumed. I’m working with a program called Educatodos that gives rural people the chance to continue their education beyond sixth grade (graduation day for people in the campo). The nice thing about the program is that it requires motivation; if you want to participate you have to buy your own books (something that is far from easy when you’re having a hard time making ends meet). The kids ordered the books a couple of weeks ago and they were three weeks late getting to Cruz Alta which meant two weeks without classes. But they’re here and things are getting back to normal. I’m getting to know the community and my neighbors poco a poco (little by little), siempre poco a poco. I’ve attended a few town meetings and met some interesting folks that I look forward to working with. Supposedly this is one of the easier times of service, the first month when everything is fresh and new, the next two are the hard ones where the loneliness and isolation set in. We’ll see, this is what they say but it must be different for everyone. There are times when I feel pretty isolated even though there are rugrats and neighbors over at my house most of the time I’m there, although the communication levels and worldviews don’t exactly line up. But it is pretty easy to remain positive and without regret. I’ve got the best view in the world from my hammock and with a little bluegrass coming from my cd player (battery powered of course) and a good cup of coffee life couldn’t be sweeter. Also Kari is coming to visit in November and my parents in March, I’ve got huge things to look forward too. Anyone else who’s interested in coming down should look into flights to San Pedro Sula Honduras or Sal Salvador, El Salvador (it is a bit further than SPS but often cheaper). I guess airfares are pretty huge right now so I don’t expect many visitors yet but I’ll keep a candle on and an extra fork clean just in case.
I’m trying to figure out whether or not I’ve got a green thumb, so far it’s still pretty pink like the rest of my fingers. I’ve been going crazy with a machete and a hoe around my place and planting any seeds that I could get my hands on. My neighbors chickens wiped out a couple of my plots in about an hour the other day, they scratched up my rows, ate all the seeds I’d planted and tore apart the barriers that I’d made for soil conservation. Two chickens undid what took me a day to finish in a little over an hour. I covered my garden with spiky bushes to keep the chickens out and so far it has worked but I’ve put a better edge on the machete in case the three-toed devils try it again and soup needs to be made. Well, I’ve got to hit up the grocery stores right now and head up pretty quick, hope this post finds everyone in good health and spirits. Joe


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