More new volunteers arrived this week and last week, diversifying our ever-changing little familia. The director of HCA came this Monday, and all our classes ended as we trained and prepared for the vacation program (VAP) all week. It's like throwing on a summer camp-we're the counselors and together, after the kids are released for their winter break, we play. This week was registration so we made posters and set up tables at each of our locations. My team set out candy and stickers to lure children into signing up. It's a free program, and although we're not focused on teaching English during VAP, kids come to learn songs, do crafts, play games, and receive love and mentorship from people who care. Our group is the Wolves, we're gonna have a howling chant and face our faces every morning. Having been practically raised in summer camps, being in girl scouts and counseling for outdoor school camps, I can't wait to have fun with these kids!!
The bomberos (firefighters) class continues on. I love those guys, even though we almost never start class on time. They'll be taking their first exam next week-they looked so scared when I announced it!
This morning I went to help out at a local soup kitchen-I had no idea it would exist here. Rosa, the kindergarten teacher, runs it and invited us to come. I didn't know if I should bring a camera or not, so I didn't. It's at this building made of tin shedding and wooden planks, with a dirt floor and almost no furniture except for steel folding chairs and a few tables. Turns out it's used as a church! Only little children were there to be served food-some of the kids attend the kindergarten we volunteer at and others I've never met before. The ones I knew ran up to hug me, big smiles n all. Children are always just so happy to have people to play with and tasty food-just like me!
I've impressed myself with how quickly I adjusted back to the flow of life here after taking a short break, worlds away. It's entered a nervous excitement in me for the future, which is only a month away now. One more month, no more biking around flooded dirt roads, no more baleadas, no more espanol. One more month, and I'll be with the boyfriend, finding my place in the job market, starting life from scratch again in a new big city. I need to find a church there, wherever it'll be. "Worry fades away when we know for sure our future is secure in God's hands."
At our little friend's 4th grade graduation at her bilingual school
Making signs for VAP registration!