Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Field Based Training in Ancash

Sorry for the blog neglect last week. I was without internet, as I was in the beautiful department of Ancash. Here you have all that you were missing last week :)

Day by day recap-

Sunday: Arrive in Huaraz (Capital City) at 6:30am. Breakfast of delicious crepes at this adorable cafe own by a lovely couple from California. 

Lose bank card. Spend the rest of the day cursing at myself for forgetting my new pin number and feeding my card to the ATM. 

Monday: Teach English: success. My group of 3 for this project used a game from my high school Spanish class where the students swat words on the marker board with a fly swatter to practice new vocab words. The teacher liked this activity so much that she asked for our fly swatters so that they could repeat this game. Win! Learned a lot with this lesson and felt a lot more comfortable managing a classroom. 

English Lesson. I bribe with candy. 

Eat Guinea Pig: Sort of a success. I did it. Even with the little paw attached, caught outstretched in it's final plea for salvation. I watched these little guys get 'plucked,' gutted, and prepared. Tastes like chicken. Will not be a repeat 'treat.' 

Cuy, aka guinea pig

Meet the world's fastest kid: Done. His name was Alexis. I stumbled upon him in an afternoon of games for neighborhood kids in Jangas. Every time I had the pleasure of being chosen to tag, chase, or capture another human I chose him. Eventually I wore him down and caught him, it took some work though. Later he told me he runs with his dad in the mornings when he's not helping his mom in the kitchen and he has a 2 week old little sister. My favorite friend of the day. I like kids who facilitate my multi-tasking of running and working at the same time. I need to squeeze in a good run whenever I can here. 

Tuesday: Teach children how to brush their teeth for the first time ever: Done. Will write a full entry on this later. One of the coolest things I've done here so far. 

Swim in a thermal bath: Check. The water looked weird, but felt great. As described by Matt, it was like falling into the pool in Willy Wonka's chocolate factory...

Thermal Baths

Wednesday: Trust falls and a quick volleyball tourney with local youth: Yes. The boys of that school even taught me how to head but a soccer ball. Big win! 

Thursday: Reproductive health/ pregnancy prevention session with teenagers: success. Afternoon session with parents of a different town about self esteem, sex, HIV/ AIDS, teen pregnancy, etc: big win. I got a chance to dig out my acting skills from days past for these sessions. It was great to see both the kids and the parents so engaged in these sessions. We also made cookies for lunch to practice altitude cooking. Good day. 

My team for the week.

Friday: Glacial lake visit: huge win. The rest of the day: huge fail. Friday and Saturday I was out with a bacterial infection. My itinerary was as follows: sleep, bathroom, gatorade, bathroom, sleep, repeat. Thank God for antibiotics. I went to the glacial lakes in the morning, which was an amazing experience. Crystal blue water, gorgeous mountain viewing, pure group bonding time ;) I was glad I went, but ended up spending a large chunk of our time there in the combi resting. After a windy and nauseous 2 hour descent from the lakes to our next site, I headed back to the hostel where I spent the remainder of the day. 

Shot from the glacial lakes. Photo credit: Katy Halasz

Saturday: Breakfast: fail. Half a bagel proved too difficult to eat. Went to the bank for a new card, retired to the hostel for the rest of the day. When evening came I treated myself to some Ramen, which was amazing by the way, then boarded the bus back to Lima after bidding farewell to the beautiful mountains of Ancash. 

Great times were had, good things were learned, and I hope to return with anyone who wants to visit me! 

New Friends! 

Just another day at the office :)

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