Yes, that´s right there is alot of Jesus in my life (that one goes out to little Anna); my host family isnt´t even mildy religious, but they are in the .001% minority. People love their Jesus here, and I like theirs too. Their Jesus makes them ring the church bells at pretty much any appropriate or inappropriate time of the day, including at 5AM in the morning. On Sunday mornings the bells are accompanied by singing, not live, but on CD that conveniently skips over and over and over again... The Jesus party doesn´t stop there though folks, it goes on with fireworks every hummm 10 mns.... so why do I like Jesus so much then?? I guess its sort of a comic relief and starts my day off with a bang, literally... We also had a Jesus block party in the main square which resulted in some really exciting peopl watching action
In unrelated news, I started off ¨work¨ at my health puesto on Friday and it was quite the two and a half hours, much of it was spent talking to posters.... We haven´t met the head nurse yet and it seems as if the technician and the nurse aid don´t really get what we´re doing there (for those of you still confused it´s health education and workign with health promoter folks)... my theory was proven when the aide asked us (myself and my partner in crime Katy) if we had ever taken out stitches before, which I responded to NO! Thankfully we were not put to work, but we did have to sit in on the removal of stitches from some sort of displaced hernia... Pretty awkward moment.... The health puesto itself isn´t too busy because many of the folks here prefer to go to the big centro in neighboring Antigua instead... In sum, first impression, the workers are not enthused by us and we have alot of ¨confianza¨trust building to go... we are supposed to meet with our promoters on wednesday although I´m not sure that they do exist in our pueblo.... Well, as I stated to others, so my puesto kinda sucks but at least guatemala isn´t getting ravaged by human hungry zombies right?? gotta look for the optimism here folks...
We also got to visit other volunteers in pueblos by Chimaltenango in the highlands.... the site that I visited was absolutely breathtaking, perched among mountainous peaks.... Unfortunately, this is the population that is the poorest in guatemala and the conditions are pretty bad.... the volunteer there is at the end of her service and we got to see some of the projects she was doing in a nearby community that consisted of fundraising and installing cement floors in households... sounds meek right? No really, Respiratory disease is the number one cause of death in Guatemala, because of the sanitary conditions of many rural households... many do not have improved stoves, which causes households with dirt floors to become inundated with smoke, tar and infectious living conditions.... The trip really put me in a downward mood seing those conditions and feeling overwhelmed thinking that I could never do all these amazing things that this volunteer has done.... But that´s what everyone has thought before and if there is one really great thing about peace corps, it is that there is a really great support network... shit we´re all uncomfortably trying to live with our new selves!
I´m also reading Guatemala: Never again; a book published in the 1990s documenting the psychological impact and details of the civil war and atrocities, massacres committed by both sides, but especially by the military at the time... The history of Guatemala never ceases to amaze me and its people who in such short amount of time have alsmost unfazingly learned to live and coexist with one another... For instance, one section of the book detailed the massacre of 12 companeros in a nearby school of a pueblo, and as I read further, I realized that the place was actually the same pueblo and maybe even the same school that I had been in just the day before while visiting the volunteer by Chimaltenango.... It left me stupified.
Well that´s all for now kids, my computer neighbors next door are playing really weird Irish Guatemalan music over and over again.... Guatemalan'IrishNerds perhaps? apparently they do exist.