Hola amigos! This week has been filled with mostly travel. Two planes, a fifteen hour bus ride, and tomorrow we finally head to San Francisco! Joel, our project coordinator, picked me up on Monday night from the airport in Lima, where we stayed until the following day. Our bus wasn’t until 6 so we had a chance to explore Lima. We spent most of our time finding and playing various musical instruments.
We arrived in Piura at 9am on Wednesday morning and immediately went to my hostel. I was very pleased; it had a great view and was only $5 a night! In the afternoon, Joel showed me around Piura a little while before we headed to his house where he lives with the other project coordinator, Rolando (who is also his brother). It felt amazing to sit around the dinner table with their family, talking, laughing, and improving upon my Spanish skills. No wonder everyone always says immersion is the way to go, I feel I have improved greatly and it’s only been four days!
Joel and I in Catacaos
Rolando showed me some videos and we talked for a while about our expectations for the upcoming project. It is obvious to me that Rolando is very committed to the well-being of the citizens in San Francisco. We talked about how the youth need to know why trash disposal is so important. He feels (and I agree) that last year’s volunteers did a great job laying the basis for this project. We agreed that Jaime and I will spend this first month getting to know the youth, the families, and the community. Next month, we will return to Piura and bring a specific list of goals and tasks for the following month. I am glad we are working with both Joel and Rolando on this project. Rolando seems to be more knowledgeable about the community and our project goals and Joel has been most helpful with accommodating travel, completing tasks, and contacting the people I need to talk to. We will update again in about a month!