So there isn’t too much new to report. I’ve been here in site in Paracas for almost 2 weeks. Work has been slow to start, but I’m not trying to rush it. I’ve really just been trying to meet people and learn more about my community and the current projects that are in place that are related to some of the work that I will be doing. I FINALLY met the alcalde (mayor) of the town. I probably went by his office 10 times trying to meet him, and he was either not there or busy. His secretary finally gave me her cell phone number to call ahead so I wouldn’t have to keep guessing and showing up. I went yesterday afternoon and after waiting for almost 2 hours I actually got some face time with the man. The meeting wasn’t too involved, we just talked a little about Peace Corps and my program and the kind of work I expect to do. I’m a little worried he wants me to work more on tourism stuff than environmental, but hopefully I can at least put an environmental spin on it. Or if I help him with what he wants at first then maybe in the future he will be more receptive of my project ideas, or more likely to support me in what I want to do. We shall see—only time will tell. He did seem pretty positive and helpful though, offering for me to use any resources or supplies at the Municipality that I may need like printing and whatnot. We have another meeting tomorrow in which he is going to officially introduce me to the people in charge of environmental work in the community. Hopefully this will help me get a better idea of what they’re doing currently and what they want to do in the future, and how I can fit into that.
This past weekend I actually helped two youth volunteers with an event they put on in Pisco for World AIDS Day. It was a big educational fair with an art contest, games, skits, and booths of informative organizations. There was a great turnout of students and public. A group of volunteers that arrived in June before me actually had a training session and were there so it was nice to meet some new volunteers and talk to them.
Other than that I’ve been trying to make my room a little more home-y. I’ve hung my maps of Peru and Ica along with some other personal things. I got a lamp for the desk my host family gave me. It’s starting to feel like my own space. Of course I am always wanting to add more personal things, so this is my shameless request for family/friends to send me printed pictures and/or postcards to hang on my wall. So far there is only one postcard hanging (thanks MQD!) but I would love to add more things to remind me of all you folks back in the States! After talking with the current volunteers I share my mailbox with, apparently we don’t have issues receiving mail including packages. So if anyone gets the urge to send something my way, feel free!! Candy, letters, pictures, incense, stickers, and surprises are always welcome.
Well that’s all I’ve got for now. This weekend we have our regional meeting so it’ll be good to meet some other volunteers from the region and see some familiar faces.
Until next time,