My time in San Vicente is officially over. We finished our technical training last Friday with a fun game and sports day, which was designed to help us with preparing camps and organizing sports events for kids and communities. Hands down one of my favorite days because we played lots of sports – naturally. Backing up though, I have to recap at least the highlights for training part dos.
Overall, training is long, tiring, and draining both mentally and emotionally. I am sure I said this in my posts leading up to training and during pre service training, but it is true. I think this time was harder though because we had no free time whatsoever and all of the sessions (most of) were so applicable to our sites that it made it imperative to really be listening and paying attention. We had sessions on everything but some of my favorites include: making arts and crafts including piñatas, bracelets, purses, the sports, learning about getting stoves, letrines, and potable water, as well as the session on making shampoo, disinfectant, and hair gel. I also really enjoyed the lectures on teaching business courses and how to help kids here plan for the future. I hope to use these ideas in my site, especially the arts and crafts ones. But that is a lot of information to grasp and understand all in a two week period, so it really is overwhelming just thinking about how to apply these ideas in site.
But as I continue to complain about training, I also have to talk about the absolutely wonderful breaks we had. We had quite a few field trips (including a fun interactive children’s museum with bubbles!) and hotel stays not only in the capital but also in the western part of the country near Ataco. We stayed in this amazing hotel where the rooms are like log cabins in the woods and they are surrounded by beautiful flowers. The cabins have all you need including standard bathrooms, televisions, nice big beds, and a full on kitchen area. But I am not sure why you would use the kitchen area. Dios mio, the food was to die for. We had big plates of pasta, giant pancakes, warm bread with herb butter, and much more. It was like heaven on earth. I was sad that it was only one night, but luckily we have a training session there in May, so I will return soon!
Unfortunately, I had the terrible experience of coming back from this lovely paradise and seeing a dead body in the road. A man got shot in the street as we were driving in our car back to the capital. I won’t go into too many details because it was a horrible sight that I would not want any one to see. The worst part is that my boss driving the car just brushed it off like it was no big deal. It makes sense given he has grown up in a country with daily homicide rate of 16 (keep in mind Massachusetts is the same size and averages 2 a day). I feel so bad that he has grown accustomed to seeing dead bodies in the street. No one should get used to that. Ever.
I am going to end the sad part and move on to recapping the end of training. After all the field trips we just finished up in San Vicente with more lectures and then more Spanish class. Although I was incredibly tired, I was really happy to get some extra class time. I needed to work on some more advanced Spanish topics and now I realize how terribly I have been speaking. I just hope I continue to improve. I got a lot of compliments in San Vicente about my Spanish and how far I have come, so it felt really good to hear that. I just don’t want to stop improving now that I don’t have any more formal classes to go to.
Okay I need to go and write my Thanksgiving recap. Look out for that post!
post script: remember the hair cut I mentioned:
Always when possible donate your hair to Locks of Love. You can do it all the way from El Salvador. :)