Lauren's Peace Corps Experience in Honduras

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed and experiences described in this travelogue are mine personally. Nothing written here should be interpreted as official or unofficial Peace Corps literature or as sanctioned by the Peace Corps or the U.S. government. I have chosen to write about my experience online in order to update family and friends; I am earning no money whatsoever from this endeavor. Please do not copy or forward any of these contents without my permission.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Feria Fun

Well it's feria time in Dulce Nombre, this month of September.

I somehow managed to get sucked into the festivities this past weekend. As you all know, I am on the committee for this new library in Dulce Nombre. Well the committee decided to make a float for the "Carosa" parade on Saturday. I was just supposed to take a few pictures with my digital camera to send to the Rieken Foundation, and that's it. The parade started at 10 am, supposedly, but I had agreed to help some high school kids make an improved stove at 8 am. So I run up to my house about quarter to 10, muddy, a mess, and dunk my head in the pila real quick to make it look like I was clean (I have a related update on my water situation, but it will follow) and changed my clothes real quick. So I run to the central park at 10 on the dot - I still haven't been able to let go of my punctual tendencies, dangit. There I spent an hour in the strong sun, snapping pictures of the somewhat unfortunate looking library float, and the other more attractive floats. Right before they set off, an hour late of course, another person on the committee says, Lauren, get up on that float. No, I say, I have no desire to go on it, No No No...there is already a girl up there ready to go. No, she says, you have to go to help hold down the flower pots we put up there. I really don't want to, please. But in the end, I give in, thinking it won't be that big of a deal and not to worry so much about it. I was wrong. We set off, and I enjoy the first 5 minutes, throwing candy to the kids and waving. Then the crappy roads start and I am hanging on for dear life, one foot holding down a big flower pot, and the other hand grabbing a flower put up on a pillar, my last hand with a death grip on the side rail of the trailer. Those flower pots were such a terrible idea, the dirt was spraying all over me. So went my next two hours. The bad parts of the roads would come and go, but it didn't matter, I was miserable. Of course, I had to smile and laugh the whole time because I was up there in front of the whole town. I got sunburned, because I hadn't expected to be in the sun so long (my original job being to take a few pictures) and was just wearing a tank top. Half way through my ordeal, I pleaded with another member of the committee to come up and relieve me of my duty, but she refused, thus starting my anger. I was mad until about 2 hours after the parade. Finally it ended, I jumped off and escaped to the internet cafe to down an orange juice and complain. I didn't wait around for the judging part. Our float by that point was a mess of flowers, dirt, candy wrappers. People in the town said, I later heard, what a shame that the prettiest girl was on the ugliest float! Haha, I wasn't the prettiest girl up there, but I have to agree that our float was pretty sad looking. Anyway, I will never again succumb to peer pressure.

Later that afternoon I got in a better mood because the youth group I have been helping with put on a show for their parents, with theater, pantomimes, music, stilt walking, and puppets. It was great, and I was really proud of them.

That night, even though I was exhausted from making the stove that morning, the parade, and the youth event, I got convinced to "pass by" the dance that was going on that night. We ended up staying until 12 midnight or so, and I danced with various guy friends. It was pretty fun actually, letting off some steam. My exhaustion finally caught up with me and I begged my friend Maria Luisa to get going with me. Sunday night I also went to a dance, but only for an hour. It was supposed to be a "carnival" outside, but due to light rain they movied the dance indoors. So I danced again, but only for a bit, with my friends Ephrain, Maria, and Geovany - we four are pretty much always hanging out.

Tonight, Tuesday night, we are going to Santa Rosa to celebrate Ephrain's birthday. We will probably go out for dinner and then do some dancing - I do a lot of dancing down here if you can't tell :)

Other than that, this week I am busy with the latrine project (I am finishing up in Dulce Nombre - this afternoon I am giving out the roofs - too bad about 60 latrines still haven't been started in Concepcion and San Juan because the mayor is always traveling and can't get his part of the deal straightened out). Also I am having fun without water. I haven't had water in my house for about 10 days...that's a lot. Apparently there is a busted tube below my house and the water company had to shut off my water. They aren't sure when it will be able to be fixed. I talked the water guy and paid him some money to buy stuff, and my closest-in-proximity adoptive parents (Ana and Dr. Ephrain, friends of my boss in Teguc who feel responsible for me) are putting pressure on the poor guy to get the thing fixed. In the meantime, I am taking showers at Ana's place, who lives about 5 houses from me. I bought a bunch of disposable plates, cups and napkins so I wouldn't have to wash so many dishes. It's hard to cook also, without water. I have to use my big bottle of purified water, which is a pain. Last night it rained really hard so I filled up a lot of large buckets with water to wash my dishes and flush the toilets. It's kinda funny in a way, that I am collecting rain water! Anyway, as you turn on your faucets, take a moment to appreciate the luxury of available water, especially available hot water. We really don't appreciate it much in the states.

Well that's about it in my exciting life. Take care everybody, and I miss you!


  • At September 6, 2005 at 1:34 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Things I Hate About TV: unrealistic technology
    When computers are on screen they are using some system that requires no mouse for even the most ... A second tech peeve, and CSI and 24 are the biggest offenders of this one, what's with that enhance section 6 by 47 crap?
    Nice blog. I'll come back on occasion to see what happens next.

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  • At September 19, 2005 at 1:08 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    hey lauren, i know what are you saying about the running water...i just got back from tonga w/ justin. hope you get it back soon! Britt


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