So I am back in Santa Rosa already...I am going to stay the night with my friend Angela (by the way, her blog site is www.pcvangelag.blogspot.com if you wanna read it ever...she just started it). She just got an apartment in Santa Rosa and is moving into it this weekend. Plus it'll be fun to stay up late and talk in English...sweet English.
Anyways, yesterday I woke up really early, about 5:30, to go running with my host sis Estellita, who is 16. The sun had just come up and there was a slight mist over all the green hills....just gorgeous. I don't know if it is practical but I am going to bring my camera next time. We ran all around Dulce Nombre, up and down the streets, some cobblestone, some dirt, and some hills brought awesome views. I am going to make my dad and brother wake up early with me when they come visit to go on a morning run :) I think in total we ran/walked about 5 km. Hopefully I can keep it up.
And I suppose you might be curious as to what the title of this post means. Well I went horseback riding! It was so fun. Horses, riding in the back of pickup trucks, and buses are the main sources of transportation here. Men and women and children are always trotting by on their way to work or as they run errands. I love it. So my host family has a few horses the 4 of us "kids" took out two horses. I sat in the saddle up front and "drove" and my host brother, 12 year old Fito, sat behind me on the horses butt. He was not happy back there and I eventually got Estella behind me. So at first I was really unsteady and only wanted to walk around. But they I sorta learned how to steer the horse and eventually we started having races. Picture this: two girls sitting on a horses, gallopìng madly down a dirt street and screaming the whole way. It was so fun. I am sure I made a professional impression on the community. We rode around town for about 2 hours, and of course, today my posterior is pretty sore. But I can't wait to go again. I am tempted to buy a horse like some volunteers do during their service but I don't feel like dealing with the responsibility. I think a kitty is much more ideal for me. So I think I will just borrow a horse every now and then :)
Later in the day I had to find my counterpart to fill out this form for Peace Corps, an emergency action plan form that had various phone numbers of people in the community, a site map with landmarks like local pulperias (convenience stores) or churches, a 2 way radio frequency in case the phones go down (I am still working on that), etc. So I got my first taste of what it is like living in a town of only 7000 people. I get to my counterpart's house and discover she isn't there like she said she would be. So I went over and asked the neighbor where she might be and he said "Don Juan"´s and pointed towards town. Now I had no idea who Don Juan was so I decided to just walk in the general of the center of town and hope that I saw her. Well I see someone on the street that I knew so I go over to say hi to her. She is talking with a man and she introduces him. Apparently he produces the town's local television station. Now don't go getting any high-tech images in your head - he had a little hand held video camera like mine. Well he says he wants an interview. Meanwhile I am sweaty and tired and am not in the mood to speak Spanish on camera for the benefit of the whole town. Well he would not be persuaded of the badness of this idea so he pointed the camera at me and started recording. I muttered some works about what I was doing here and I think I said something about forgetting most people's names that I have been meeting (good job Lauren) and that I would be continuing the former volunteer's work, etc. But mainly I just stood there looking at him and smiling awkwardly. Then it was over. But he says, this will only be the first of many interviews. So I said, ok so next time I see you on the street I will run away. He looks confused for a second, and I explain it was a joke...but not really. I think it would be cool to do a health program with him though about HIV/AIDS or something. So I go back to talking to my friend and ask her if she knows Don Juan. She does and she proceeds to take me there. Eventually we get to the house and there I find my counterpart! Now where else but in a small town would that have been possible?
Ok well, I hope you all have a great weekend. And I will be thinking of all you UVAers who are going to Foxfields next week - no fair! I have all my pictures from last year though, I will just have to be there in memory. Vaya pues...ya me voy.