Thursday, July 22, 2010

Last Day in Yantalo

Today was our last day in Yantalo. As I write this we are on a bus headed for Lima. I was surprised how sad I was to leave. It is the end of one chapter and the beginning of another. I was also surprised to see Junior and Freddy at my house to say goodbye. Freddy was crying as I hugged him. “Te quiero ver profesional,” I told him. Junior, for the first time, didn't have a smile on his face and didn't make fun of me (He`s usually like a parrot- he repeats everything I say and laughs- except parrots don´t laugh). I will miss those kids. You know, I always thought that maybe these kids were coming to our english classes, our web design classes and everything else just because they were bored and didn't have anything else to do. I now realize that it was just because they wanted to hang out with us. I have to admit, sometimes they really tried my patience. I feel like now it was never really that hard to suffer through. This has been a really awesome time and I´ve gotten really close to the people.
Dr. Vasquez called us a couple days ago and said we are the best volunteers he´s ever had. That means a lot. I know we´ve worked really hard here, but I think what has made the biggest impression is that the nature of our work has dealt so heavily with people. We´ve lived with and learned from and taught them for months- most of the other volunteers have not been here very long and have worked on projects that are a little less personal- perhaps. Anyway- it still feels awesome to hear that from him. He seems like he can be kind of hard to please.
I´m off to visit my converts and friends in the rest of Perù now. It´s the end of one chapter and the beginning of another.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

July 5, 2010

I had a productive day today, although I didn't finish everything I set out to do. I was hoping that today I could finish my next physiology and anatomy lesson- which is supposed to be about the digestive and nervous system. I also wanted to write one of the papers for my cultural proofs class and do 50 pages of reading. I started on my presentation and did about 30 pages of reading, but I didn't start on my paper. I think the important thing is that I worked the whole day without stopping. We continued teaching about parasites in the colegio. I often fail to mention these day to day things that are part of our work here. I don't know why, but I guess since they have become such routine tasks I feel like there isn't much to report.
There are some exciting things that are happening with the parasite education and treatment, however. Linnea, Xochi and I are teaching the high school kids so they can then teach the younger primaria kids. They have come up with some great ideas so far. The most exciting thing for me is to see that the kids are taking part in the learning experience. I know that this will mean that they retain and apply more of what they learn here. Another exciting thing is that the kids came into the nurses office to get their names on the list so that on Wednesday they will get their first parasite cleansing pills. The government is sponsoring this project so all the kids in school get the parasite cleansing pills in the next month.
I continue working with the students from Rochester to finish their prostate cancer research. I was able to give the surveys to 5 men over 50 this evening. If we continue at this pace we can be done in the next couple days. It's exciting that we will be able to finish the whole population so quickly. There is a possibility that we may go to a smaller village just outside of Yantalo before we leave, but our data may be sufficient with the surveys we do here in town only.
I'm excited to continue working. I want to work hard this week because we have a fun trip planned for the weekend. Wish me luck, I want to be really productive in the next couple days.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Happy B-Day Mom!

Things have been going really well down here. I started a few new things this week. I'm now going door to door with my buddies Thilan and Viral and we're talking to the men over 50 about prostate health. I grew a beard (sparce) and a left the mustache (still sparce). Photos to follow. I also started working out with my new roomies (T and V) and we're going to get ripped! haha
In other news, my Mom's birthday is tomorrow! Let's make it a special day for her! Love you mom! I miss you!
This week the PE professor, Jorge Lucana started teaching the Anatomy and Physiology material in the school! Jenny and I are really excited that he's doing it himself. Next week we start on the nervous and digestive systems. Every time I have to prepare a lesson I learn to love it a little more. :)
I'd like to close with a scripture I've been thinking about lately.
Helaman 11:23
And in the seventy and ninth
year there began to be much strife.
But it came to pass that Nephi and
Lehi, and many of their brethren
who knew concerning the true points
of doctrine, having many arevelations
daily, therefore they did
preach unto the people, insomuch
that they did put an end to their
strife in that same year.

I want to be able to recieve that kind of light. There are a lot of distractions in the world that take our focus away from what is important- and cause strife (all kinds of problems) but if we know the true doctrine by filling ourselves with light, we can solve these problems.