Wednesday, May 23, 2012

A week in the life of a summer intern

Dana, Juliana, Karianne, and I stayed in Xela for the weekend while the others hiked up Tajumulco. We had a blast and ate some delicious food at the hostel, El Cuartito, and Blue Angel, two of Dana's favorite restaurants. On Saturday, we had a relaxing afternoon at Las Fuentes Georginas, 3 hot springs located in the mountains. In the evening, we got to witness all of the excitement and commotion of the city after Xela won the championship soccer game against Guatemala City. We even got to see the Xela team's bus parade around the city!

On Monday after our weekly morning meeting, we went to the market and bought TONS of food for the week. Besides Christina and Cam, we didn't have any classes. Some of us ran some errands in Pana, or went to Spanish school. Upon our return we cooked a delicious meal of fajitas and finished off with some casual mustache-shaped sugar cookies.

The following day, all of the interns went to Chaquijyá bright and early in the morning to teach nutrition to 3rd and 4th graders in Cooperativa and Central. We all had the opportunity to practice our Spanish and teach a little about the food pyramid to the children. We ended the lesson with fun activities such as "Simon Dice" (Simon Says) and Gato y Raton (Cat and Mouse) to emphasize the importance of physical activity. Before our after school English classes with Dana and Cam, we visited the absolutely beautiful Catholic Church in Chaq, and a few of us even went on the roof!

On Wednesday, we traveled 2 hours to Comalapa to work with another NGO, Long Way Home. They were rebuilding the Tecnico Maya Vocational School with solely refurbished and reused materials! The various buildings were being made from old plastic bottles stuffed with trash, rubber tires, or earth bag domes (polypropylene sacks). It was crazy to see how much could be done with recycled materials, and how every single step of their process was sustainable (including human waste!). We had such a fun time packing, tossing, and throwing mud balls to fill the spaces in between the half-built rubber tire wall foundation. It was great to have the opportunity to see what kind of work other non-profits in Guatemala were doing. Everything about the project and the organization were resourceful, creative, and inspiring, to say the least. 
As you can tell, we've been having an AMAZING time here, and I can't believe we're almost halfway done! We have a ton of exciting things coming up with mini-camps for our kids and weekend trips, so keep checking back for our next blog post!

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