Thursday, June 26, 2008
A huge bug that I talked about in an earlier post that was dead on the street, apparently these are quite common in the summer, I can´t wait!
Sunset at the soccer field
San Juan sac race! I wish I could make this picture bigger (you can click to make it a little bigger), because the look on everyone´s faces are priceless, especially Sasha (the girl bending down in the background)!! The boys were winning, but they took each other down, and I hopped around them to take the lead, but they got back up and beat me anyways :( But I was laughing so hard I couldn´t even hop.
Although most of my San Juan celebrations were fun, I had an accident with one of the fire games and burned my hand. It´s a long story, but I will upload the pictures probably next week!
Monday, June 23, 2008
This is on one of the only paved roads in my town, I don´t know why this cow was walking down it
This is when we went to visit the Rural Economic Development group at their temporary site, it was really beautiful out there
learning how to transplant plants at the training center
The Muni girls minus Rebecca at a San Juan festival
This is when I was in San Lorenzo, the second biggest city in Paraguay, and I was interviewed on the radio for a radio show they were having about the municipality. It was pretty comical considering it was all in Spanish.
It has so much to offer…
Here are some of the top:
- The biggest underground aquifer in the world (under the
- It’s the only country that has a different code of arms on the front and back of the flag (a star and a lion)
- Contains the last frontier of South America (the
- The biggest operating dam in the world (Itaipu, soon to be topped by three gorges)
- Equal-distance from every coast of
- Fertile soil and beautiful flowers
- Colorado political party is the oldest party to be in power in the world, but it will be somewhat replaced, by a new party, mix of liberales and colorados, starting August 15th, when the new president elect Lugo, the former bishop, swears in.
- Highest population growth rate in
- We beat
- Had the longest dictatorship in
- I think it has the fastest deforestation rate in the world, but at least in
- Everything, Paraguayans are so hospitable it’s ridiculous, especially when you consider how little they have
- Games with fire- I’ll try to upload a video from the San Juan Festival (saint of fire)
- Lots of tea
- Parties until 6 in the morning
- Lots of music and dancing
- Lots of culture and traditions
As a side note, the legacy of the dictatorship is very detrimental to the creation of a fully-functioning democracy. For 60-some years there was no civil society and groups more than two people were not allowed to congregate, with the exception of family members. This has led to a generation that has no idea what steps they should even take to hold their government accountable. Civic education is critical for the upcoming generation, if they want to decrease the governmental corruption that is rampant in the country currently. This fact makes my future job especially difficult because it can be very difficult to organize people and motivate people to hold their municipalities accountable as well as demand the services they are being promised.
The festival of
Some of the traditional foods eaten during this time are mbeyu (in Guarani) which is kind of like a cheesy bread pancake made with flour of mandioca, I like it a lot for a snack. Also, a type of empanada that is also made out of their favorite food, mandioca. I don’t know if I’ve talked much about mandoica, but it is at every meal, without fail. They eat it like bread, and they dip it their food, or just eat it on the side. If you don’t know, it’s a very starchy vegetable, kind of like a potato, and they fry on it occasion and make something similar to a French fry. I try not to eat it much because it doesn’t add much to the meal and it is a load of empty calories, and they already over feed me as it is.
They also have lots of traditional dances, two that I learned about is the “chipera” which means seller of Chipa (a cheesy bread they sell in the streets) and the girls dance around with chipa trays haha. The other one is “solita” where one person sits on the chair and the members from the opposite sex dance around the chair. I was preschoolers do it when I went to observe a class and it was sooo cute, I’ll try to post that too. There are tons of traditional dances and another cool one is with the pots on their heads and they dance all around while balancing the pots on their heads and they even laid on the floor and rolled to their backs, it was pretty impressive. The traditional music consists of guitar and harp music for the most part, usually with a singer as well.Tonight and tomorrow are the most important days of the festival, so I´m curious to see what else they have in store!!
Sunday, June 8, 2008
These are my scary dogs, not looking so scary at the moment... but don´t be fooled
This is Frederico, who can also be scary and part of our patio with well in back
This is my host sister and one of the cutest 1 year olds in the world, drinking the drink that Paraguayans swear by, Terrere
Thats all for now, I probably won´t be able to update this for a while. MISS YOU ALL :)
Friday, June 6, 2008
It`s unfortunate because my latest picture is of a bug that looks like a fly but is the size of my hand!! it´s gross! today it is really hot even though it is supposed to be further into winter than when we arrived, but apparently the cold and then hot temperature changes are very common for Paraguay! If I had to guess I´d say it´s 85 and the humidity os at 92 percent, according to my profe.
Here is some more info from my Journal-
Last night I really felt like I was a part of the family. Everyone calls me Tia (aunt) Julie and I took care of the baby and it was really nice. I hope that my Spanish can get better and my Guarani so that I can get more of what they are saying, as well as a lot of the jokes.
Today we did a tour of everyone’s houses and I was surprised to see basically everyone’s house was nicer than mine and I thought I had it good! Everyone is so hospitable and everyone invited us in to eat and drink something and by the end of the tour I couldn’t eat or drink anything else. That is until we got to my house and I had a café con leche. One house had a pig that wasn’t full grown and it was soo nice. I’m glad I don’t have that at my house because I would feel bad eating it later. I already feel bad about eating the chickens that run around the house. There was one on the kitchen table today, which made it seem like it was just asking to be eaten. I’ve never eaten more meat in my life. Hot dog for breakfast, carne asado (I’m not sure what it is.. ribs?) for lunch, chicken for dinner. We also had this food called chipaguas’y.. That would be my guess on how to spell it, but it was really yummy. Basically a type of corn blended with onions, eggs and cheese… it was kind of like corn bread and kind of like Tortilla in
That´s all for now !!
I would draw a smiley but I can´t find the right keys!
Wednesday, June 4, 2008
The title of this blog is a well known joke in South America which translated into English means “
The house is open air, which is probably really nice in the summer, but right now it’s about 40 degrees and there is no escaping the cold. I am super super glad I brought that sleeping bag, because I’m only slightly cold at night, and it gets down to 32 F. I’ve been sick since staging and they gave me some yuyo (pronounced JuuJoo) as a remedy. It’s basically hot water with different herbs from their garden. I don’t know if it’s just a coincidence but I am starting to feel a little better. My family told me not to wash my hair this morning because I will get even more sick, so I didn’t. They have some interesting ideas about health and similar topics. I don’t know about this one, but apparently owning cats makes you infertile. We don’t have any cats here.
The town we are in is very cute, all the roads are a mix of really red dirt and cobblestones. But mostly it is dirt. There is a main road that runs through the town that is paved but that’s all. There are many animals running around, like in
The water here is apparently a lot cleaner than the rest of
Another interesting thing about
MUCH LOVE!! miss you all!