SIIIIIITTTTTTEEEEE!!!!

Alright Everyone!

As usual, so much has happened since the last time I wrote, but we’ll start with the most life altering!

WE FOUND OUT OUR SITES!!!!

awesome

I am going to be spending the next two years of my life in Celica, Ecuador! Celica is located in Loja province and I’m pretty much a couple hours away from Peru. I am in the mountains but I’m only a few hours away from the coastal region of El Oro. At first I was a little disappointed because I really wanted to be on the coast but I am so excited about the work I’ll be doing and also that I’m close to one of my friends from training so I’m pretty much like…

boo-yah

I am going to be the first volunteer in this site so I am going to be starting from scratch. This makes me feel a little like…

bites-fist

But every volunteer in Ecuador has a counterpart organization that they will work with and I’ll be working with The Red Cross so I’m sure I’ll get a lot of support from them so I also feel like…

Bill-Murray-Caddyshack

On to other news…

Father’s day here WAS AMAZING! We celebrated at my host Dad’s parent’s house and they rented tables and chairs and had a Mariachi band called The Tequila Show come and play!!! FREAKIN’ AWESOME!!! We danced like this…

boogie-nights-dancing-mark-wahlberg-john-c-reilly

And ate a mountain of food and then danced some more and then some people at the party played music and sang and then we came home and had our own celebration…

One of the customs here that I saw in action on Father’s day is that everyone shares one glass when drinking alcohol. Literally they will open a bottle of beer, which is bigger here than in America, and fill up a glass and hand it to a guest. The guest will drink the glass and they will move around to everyone in the party. At first I was kinda like…

judgmental-face

But now I’m more like…

apathy

It’s really interesting, they did this with beer, rum and coke and even wine. Definitely different from the States.

Another difference that I wanted to talk about is the FOOD! Overall the food here is pretty normal, the only thing I’ve really noticed is that they eat rice at every meal and they stack their starches like CRAZY! I’ve literally had meals of rice, potatoes and bread! I’m not complaining, I love me some carbs! 🙂

They also eat a lot of plantains here and other more starchy types called verdes (translation: green) from the banana family, and yucca and as I mentioned before, rice, potatoes and bread.

As far as meat goes they eat a lot of chicken and pork and some beef.  Now, after living in China there is not much that I find CRAZY that people eat, they eat shrimp (sometimes with the casing still on) they eat fish with the bones still in it (classic China) they have soups with random organs in it (again, classic China) BUUUUUUT I did encounter something that I had never seen before in all of my travels…. A dish called Cuy (translation: GUINEA PIG!!!)…. It is served only for special occasions and the Ecuadorians LOVE IT… I got to eat it this week as a special surprise… For my host family of course I was like…

emma-stone-gif

But in my head I was like…

insane

In reality it was pretty good! It kinda tasted like dark chicken meat…

Well I think this is enough for now. Tomorrow we have to go on our tech trip which is basically going to the coast, interviewing a bunch of people, teaching  a bunch of classes and then giving a presentation when we get back about what we learned. We literally have to travel for 12 hours on a bus tomorrow…

throwing-a-fit

But I’m going with an awesome group and we get to see the BEACH so in my mind it’s going to be more like this…

Summer

I put my address in one of the tabs at the top of the blog, hopefully you can find it! Let me know if you have any problems!

Thanks for reading and keeping in touch and follow my blog if you want to get emails every time I write a new one! 🙂

Peace Out!

Courtney

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Week 2/3!

OooooooK! So these past two weeks have been CRAZY! My idea of trying to post once a week during training might not actually pan out. I’ll keep trying to post often though!

So I have actually made notes so I can remember to write about everything that’s been happening here since it’s all passing by so quickly.

Training has been so intense it feels like I’m back in high school, there are so many assignments and presentations and it all seems like it’s happening at the same time. In the past week I had to give 4 different presentations and 3 of them were in Spanish! (no pressure) Wednesday we had 3 out of those 4 presentations so now you can understand why I haven’t been posting. Right now I’m kind of like…

need-help

But you know me, power through!

So highlights from the past two weeks!

I had/have been having some weird allergic reactions to stuff and at one point had a rash on my face… so my host mom decided that I had an allergy to the cold and put hot baby powder on my face and then proceeded to call me a mime all night… I definitely obliged and did some sweet acting moves…

mime-invisible-wall

Next, I got to hand wash my clothes (two weeks’ worth) on a concrete slab that hopefully I’ll take a picture of so I can show you what I’m talking about… needless to say… that took FOREVER and taught me to wear my clothes A LOT more before I wash them…

ewface

and/or do my laundry every week…

daft-punk

After my lovely laundry event, I then had to iron my clothes because it’s considered very rude to wear wrinkled clothes here… this honestly has been the first time in my life that I have ironed my t-shirts but you know, when in Ecuador!

coy-dunno

Two weekends ago, I actually got my first experience “traveling” around Ecuador! We went 2 hours away (changing 3 buses) to go to the Middle of the World! I was on the Equator in Ecuador! It was really fun! My host Mom was out of town so my host Dad actually took me and 5 other volunteers there. I was so happy that he came with us because otherwise we would’ve gotten sooooooo lost! There was a HUGE tourist attraction/park and a line going down the middle of it with a tower and everything! Now I can say that I’ve stood on both hemispheres at the SAME TIME!

Jealous!? I know you are! 🙂

Since then we’ve been working really hard at the Training Center. Last week I gave a presentation about Values to a class of 10 years olds and this week I taught 2 groups of 12 year olds about theater and also about non-formal education (aka. GAMES!). Remember that this was all in Spanish… I know what you’re thinking… How did she do it!? Well, I just messed up, A LOT! AND it was a blast! I really learned a lot and had a ton of fun with the kids… Afterwards I was pretty much like:

yeah-nailed-it1

This week we also had to give presentations for Peace Corps about a community we did research in, but that presentation was in English! It was also graded so hopefully I passed, otherwise I won’t be able to swear in as a Peace Corps volunteer in 8 weeks… If that happens, you’ll find me doing this:

robin-llorando

Other than that I’ve been living large! I’m having so much fun, making friends, learning Spanish and learning about the culture here. I am so happy to be where I am! Couldn’t ask for more… Ok except, Whataburger… but, other than that, I’m GREAT!

If you would like to get my address here then I can try to send it to you or even try to post it somewhere on the blog if I can figure out how! 🙂

I hope to hear from all of you soon about you and yours!

Miss you all!

Peace out!