last entry from Rio Chiquito!

Published: March 18th 2006
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hey there everyone!
so this website is finally making sense to me... for the FIRST time i just read everyones blogs to me!! thanks to everyone who´s reading and replying, it makes me smile just seeing the update of your lives! i miss hearing your voices on the phone or in person, but knowing you´re doing well and keeping in touch makes me feel connected !
so since i´ve last written...hmmmm...
the canadian group has improved our dynamics immensely! not that we were unbearable, but we certainly werent expressing ourselves well to eachother. we´ve got an open communication system going on now . Aunt Mary you´re right when you say that these are the most valuable lessons i´ll learn this year! I love our two leaders Karina and Elli, they each are so uniquely funny, I wish you could meet them! The pictures will be along soon though! Its great to have leaders that delegate, but then let us do all the work. We´re acutally learning more knowing that they leave our work, commuication with community members and freedom on days to Canas up to US. as for the canadians , i love each of them . i´ve never lived so closely with 7 other individuals, and knowing that they know me inside and out by now makes me feel so good, because they acutally still like me!! ahha crazy ´guinea pig´screams(banff buddies, they hear it too.. i dont think they hear it as much because im afraid to bring it out in front of the costa ricans, but they are in awe of my volume all the same!)
It seems crazy to think that we´re almost leaving Rio Chiquito! We drive to our next project at San Gabriel on wednesday. I dont think I will miss anyone in the community more than the kids. There are only 16 in the class, but the beauty in a small school is that we know each of them by name and personality . I feel a strong bond between so many of them...I listed some names last time i think. now there are some kids our age added in there too ! This week we put on two seminars for the community , one on water conservation and one on Leadership and Team Work, and after the one last night (water) we had about 10 teens stay back and continue conversation (mostly in spanish, they only learn a bit of english in school) . we started chatting about the differences in water in our countries, then that led into our schooling backgrounds, which somehow led into a crazy group singalong of Celine Dions MY HEART WILL GO ON from Titanic!!!!! ahhh i was in heaven, not because i love that song(shhh secretly im still head over heels for Leo DeCap..!) but because it was so beautiful to realize that no matter the cultural differences or language barrier ... we could connect over something as simple as singing. They invited us to a kareoke bar tonight (just down the road from our town) and of course we´re waiting in much anticipation for tonights adventure!
Tomorrow we´re going to the river with them, Rio Chiquito. not sure if its clean enough to swim in ,but either way its an excuse to take the work clothes off, but on a suit and dip our dirty dirty feet in some running water! (the amount of times I day dream about after project when we all head to the carribean coast is ridiculous!!)
as for work, its been a challenge to say the least this week. we feel as if we´re working our butts off day in day out, be it for the kids and their english classes or for the community at large for their roofs, fences and kitchens. the challenging aspect has been receiving negative feedback from some community members. although its only the ones not working alongside us that our giving us these harsh comments, its still hard to hear. there are many reasons for them feeling this way i guess... most of which are muffled by language and communication barriers. there are two or three men from the community that are giving us odd jobs to complete each day slash week... although they mean well,its been difficult to be under their leadership recently. they will give us a job, but then 10 mins later tell us the supplies havent arrived. or they will give us a job , then tell us we´re doing it wrong and to watch them while they work at it. most of the time im able to laugh and continue to practice my broken spanish with them...but there have been times recently where I just want to lash out in english! haha of course i dont take that last option. The really cool part is I´m learning how to deal with these obstacles, and learning im capable of dealing with them! who knew! i have never run into alot of these type of problems in canada, at least the whole language and cultural difference one.
on food.... no meat, gosh i miss it. but the fruit is making up for the lack of protein in our diets. not literaly, but it makes me happy to eat pinapple, water apples and mango on a daily basis. because its sooo hot (about 35) we try to stick to carbs only at meals, and overwhlem ourselves with clean veggies and fruits at snacks. my new favourite fruit (only ever thought of as a body shop product before) is PASSION FRUIT! its a party in your mouth, no joke. lots of impanatas, tamalas, and rice. mmm rice is my best friend. well only if we have soy sauce to go with it.(whcih they call China Sauce in Costa Rica)
ohh random fun fact... my wisdom teeth are growing in!!! yeehaaa! after several painful nights spent with excesive sweating in my new sleepingbag´, i called my parents teary eyed trying to cover up my anxiety! haha knowing me too well, they caught on and calmed me down. thanks again guys , dont know where id be without your presription for the drugs that were neatly packed away in my backpack. haha. they are SO much better now ..i cant acutally open my mouth to eat a pinapple..., im just finishing up the zirtho today. hopefully they dont give me more trouble, because i still am set on traveling for a good 2 weeks after project.
I am on the hunt for stamps today, so hopefully some people will be receiving postcards, if you gave me your address that is!
i signed on msn today hoping id get some familar web faces.... however its 730 am for most of you sooooo looks like im outa luck! msn never seems to work out for me anymore. lol
cant wait to hear back from you .... pls blog me i will be very excited to check this next time, seeing as im now capable of using my own website!!!!
pura vida, keep smiling, peace and love,
hils xoxoxo
ps. we painted the prettiest mural this week on the school, its flowery and beautiful. i made 4 amazing flowers, and then of course, the last one i called to be mine to paint....i screwed up big time and made it look like a pink alien flower. ouch! but somehow the rest of the flowers compliment it . again , you´ll see pics soon i promise.


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