Don Alvaro the horse guide.
So here I sit still in Salento day 19, July 4th 2011. Salento is so peaceful. Let me tell you about a typical day. My alarm is set for 8:30. Sometimes I get up before it goes off, or I might sleep for an extra 10-15 minutes. I don't have to get up but I do want to keep some kind of schedule. Beside breakfast is served from 7-10 and it is included with your room. Breakfast is 2 eggs, a roll, and 2 cups of coffee with fresh raw milk straight from the cow. I don't normally drink coffee but when I travel it is free so I drink it. I drink 2 cups here at La Serrena because Jon makes good old American coffee. Usually coffee is very strong and bitter so it is hard to get the right amount of cream and sugar for a decent cup. It is too sweet or too bitter. Here I can add 2 spoons of sugar and some milk and it is perfect. I am trying to wean myself off the sugar and just drink it black or with a little bit of Milk. I sometime bring 2 eggs of my own
Salento sunset 1
and add 2 egg whites as eggs are fairly cheap but I don't really need the added cholesterol. You can add bacon or chorizo (Latin style sausage), juice, granola, a smoothie, or even french toast to breakfast (desayuno) for a small fee. But I am cheap so the 2 or 4 eggs are good for me.
After breakfast I take a little walk around the farm to play with a couple of the dogs, maybe see the cows, but mainly just survey the property and enjoy the view and fresh air. Now don't misunderstand me, it is short, only about 5-15 minutes in total. I then check my email and take a look at the New York Times website as well as the Vegas paper. About 10-10:30 Don Alvaro comes around with the horses for the people who are going out riding for that day. I love the horses and wish I could go riding everyday but I am on a budget so I just help tend to the horses and help people saddle up. After that I will surf the inter-webs or read. There is a great selection of magazines and small library of books to choose from.
Salento sunset 2
Yesterday I took a couple of magazines of short stories and poems to the hammock and read all afternoon with a little bit of dozing off.
Lunch is usually something left over from what I cooked last night or maybe some crackers and ham or even Coco Krispies with fresh milk. I am trying to add more fresh fruit to my diet, we'll see how that goes.
Yesterday I went out to the field and hung out with the cows and take some photos. In the afternoon it is more reading, surfing the internet, or maybe a movie. I'll mix in a little trip to town to get some groceries for the night.
Last night I cooked some chicken I picked up the day before along with some potatoes, onion and peppers. We even started a little bonfire later in the evening.
I have been staying at La Serrena for 2 weeks now. They have some volunteers who work from 5-11 PM during the week and noon-11PM on the weekends. You check people in after the receptionist goes home and before the night watchman come in. You get towels, sell the beer, Cokes, wines and various
Salento sunset 3
other things that are for sale and just generally help out and advise the visitors. Also do early check in/check out before the receptionist comes in about 8:30 AM. There is a daily dinner at 7PM so the volunteers sometimes help with that. I was told that the volunteers get to eat for free but that seemed to be about it. Now I can cook for myself and actually enjoy it so it didn't seem like anything that I was particularly interested in. In the past couple days 4 of the volunteers left so there were only 2 left. That's when I found out that the volunteers get a free bed as well. I wish I had known that the whole time, I'm like sign me up. Wish I had known that 2 weeks ago. I am waiting to hear from a place about 3 hours east of here where I can do some real volunteer work with school children. So in the meantime I can stay here another week, or two, or even three. we'll see how it goes.
Meanwhile meet Don Alvaro the horse guide and some photos of the sunset in Salento.
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