A New Continent- off to Lima!

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March 18th 2011
Published: April 6th 2011
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It all began at 3:00am when my alarm went off and I quickly got ready for the day and finished my packing. I needed to be at the airport by 4:00am and made it in plenty of time, thanks to the fact that we now live a quick 10 minute drive away. That whole rest of the day is kind of a blur. I met up with the rest of our group at the airport where we exchanged names and immediately began talking and checking in- the security line at the Spokane Airport was seriously insane. Usually you go right through, but of COURSE it was crowded on the one day we needed to get to our flight. Our group consisted of the following people: Dr. John Matthews, Professor of Social Work at EWU (though he is currently a Fulbright Scholar teaching in Namibia, Africa for the year), Lindsay, Danielle (both 1st year students in my cohort and some of my close friends), Kristine, Alisa, Kerma, Jen H, Jen B, Chris, Caroline, Samantha, Lily, Barbara and Vickie. The rest of the group were BSW and MSW students from the Vancouver campus of the EWU Social Work program.

Spokane-Salt Lake City-Atlanta-Lima. We landed in Lima around 10pm after a long, long day of traveling. We had quite the eventful time getting there, as well. In Salt Lake, we managed to lose Kerma and before we knew it, our plane was taking off without her. We later learned that she had simply thought she had more time than in actuality and was eating food nearby when they were calling her name over the PA system. It was pretty stressful, and to top it all off- on that next leg of the flight, a laptop fell out of the carry-on bin and broke a passenger's nose! No one in our group, but it was pretty crazy. Luckily there happened to be two physicians on board who were able to assist the man, but we circled in the air for a bit while they were determining whether or not we needed to make a landing to get him medical attention elsewhere. I could do without the plane drama for awhile after that experience. The flight to Lima was uneventful, and I was able to watch two movies on my personal TV screen- "Easy A" and "It's Kind of a Funny Story". I would definitely recommend "Easy A!"

Going through Customs at the Lima Airport felt like a piece of cake to me after all the times we did it last year. I was the first through and also the first person to get my bag, which meant I stood around for quite some time feeling very tired, hot and thirsty. It was 11pm (9pm our body time) and we had been traveling since 4am. Our in-country coordinator/host, Edith (a Lima native), was waiting with an 'EWU!' sign and a bus to fit all of us and our luggage. She and Dr. Matthews met 6 year previously, and she does this kind of volunteer organizing as her career. We finally arrived at the hotel sometime around midnight and immediately got settled into our rooms (roommates had been previously assigned, and I was with Danielle) and fell asleep. We called down to the front desk to get a wake-up call for 7, knowing we needed to be downstairs by 8...


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