I am halfway through Week 2, continuing my work at Jardin de Amor in Santa Maria. My day started with breakfast at Violetta’s. She made everyone a breakfast quesadilla consisting of eggs with ham, watermelon and apples on the side, and coffee of course.
After breakfast, my group, my mentor (Eduardo), and I head out to catch a ride on one of the chicken buses heading to Santa Maria. On the way to the chicken buses, Eduardo pointed out that Volcano Acatenango had snow at the very top of the volcano. This is the first time any of us have seen snow on any of the volcanoes, we know it gets cold at the top but we did not think it would get cold enough to snow!
Thankfully today the chicken bus was not as packed as it usually is; therefore we all got our own seat this morning and could relax a little on the ride. We arrived at Santa Maria at 0800, and headed over the school Jardin de Amor. On the way there, there are always people selling food, clothes, antiques, and a lot of other things at the supermarket in the town square. Also, we always see a lot of stray dogs running around, and people riding on horses.
When we got to the school, my group and I immediately got to work. We were tasked with painting a couple walls today with a light blue paint. A group of painters from Spain are coming to the school soon in order to paint some nice pictures on the walls for the kids.
We painted two long walls, and it took us about three hours to complete. Once we finished painting, our mentor Eduardo asked my group if we wanted to play tug of war with the kids in the playground. They had me and Anderson Melendez go first, which was a long and very close battle. He unfortunately beat me, but cut his hands from rope burn as a result. John Curran was up next against four of the students who were about eight years old, and lost.
After having some fun at the school, we decided to head back to Violetta’s for lunch. We hopped on a chicken bus that was much more packed compared to this morning, and we all fell asleep except for Eduardo. He woke us up at 1230 when we arrived in Antigua, and headed over to Violetta’s. She made us a really nice plate of chicken patties, rice, squash, and tortillas of course. I ate everything in less than five minutes because I was starving.
In Spanish I learned the verbs ser, tener, haber, and estar. I am making some progress with Spanish, although it is difficult for me to learn. Luckily my teacher, Ingrid is very patient with me; therefore I enjoy my Spanish lessons with her.
My Spanish lesson ended at 1700, and I was indecisive on where I want to go for dinner. The whole group and I decided that we are going to go to Ricon Typico, and we went right after our Spanish lesson. I got the Estofado, which is a plate of pork, rice, and coleslaw. Needless to say this meal filled me up and it was very tasty. After dinner we all headed back to the hostel to work on homework and relax for the night.
Step inside Ricon Typico. Imagine that you are enjoying a meal with the cadets.