In other news Eric and I have been in our site for almost three months and we have been in Ecuador for almost six months! Wow. I have to say we were struggling for a while because we didn't know many people here and we really missed home at times. Though we still miss our lovely friends and family, we are really beginning to integrate into the community. It is really cool to see.
If I have learned anything from college and my student affairs experience it's to get involved. I tell my students all the time to find something they like to do and join the club. It's a great way to meet friends with similar interests. Knowing this, Eric and I applied this theory to our life in Ecuador. So far it has been a great way to meet people and to do some fun things. Here are a few of the things we started to do:
I began playing basketball with some women in the evening. It is difficult to exercise here so this was a great opportunity. I found out about the group through my host mom who used to play with them. They seem like really great women and they are good basketball players! They asked me to play with them on the city team. It is supposed to start sometime at the end of the month.
About a month or two ago I began taking guitar lessons. This has been great for my free time and to practice my Spanish a little bit. My instructor seems to really know music and has also been a great person to get to know. This also has opened up the door to getting to know his family as well. Eric enjoys hanging out with his brother (who sells flooring).
Eric and I started an English club for the community. This was really Eric's idea to meet the needs of the many requests we have gotten for English lessons. We were on two radio stations to publicize the event. It was quite embarrassing for me because I got nervous and I don't speak Spanish very well when I'm nervous! One of my English teachers actually said that he heard me on the radio and I told him how embarrassed I was. He started laughing and said that when he heard me laughing on the radio he knew I was nervous.
Eric is also supposed to start playing basketball for the city team on my host brother's team. No one has seen him play, but they seem pretty confident that he's good.
Eric has been going with one of his teacher's to a men's social club. I think it might be similar to a Rotary but seeing as I have been to neither Rotary or the club Eric goes to, I may not be the best source. From what I can tell, it's a bunch of men that get together and play cards and carom(pool without pockets).
We both try not to shut any doors of opportunity but it can be hard when all the opportunities come on the same day. It becomes more complex when you add in the go-with-the-flow culture. Many things fall through so picking a weekend activity is like playing roulette (say yes too many things and you will let someone down but if you don't say yes to enough you could be stuck in your room waiting for the phone to ring) None the less we are beginning to really love Pinas. We are meeting some really great people and I think we will have a great two years here.
Eric playing the ukulele with Claudio Jose the son of my host sister.
Me visiting a friend and fellow PCV in Arenillas
I finally ate ceviche! A typical costal seafood. I meant to take the picture before we started eating...
This was a pretty sunset from the balcony of our house. Remember the sun sets at 6ish all year round!