28 January, 2008

Week 2

I am now completely done with 2 full weeks of training, and only 9 more to go! We met our teachers that we will be working with last week, and this week we should actually have some time to figure out what it is exactly we will be doing. There is some talk about helping some of the teachers finish a grant to get a water tank and purification system set up at the school as well so that the kids don’t have to bring a 3 liter bottle of water every Monday so that they will be able to wash their hands. We are scheduled to be in the classrooms with our first lesson at the beginning of next week, so that’s pretty cool. The closer I get to actually working the happier I will be.

My homestay family is awesome, and apparently also related to almost everyone in town. Jesse, Joey, Briana and I are basically famous, as everyone knows us and our bowel habits. Apparently I am winning because I haven’t been sick yet, knock on wood. I’m not sure if that means my mom’s cooking is safer, my stomach is tougher, or if my body is just saving up for a really knock me off of my feet sick in a few weeks. No use worrying I guess… even though there have been three dead birds around my house this week… just kidding, my host mom says the neighbor kids are shooting them with sling shots.

So about what exactly I am going to be doing here:

I will supposedly be assigned two schools to work with in the hopes that I can help the teachers develop a plan for an environmental education program. Exactly how I go about doing this, whether it is me giving talks to kids, running workshops for teachers, or just helping the principle find out how to go about getting multiple bins for trash and recyclables will depend on my site. As of right now, I think I will be taking over a site from Adam, a PC MI from the GeoHazards program at MTU who is COSing in April, so eventually I am going to get to talk to him and find out the info on the schools that he has been working with to see what I am going to be able to continue and where I am going to have to figure some new things out.

In addition to this, I will be working with CONRED and INSIVUMEH (the Guatemalan equivalents of FIMA and the USGS) to help monitor Santiaguito Volcano. Again, what this exactly entails will depend on what is going on there now and where people want things to go, but apparently the Tech group that was just down here put in some new equipment. In addition, there are supposed to be plans for a workshop sometime at the end of next year that we might have a chance to help get some things rolling on, but again, that’s all in the future.

In the meantime, I am enjoying my training community and my training group, and I am especially enjoying the chocolate covered bananas which are sold in the next town over. We pass by the place almost any time we want to go into more civilized areas, so I have been eating quite a few, and I am in fact on a first name basis with the girl who works the counter.
Thanks so much to those of you leaving comments or writing emails, I love hearing from people. I may be a little slow getting back to people just because I am only really on the internet once a week, but I promise that I will respond soon! Peace.


jcvertin said...

Hey Kyle,

sounds like you'll be providing some useful help to whatever site(s) you end up going to. I'm sure they can use someone of your intellect. Go you!

I hope you don't get sick any time soon either *knock on wood*

As a complete aside, our Intramural co-ed volleyball team played the Geologist volleyball team yesterday so I got to see all your Geo buddies that I used to see you run into at the KBC all the time.

Some kid kept yelling "Rocks explode" whenever we would hit the ball....turns out the ball usually ended up exploding in his face or some other place on the Geo side of the net. :) They coulda used your athletic skills. ;)

At least Geologists are wonderfully nice people. Take care buddy.

jcvertin said...

MTU is closed today due to crappy weather...its like -5 degrees with 40 MPH wind and blowing snow. Does this mean you get the day off too? :)

Christopher said...

Kyle! I see you are already developing intimate personal relations with the local women. Good for you! If you see any children that look like me don't be surprised, just tell them that their father loves them. ;)

We did play the geology team, and the guy that was yelling "rocks explode" was Randy. It was a good time, but unfortunately we had to crush their rocks.

Best of wishes! good luck, I wish I was in the Peace Corps...grad school sucks. :D

Kyle Brill said...

Ha Ha Ha. Thanks for the news guys. Great stuff, and no, we didn't get the day off, but it has gotten to a little below freezing up here a few times at night, but then it gets into the high 70s around noon, so we get both sides.

Its also great to hear that Randy is yelling Rocks Explode.

Miss you guys, take care.