January 26, 2008
we went to barracas, peru today on our day off. i saw sea lions, penguins, birds, and pelicans! then we went to the beach.
a good day indeed!
January 24, 2008
what we've been doing
some days it's hard. some days it's great. other days it just is.... kinda like life right?
some highlights from my week:
--i've had to battle the "traveler's bug" like so many here. thankfully my stomach has been kind to me these past days!
--i'm getting used to being with a large group of people... [usually it takes a bit of time to feel comfortable]
--last weekend was awesome we went SANDBOARDING!... think of snowboarding, but on huge sand dunes for only $10! my camera died... hopefully i can get some pics from others in the next few days.
--there have been other people from the united states that have come to help in the chincha community too... it was an awesome surprise on sunday to see so many people from the US here.
--and this week i feel liked i've been lead to help with tarps.
we have had a little extra money from the peru earthquake fund that people have donated to AIM. i'm not gonna lie - it's overwhelming because so many people need help and supplies are low, but it's the one-on-one relationships that go the distance. so me, matt, robby, & kelton have been going around in the refugee camp and helping some of the families that we have already have established relationships with.
one of the families we have been helping is mateo's family. we noticed once we first arrived that their tarp situation was really bad. (i wish i had a before picture of what it looked like)
this is where mateo's family's house used to be. you can see it was a pretty large home that was destroyed by the quake.
in front of all of the fallen adobe brick is where they have made their temporary home with tarp.
after taking off the old tarp we realized that all the beams that were holding it up were rotten. some of the guys went to the lumber store and bought some bamboo to replace the beams.
even though we didn't have translators that day... we did really well (or i should say the guys) did really well speaking spanish and communicating - praise the lord!
now if the Peruvian people offer you food... and even if you aren't really hungry or know what it is... it's a give in - you can't say no and all you can do is hope and pray that it is "safe" and doesn't make you sick. here we are enjoying our the food that they prepared for us.
earlier in the day they were telling me that if their father does not work for that day they cannot afford food and yet they feed us. they barely have ANYTHING and their generosity is so great.
it was a full day. we finished the house yet it may be only a temporary fix we are definitely going to still be working with this family until we leave. next week i will ask for donations of supplies to help this community out. i've drafted a letter together and will go to companies in lima to see if they can help out... you know just going back to my jenefit roots. (haha!)
that's all for now, but there is so much more to write about what has happened to mateo's family... i will have to continue this in my next blog.
January 17, 2008
my living conditions.
here's a glimpse of my living conditions right now... i used my computer to film it since i was slightly lazy to get the nice camera out to film. i hope you enjoy the short, but sweet clip!
thanks guys for letting me use your music.
January 13, 2008
Tambo De Mora
So this week we have started working in Tambo De Mora a fishing town that has been obliterated by the earthquake.
I don't even know if I can put it into to words how much destruction has been done to this town and how many of the people have been effected by it. Families are living in temporary housing units with no roofs... kinda like shanty towns. Living in horrible conditions with barely any toilets and food. Lets picture a city similar to any of the beach towns in Cali or maybe even perhaps in Florida. A very good prosperous community devastated by the earthquake.
[If you look to the right of the door you can see the information written on the house... this is what is what is on all of the houses in Tambo De Mora. It names the name of the family and if any members were lost in the quake.]
When we were touring the town for the first time a family showed us a video that happened right after the quake occurred.
Many families are also living in tents full time.
Before the earthquake happened black water started coming up through the ground.
On the night of the earthquake 600 prisoners escaped from the jail and helped save some of the families.
I am hoping and praying that we can make a difference while we may only be here a short while.
January 8, 2008
first part of peru...
my flight left at 645am saturday morning.... i'm not bad at organizing stuff for other people, but if it comes to me USUALLY i do admit - i procrastinate.
so shopping happened at midnight.... packing began around hmmmm 2am? i finally finished oh you know about 530am.
hahahaha. it was a rush to the airport, but it worked out. i said goodbye to mom. dad drove me to the airport. steph and denielle met me at the airport to wish me off, which was so awesome! [....i have a pic, but promised not to post it.] carolyn finished one awesome skirt for me to bring.
i ran to my gate...just made the flight!
i slept as much as i could... got to fort lauderdale around noon..
picked up my bags and found another fellow teammate in the terminal.
it was apparent that i overpacked......
our flight left at 445pm on spirit airlines.... it was about a 6 hour trip. i was exhausted and slept as much as i could, but at the same time picked up a cold, which i wasn't so stoked about because it thus took my energy the next couple days.
we finally arrived at our hostel about 2am... got to sleep around 3am. had to be packed up by 8am so we could have our breakfast and start the "race" part of the trip.
at the beginning of each month when we enter a country our hosts put together a scavenger hunt and/or challenge to explore the city/country we are in.
so we all have teams and pretty much "race" against each other.
it was a packed day!
we started off exploring different parts of the city.... a statue, a church, the plaza with a horse carriage.
we got to eat of authentic peruvian food...
and even cebiche.... which half of my team didn't like at all. we were supposed to clear our plate. all seafood... pretty much boiled/raw with some sort of lemon mixture on it. SO GOOD. i loved it.
we all decided since it was our last good meal for a while to indulge in the buffet. it was AMAZING... awesome soup, authentic food.... just such good stuff. i think most of the teams decided to take it slow and enjoy our time in lima and enjoy the lunch.
after that it was a race for about 2 hour a small town where we were supposed to go white water rafting.... we didn't make it in time because it was almost 6pm and the sun was setting. we are determined to go back if we ever have an off time.
ok, ok, ok... now you are saying JEN we paid money for you to do THIS?! trust me days like this are far and few between. i don't know if i will get to my blog tonight about our first day in Tambo De Mora.... a fishing town that was obliterated by the earthquake....
January 7, 2008
we made it to peru! stayed in a hostel last night in lima.... woke up at the break of dawn this morning. toured lima on foot....took many buses/taxis.
so much more to say...
now we are at our spot chincha about 3 hours south of lima where we will start working tomorrow. better blogs to come!