Monday, August 27, 2007

O Nosso Projecto em Ribeirao Manuel

We had a trash pickup, after MUCH effort in our town this past Sunday and it went awesome!!

The group and some PC peeps limpa some lixo

Some of what we collected, we collected in total about 100 bags of trash

Me, Nat and our LCF Jeremais with some of the kids who helped. Our chant was, Nu ka kre lixo mas!
All in all, we learned alot about organizing an evetn in Cape Verde, and I know i was surprised that we actually pulled it off and it went so well.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

One more thing, Im using Flickr

If you search for people, my name is guberman313, ill be loading pictures on there, slowly, but hey, take what you can get. or as they say in Cape Verde, Se Ki Ta Da.

So long and thanks for all the cachupa

So this is most likely the last blog from Assomada as next week is the end of PST. Sure, it’s been fun, sure I’ve eaten more food in two months than I would have eaten in a normal year, and sure there were ups and downs with all the aspects of training, but am I happy to see it end? Am I? YES. While I have more than enjoyed my homestay family and the community in Ribeirao Manuel, its time for this galinha to fly the coop. So I’m off to Sao Nicolao to do something and live somewhere, none of which I know right now. All I do know is they speak a slightly different type of creole, so we can add that to the list of languages I speak poorly.

Next week is pretty much a roller coaster type weeks if weeks were classified as types of amusement park rides. For instance, I have my Portuguese test on Monday, a meeting with the Training Director on Wednesday, and then from Thursday on we all meet everyday and on Saturday we swear in as volunteers and they whisk us away to Praia and then to our sites.

We had a potential lose the beginning of this week, but they decided to stay on as they were offered a different opportunity in CV, so we are still 27 strong. Me and Nat have the columniation of a few weeks work this coming Sunday as we hope to have a trash pick up project actually come to fruition. For the past few weeks we have been trying to arrange a trash truck, trash bags, trash gloves and some money for snacks to have a trash pickup in our town for the 26th. We wrote professional Portuguese letters and everything. Then we spent every single day chasing after the people in the local Municipality to see if they would help provide us with materials. Basically, what it comes down to is it seems the average work day is like this:

Wake up around 8.
Think about going to work around 9
Go to work at 10
Go to lunch at 12.
Don’t come back from lunch for the day

So, its sorta hard to try to schedule things and arrange things when people are never, ever at work when you go to speak with them. But alas, something will be happening this Sunday and we have even heard a crazy rumor there might be a television camera.

Anywho, oh, a word again on mail, Ill have anew address soon, so hold out on sending those weights and/or elephant babies until then. Also, if you happen to be sending anything worth anything, try not to say that on the customs slip.

Hmmm, I suppose I haven’t really given much new information about life here or whats going on, but I’m not really sure what to say about it. So if you want to know something specific, let me k now. If you prefer to simply here me stutter and ramble, then just read these writings.

So until Sao Nicolao, ate logo.

PS: As of yesterday I leanred i have some matilda on nha corpo.

Monday, August 20, 2007

And the winner is... Sao Nicolau. Ill be leaving on September 3rd and do not know exactly yet where our house will be, but we think either in or right outside the park, Monte Gordo. It will be me and Nathan together working for the park, again, we dont know in what capacity it will be. But, thats all for now, a quickie, more before the end of PST.


Friday, August 10, 2007

Tigers are not deers

I suppose I should squash all those rumors going around that I am paralyzed, because I am not. Though I had some pretty good plans for what I’d do with a nice battery powered wheel chair, alas, I can walk. I had some tingling there for a while, but I think I have narrowed it down to the extreme excess of azeite, oil, I have been eating everyday. So I took a bit of a fast, or the best way I could describe it in Creole was similar to Ramadan. Either way, my body is feeling better than it was. Food in general here is much different in regards to the food pyramid and what they value here. Me and Nathan (the other EE trainee) made tortillas from scratch. Beans, rice and this tomato/onion/garlic/pepper mixture for our families last Sunday night. It rocked beyond belief, but lo, it didn’t have the key ingredient that Cape Verdeans hold so dear: lots and lots of salt and oil. So while they pretended to like it “Mmmm, sabe” we know they didn’t. At least we ate a pretty good meal.

In other news our site assignments have been pushed back to week seven, so I still have no firm idea of where I’ll be heading for the next two years, though its been hinted that itll be sao nicaolo.

So what else has been going on here? Well, last weekend we hiked to Ribearo de Barco and it poured on our way there. As this island is very dry, the slightest bit of rain causes havoc, so we could hear and see large rocks crashing down from the cliffs. And we got pretty wet, but they LOVE rain here as they get so little of it. The people here get inot a very festive mood, they sing and yell and splash around and will swim in almost anything that contains even the smallest amount of water. Even water tanks with lots of dead frogs. And then they throw the frogs at each other. But that’s another story.

Me and Nathan have been learning about the environmental outlook of CV, what has been going on, what problems there are and what they would like to do in the future. For instance, in Assamado, they have had a trash collection for many years. However, since they only have two trash trucks which break down often, trash still gets littered all over and when a trash bin isn’t collected, its sometimes turned over…for some reason. Another issues, one of the biggest, is the lack of water and the quality of water. They have a dam here that is meant to trap rain water for irrigation use. The one flaw is this dam now stops water from going down stream to other farms. So while they have built the dam, they haven’t finished the pipes which will carry the water further down. Outside of Santiago, trash is not as prevalent in the flora as it is here, possibly because there are a lot of people on Santiago. They are thinking of building an incinerator and suing the burning trash to power a desalination plant. Oh, water.. Most of the potable water comes from wells which collect in tanks and is then distributed to surrounding zones. However, because these wells are drawn upon daily, they have begun to draw water in from the sea which salinates the water and renders that well useless. Outside of the “urban” areas, some people collect rain water in cisterns or on their roofs, others buy it from a truck, and many have to go to cheferiz’s to collect water from public wells.

Our second ET occurred last week,. So we are now a group of 27, but as always, everyone’s spirits seem to be high, and as I can speak only for myself, all seems good and all are ready to be done with PST and get to our sites. If not only to start our service, but to get some semblance of our own lives back, being able to cook, have your own space, etc. Hmmm, oh, took a test on porteguese last week….i need to study more. Creole isn’t too bad, I can get by fine, but as we all know and agree, porteguese is much more difficult..

I suppose that’s all for now. Oh, mail. Thank you to everyone who has sent mail as it rocks to get mail. If you happen to be planning on sending me any books or large chemistry kits or harmonicas or other things, it might be best to wait until I get to site. Taking what I already have with me on a plane in this country is a task. The less I am dragging alongside me the better, I already have two bags, a large water filter, and once we swear in, we get a large, yellow peace corp issue life jacket. So don’t send me a life jacket either. Any mail you send me now will still get to me, they will send me mail to my site if it arrives after I swear in. so, hope all are well and as always, questions questions questions. If it’s a good one,. Email it to me and not in a comment, I don’t check those comments too often.

N ta fala ku nos mas tarde, e n kre un dia nos bem ali. Kuando nos bem, n ta odja todo ilhas para bu. Ti logo,. Txeu..

The picture is a view from my house