Tuesday, October 4, 2011


Many months in now, things seem vaguer, deeper, less distinct. Also I am sick, or was very sick yesterday, and that tends to blur the edges. Work moves forward, but my motivation waxes and wanes. The internet connection here at the library has been bizarrely unpredicatable in a way that resembles my adventures with my pen drive mp3 music. It defies any pattern or logic, but al least seems to be functioning more often than not this week. But the less frequent connection to the outside world of information, the uncertainty of when the connection will even be on, the longer periods of time in site and the increasingly powerful hot weather add to my sense of disconnect from the outside world.
Which from an intergration stand point is a good thing. My language abilities suffer every time I spend a few days with Americans and my connections with my neighbors here are deepened the more I rely on them for my social interactions en vez de far away americans.
The anticipated arrival of a swift little computer in the arms of my soon-to-arrive father will reinforce my connection with the outside world once again. It will give me powerful new tools to make things happen quickly, and hopefully will motivate me to do more work in my "free time" at home in the evening. I think the timing of this is good. I`ll have had 8 months in the country without my own computer (an escape into a whole digital non-paraguayan world) to learn how this place runs and where the bottlenecks are. Now with my decent understanding of how things work here, I`ll be able to use this productivity multiplier more effectively. Or so I hope.

We had a little VAC day last sunday here in Nueva Germania. VAC stands for Volunteer Action Committee and basically means the other Peace Corps Volunteers that are located near me. There`s Leah in a village called Oratorio, about a half an hour away (by bus, at least an hour by bike), and Hannah and Marissa in San Pedro proper, a large town and the department capitol, an hour away. Leah also has a friend visiting her from home these two weeks. So they all came out and we went aswimming in the beautiful undeveloped river near my house. Paraguayans don`t swim there because the current is stronger and the water deeper than the other river, which has "balnearios" built up near where the bridge crosses. But there is a large back water above the bend without current, with the water about 5-7 feet deep. Great for swimming. The other river has only a few spots deeper than 4 feet.

And then we all came back and cooked some delicious spicy sausage and veggies. It was the first time any of them apart from Leah had seen my house, and they all said they liked it. I like it too. Its a great little size and I`ve been able to do a lot to make it feel like my own house in these 3 months that I`ve lived there. Little contraptions and such. I`ve been trying to find logical and easy to access place to store things, mostly by hanging by nails along the wall. I believe in a logical cleanliness only. What good is it to hide my things somewhere where they are difficult to get to if it only serves to keep them out of sight?

But after dinner everyone had to run to catch one of the rare and unpredictable buses heading back towards San Pedro. These buses come all the way from Asunciòn, so there is a window of an hour and a half in which they could reasonably pass. When we got to the highway we discovered that the bus had already gone by, which began a long unpleasant adventure of trying to find a sober ride to San Pedro, which is only 25 minutes away by car. We found a ride eventually with my friend prof. Evanhy and her bf, and all was well.
But I had not taken off my wet cotton shorts, and it was a cool evening. I`m not sure if that was the direct cause of my sudden sickness, which manifested itself as soon as I arrived back at my house, but I`m sure it did not help.
I was feverish yesterday, but merely congested today. But it is late in the afternoon and I must return home to eat lunch (leftover chili, homemade) before coming back here this afternoon with prof. Lyda`s 3rd grade class.

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