Tuesday, 27 December 2011

A crazy last couple of weeks before travelling

We've been so busy in these last two weeks it's been crazy. The boys broke up from school for their summer hollidays and since then we've been working from roughly 7am till 8pm. It's been really nice to have more of a lie in but I've definately been missing our breaks! Works had a different feel though because they haven't had to do homework, go to school etc so it's been a lot more chilled out which is nice. I've had a lot more time to just spend with the boys playing with them, which sometimes we don't get much time to do because everything is so routiney and structured normally. We've had the time to do some daft stuff like crafty things and a little puppet show. On one of the days we spent hours playing with bubbles with the boys, they loved them so much! And of course there's still been loads of visitas and actividades for the boys, which have been funny.

Most of the visitas just come in and play games with the boys and bring panetone. Always plenty of panetone! One of the visitas the other day was in San Antonio with a clown and a girl in a slutty mrs santa outfit. Ben Diez and Papa Pitufor came along as well for a bit as well! I was kneeling on the benches next to Elsa but kept falling off because it was hurting my knees and Elsa, one of the hermanas in Sonrisa, just turned round and jokingly called me a 'nina malcriada' which apparently means like crazy girl. Evie was saying they all think I'm a bit wild and a bad influence haha, oops, not the reputation I was hoping for.

Ciudad gets loads of donations from the public like toys and clothes for the boys and that kind of thing. A lot of the clothes we get are for women girls as well, which is silly because it's an all boys care home, but it means volunteers and hermanas get new clothes! Had a big lot in the other day and managed to find two pairs of jeans, a top, a jumper, jacket and pair of shoes that fit! Evie says I'm slowly turning into a Peruvian and starting to look like one now and if I didn't have blonde hair I'd almost fit in haha.

The other day we went to Parque de las Aguas with the first second and third place acts from Noche de Talentos and other volunteers! The fountains were really beautiful and there was a light show thing which was stunning. Hands down highlight though was jumping and running through the fountains! It was really nice to spend some time with the older boys as well because they're all so nice and funny. Normally we don't really see any of the boys except the ones in our pabellons. We were just running about playing tig, pushing the boys and other volunteers into the fountains and generally bein daft. Although I managed to bulldoze Paul from Nino Jesus over when I was running round, oops, although he found it hilarious. Also because it's summer here none of us even got too cold, even though it was about half ten at night when we left and we were all soaked. It was just a great day!

Hepetitus A seems like it's here to stay for at least a while longer, a boy in Sonrisa and in San Antonio have it now as well! Although Tania is doing much better and had her bloods back which were good, although she's had to take about 6 -8 weeks off work! It makes me feel so relieved that I got the jab before coming! Work has been crazy though because there's only two hermanas and me looking after all the boys. It's been fine because it's only temporary, but I'm definitely hoping there will be another hermana/volunteer here for next year in Nino Jesus. Who knows anyway, some people are expecting a bit change round with the hermanas next year!

We had the biggest coincidence last weekend! One of my best friends is at Cambridge and there's a guy called Joaquin staying in her halls who's from Lima! He came back to Peru for three weeks over christmas and one the one day off we've had we messaged him to see if he wanted to go out for a drink - and it was his birthday! Couldn't believe our luck! So we hopped on a bus to Barranco and went out for some anticuchos and cocktails! He was really sound, had a really good night, and it was nice to get away from Ciudad and have a night out. Also they're very few and far between because we don't get much time off!

After a good 'ol sleep through the day Alex and Aneesha, the two PT volunteers from Iquitos and our roomies from training, came to visit that weekend as well! It was really nice to talk to some of the other girls here and just hear stories of their time in Peru. They both had a look round Nino Jesus and Sonrisa then we borrowed one of them each for church and tea. I stole Alex and kind of talked her through what work was like here and showed her round. Then after we just stayed up talking in the amplitheatre about our projects, speaking spanish and life in Peru. Their project sounds really nice and a lot more relaxed! I get the impression that our project is like on the opposite end of the scale from theirs. Like sometimes ours can be so structured and routiney with not much room to do our own thing, whereas some days they were saying they don't really have anything to do. I think there's just good and bad things about each project, it'd be easy to say I wish ours was more like that or something but they all have their faults and good points.

There's this new Italian man volunteering in San Felix that's going to be here 'por siempre'. When we first met him we didn't get a good first impression - he seemed like a bit of a cocky sleeze. Well it turns out he IS a cocky sleeze! Sara, the Italian woman that we live with said to us last weekend that if he comes by again and asks to see her to tell him she's not here because he's been bothering her. The other day he told her he thinks because they're both Italian and a similar age (they're both about 40) and working at the same project they should get together. He bought her some earings, and said she was pretty but that you don't need to know someone to have sex with them. But it turns out he's been leaving flowers for one of the women in the office as well and saying similar things to her! I'm so glad he thinks me, Evie and Laura are too young to target. To be honest he's just a creep and they've spoken to Hugo who said if he carries on he'll lose his job, so we're hoping for that! The boys struggle enough as it is understanding girls without his influence.

We had Paseo the other day as well to the park just down the road with all of Nino Jesus and some of the Mums! We were just playing with the boys really and had a tutoras and mums game of volleyball! We decided to get the boys a treat for lunch so went to Rokys to get fried chicken and chips and it cost almost 350 soles for all the boys and mums! Worth every penny. Then after lunch we sent the boys off to play football together and we ended up having a right little mothers meeting. Emmerson's Mum started it off and that woman can talk. They were comparing ways of bringing up their kids - like how late to let their older kids stay out and when to stop breast feeding that kind of thing. Emmerson's Mum was giving out tips of how you can earn more money and be successful when you're selling things. Then the conversation turned to men. Again she was talking a lot and saying how you have to keep your man in line but know your place as he's the head of the household. They were all trying to set eachother up with their friends and things. It was really nice to get to know some of the Mums a bit better because I know the boys so well but sometimes feel like I don't know much about their family life.

Ok so Christmas time! Christmas was actually really lovely here. Had Christmas Eve off because the boys were just resting and sleeping ready for staying up late so watched Love Actually and did some errandy things like sewing up my clothes and getting things ready for traveling! Managed to skype my family back home as well which was really nice - and got to speak to them all together! Borrowed a dress from Laura and went up to mass at half eight. It was two hours long so I wasn't really looking forward to it, but ended up being really nice. Last year the electricity cut out on Christmas day so as a joke Hugo turned all the lights off except the fairy lights around the altar which was really pretty. Then we all headed up to the comedor for Christmas dinner. There were 'traditional' remote control shark and fish balloons in the sky which I didn't really understand, but was funny and the kids liked it. We ate some tasty but slightly questionable beef, mashed potatoes, green beans, rice, and Michael made some stuffing that went a bit wrong and no one ate. Ahh well what can you do, and ice cream for dessert! Best of all we used plastic plates and forks and stuff so we didn't have to wash up after. We sat about for a while just chatting and playing with the boys for a while, then at midnight the boys all got to open their presents! Most of it was just like clothes and shoes for next year, but some of the boys got bikes and toy cars. I think the tutoras were asked which boys had good behaviour and then those ones got the best presents. Also I didn't realise that last year Isaac's Christmas present from Ciudad was to have an operation so that he could walk properly. His legs were really bent and they paid for them to be straightened and he stayed at Ciudad over the holidays because his family couldn't care for him properly when he was in a wheelchair. Anyway, everyone went round as well and wished Feliz Navidad with a hug and a kiss, which took a while seen as there's so many boys. On Christmas morning all the boys headed back to their families for their 6 weeks holidays, and Ciudad turned into a ghost town. We had a little volunteers Christmas thing and did our secret santa, then at night we went off to Pariwana to begin our travels!

Vols on Christmas day with Hermano Hugo

Big love to you all, Moffy xxx

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