May Highlights

It’s June already? Whoa.

May just seemed to fly by. And it was a good one. Let me fill you in.

Santa Cruz Trip

Turns out I wasn’t lying to all my friends back in Santa Cruz and really was able to make it back for feria. I went back for 3 days which, while a mere fraction of the actual 10ish day extravaganza, was perfect. I was able to see most of my friends, chat with muni colleagues and partake in some of the best feria activities. I’m starting to realize that the more people love you in a place, the less food and drink you will have to buy there. And Santa Cruz really wanted to feed me. In fact, within my first 20 minutes of being off the bus I was offered 3 meals. That’s love.

Rodeo with muni pals (including the mayor’s wife)!

I was able to play some loteria, watch the horse parade, go to a baile (dance) and even got a free ticket to the rodeo. But I think the real highlight of the weekend was this:

Look at that smile!

You might recognize Samuel from some other posts. He was one of my neighbors and was always helping me out with things and making me laugh. I found out a few months ago that Samuel had never been to the movies before and I promised him (before I knew I would have to move) that I would take him for his birthday. Luckily, his birthday was only a few days after feria, so I was able to keep my promise. We took the bus to the mall an hour and a half away and watched The Avengers in 3D. Sustainable development? No. But probably one of my favorite moments of service.

So, after my trip to Santa Cruz I took a few days of spanish classes (someday I will master you, subjunctive!), went to Panajachel for a fundraiser, met the rest of the volunteers from my new department at a regional meeting and then hopped a plane for the states.

Stateside

I know, it seems weird to go home when I’m so close to finishing my service, but my sister was graduating!

Congrats grad!

And if my parents were willing to come all the way from the Philippines, how could I miss it?! Not that it took much convincing. I love going home. Kayaking on Lake Tahoe, wine walking, BBQs, dancing, pool time, a SURPRISE PARTY!, a wedding reception and so much free food and drink (my friends in Nevada reeeeeally love me). It was perfect.

Aces! (also, JUST noticed the amazing photobomb on the bottom right…)

Congratulations Lauren and Eric!

Eventually I had to get back to Guatemala (and give my stomach a break) and Wednesday afternoon found myself back in Santa Maria wondering if it was all just a dream. Thankfully I didn’t cry this time around. And don’t feel any waterworks on the way.

The next 80 days (yes, that’s all that’s left for me!) aren’t daunting, they’re exciting. I’ve got a couple little projects I’m working on in the muni, a 4th of July party to help plan, a degree project to translate and, before you know it, I’ll have close of service meds and paperwork to deal with. I’d also really like to get a trip to Xocomil in there somewhere. And maybe I’ll try to squeeze in a little more blogging.

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