Thursday, September 24, 2009


Despite eating Oreo’s for breakfast this morning and stopping at the store Chocolate Parati a little too often, I’m pretty sure I’ve lost quite a few lbs since leaving Canada, and Pete is sure he has lost something substantial too. There are a couple of reasons for this – one being that neither of us has been in a car since our taxi from the airport. We can walk to just about everything we need, which can amount to a lot in one day. Yesterday I walked for almost 2 hours in total – to and from school, to and from the swimming pool, back close to the swimming pool for walleyball (volleyball in a squash court), and then out for a beer after walleyball and back to our room. Yesterday was pretty extreme, and I am feeling the effects of it this morning, but I would say on average every day I am walking close to an hour.

Another reason is the food. We aren’t starving ourselves by any means, but with the absence of any kind of red meat in our diet and ingesting so many of their insanely tasty vegetables, everything is fitting a little looser these days!

Check this out – in the central market, there are two rows of ladies who do nothing but make fresh fruit juices – patrons pick out the type of fruit(s) they want, they are blended along with their choice of base (orange juice, milk, etc.), and voila! Pete and I each got almost two full glasses of fresh juice for just over $1 total. SOOO good!!

I am sure once we hit Chile and Argentina and park ourselves in their wine region for a couple of weeks while enjoying their famous barbeque, all of our health/weight loss progress will disappear… =)

Tuesday night we had the most tremendous dinner with some of the people in our hostel. We were invited to join in on a traditional English feast with some newcomers. Pete contributed some bruschetta, and then later we feasted on roast chicken and potatoes, leeks, cauliflower with cheese sauce, broccoli, peas and carrots – all smothered in a light gravy. Oh, and there might have been a bit of wine involved. It was by far the tastiest thing we’ve had since we got there, and was a great chance to converse with some really incredible people who have been many of the places that we are going.

Pete cooking in our wee shared kitchen.


This week in the pool has been MUCH better for me. Albert and Randi, an older Dutch couple (of course – we live in Little Hollandia!) who run the swim club, got back from their holidays this week. Things are now much more organized and they have promised that I will never be left alone in the pool again. Next week, however, we will be without the “real” instructor and another volunteer (again, a Dutch guy!) is going to join me in the pool instead so that the club can help save some money. It will be a little nerve-wracking to be on our own, but I feel much more confident that I can handle it. Now that I have been there every day for a week, the kids are used to me and even listen to what I say (sometimes). A tremendous feat…for me, anyways!

Pete isn’t having much better luck from last week. Kids aren’t showing up for their scheduled English lessons, and being in the bakery can still be pretty frustrating with the other people that speak only Spanish. Rather then just having scheduled “open-house” English classes, he’s going to create little lesson plans about specific situations (i.e. “Introductions”, or “In The Kitchen”!) and even advertise for them.

We’ve got just over 4 more weeks to go here - I really hope that this works out for him and he can get more out of this experience that so far has been pretty discouraging. Hard to believe that yesterday marked one month since we left Canada…how time flies…

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