Thursday, July 07, 2005

FBT and Gracias

I know it´s been awhile and a few of you needed to communicate with me, but I had a good reason I swear.

Last Sunday our training group split into the two individual projects (Protected Areas Management and Business) and went out to our Field Based Training sites. We´re going to be living here for four weeks and concentrating on spanish and tech training, with cultural stuff mixed into those two subjects rather than getting its own classes.

The town is Gracias, Lempira, which is one of the oldest and nicest colonial towns in Honduras. Plus it sits right at the foot of Celaque National Park, the highest place in the country. So far it´s safe to say I like it a lot. The people are very chill here, and they´re more used to gringos because it´s more of a tourist town. Feels more religious than Sigua too, and there´s less to do at night but it´s much safer - I never ever feel like I have to take a taxi (and most of the time it´s not really an option anyway). There´s a lot of really nice fancy churches left over from colonial times, and even a big white castle that sits on top of a hill in the middle of town. Very cool. Climate is a little hotter than Sigua, but drier. Less biting insects is welcome.

As you might imagine, I´m staying with a new host family and that is going fine. The mom Jacqueline stays at home and runs a pulperia, the father Edwin runs some kind of cable TV business in another town but he´s around a lot, and there are two kids (6 and 7 years old, Edwin and Manuel respectively). I think their economic class is more or less the same as the family I stayed with before. They´re friendly people and good company. Religious, just like everyone else, but Edwin has a more interesting perspective... he says he had many vicios (drinking and smoking pot) that he gave up 8 years ago. He likes fishing, cars, and some american music that is actually good such as The Doors, Pink Floyd, and even some Metallica. :D The stuff from America that they listen to in Sigua makes me want to cry. They took me to some hot springs near town the first night too, which absolutely rocked. I had not felt hot water since I´ve been here. They are called the Aguas Termales, but Edwin told me the people refer to it as the ¨aguas maternales¨ because of the propensity of couples that like to go there.

In our tech training here so far we´ve worked for a fair amount of time on Intergrated Pest Management - different prevention methods, and the making of natural pesticides. Yesterday and today we did extension methods (ways of meeting and starting a working relationship with the community) and improved cookstoves. Got to make adobe, which of course involves playing with mud. That was fun.

There´s been a lot of other great little stories during the interim, but I really don´t have time to recall or tell them all. I´m in good spirits generally, although spanish has been frustrating lately. I had my second spanish interview and they put me back in Intermediate Medium but with a + sign for ¨strong¨ which basically means I haven´t learned anything but I speak with more confidence than before. I know that´s not true. Ah well. I miss the business half of our group too, now I don´t have anyone to be geeky around.

Dad wanted the phone number for the PC main office in Tegucigalpa, so here that is: 232-1753/231-1993. That´s what I have on the card they gave me; I don´t know why there´s two numbers.

More Hondureñisms to come in the next edition, if you guys want... I´ve found some more good ones. :)

As usual, hope you all are well and whatnot. Love from the tropics!

El Boog


At 5:11 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hay un telefono en la casa?

At 12:24 PM, Blogger Dave/SugarBear said...

Thanks for keeping this updated Gabe! I loved the first round of Honduranisms and look forward to the next batch! My wife actually liked being called a strawberry =)

At 4:55 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I watched the video that made you a geologist the other day gabriel...with Cousin meta, Uncle iggie, and sad sadie...and who can forget rocko...I miss you a lot lately and I'm glad you started posting again, I want to call you, so what's the new number? LOVE LOVE LOVE Maya

At 5:02 PM, Blogger pineconeboy said...

Mom and Maya - I´ll get that number for ya, next time.

Dave - You really seem to be enjoying reading this, which makes me happy... I assumed only my family members would care. :) How´s things in Portland? Has pdX had a get together lately?

ps, my instructors messed up on my spanish evaluation. I´m Intermediate High+, wooo. =)

At 7:43 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

¿Y el numero de la casa?
Tu mama.

At 8:38 AM, Anonymous Grandpa Hensold, said...

Gabe, Grandma and I are enjoying your blogs. So is Nancy. The first series of telefono numeros means " Honduras" and we have to use it to get into the country's telephone system.


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