Thursday, April 20, 2006

Freakin' finally

We know where we're going to be living finally. About 1 year 4 months into the overall process and we know what we'll be doing, who we'll be working with and where we'll be living. Abby and I will be in Calapan, Mindoro. It's a larger city, I think of about 100,000 people and it's the provincial capital. It's taken a second to get readjusted to the idea of living in a city since I think most of us assumed in the Peace Corps you live in the boonies in a hut, but I'm very happy with our placement. It supposed to be a very cool city and it's really close to a lot of good beaches and scuba spots. Actually Mindoro is known for its excellent scuba spots, and that's saying a lot since the Philippines is considered one of the best dive spots in the world. I'm going to be working with the provincial government helping with eco-tourism, reef restoration, flood control and a bunch of other semi-unrelated things. It sounds pretty cool because the government works with something like 12 municipalities around the province, so I'll be doing a lot of day travel around the island to different communities and working with them to set up programs and implement them. Abby is going to be working in a high school that has both a special ed and a deaf ed class, so she's very excited about the prospect of working with deaf kids. I can't say much more at this point since I haven't looked into it at all, and I'm kind of pressed for time, but yeah, it seems like it going to be awesome. We've been in Balanga the past two days for more training, and we're heading back now. We go to visit our site next week, so that'll be our first big travel experience since we're arrived here, and it'll be great to finally see the place. Also, we went swimming in the south china sea yesterday, and it was amazing. This country rocks. And now, look at some pictures.

This is a picture of the flagellents from behind. You can see their bloody backs.

Here they are from the front. They cover their faces to make it more of a personal sacrifice and less of a public display.

Here is where we had our water safety "lesson." Life is hard here.

Here is our host father Bhoy with his grandson Paul Lee.

They had a night time procession on Holy Thursday with lots of floats.

Here is a view across the fishponds from our town. As you can see, it's very nice. But, directly behind me is a lot of trash.

We walked over this rickety bamboo bridge to get out to the water at the mangrove nursery.

This is us in a tricycle, the best and usually cheapest way to travel short distances.


David said...

Awesome pictures, thx for posting.

ma and pa in portland said...

We will call you this coming week. Thanks especially for the pics, we have been waiting to see some. Love

Anonymous said...

I’ve got to admit that I am pretty jealous. Sounds like you guys are having a blast. I miss you guys a lot and hope that you are having a ton of fun. Love Anna