Monday, November 29, 2010

Odds and Ends

Casa Pastoral now has a certificate of appreciation from the PNC. (The police!) We supported a two week long youth summer school program. Today was the ‘graduation.’

Think it’ll help if I carry that with me and get stopped by the police??

Prob’ly not.


We had a meeting with 22 high school students who will be getting a Pastoral House scholarship next year. Last year we had 7. We explained the expectations of them bringing their trimester grade reports and writing a letter of gratitude to our donors … and the expectation that they will help other students or members of their community as a form of ‘pay-back’ – and we told them we have some books and a typewriter here they can use to do their work (no one has typewriters but all receive typing homework). And that if they need help in math Mauricio can help (another scholarship student willing to tutor) and I can help on occasion with English.

Smiles all around.

I took all their pictures for our file folder that has their application, grade reports and soon to be signed receipts. The first payout is in January – about a week before the school year begins.


Beans, beans and more beans. It is the staple here. That and corn (mostly for tortilla, pupusa and tamale making). Yesterday I spent a couple hours extracting the red beans from their pods. The donations from the people in Alejandría created lots of work! My fingers feel raw. Cecilia and I spent lots of quality time together doing this yesterday. We left the big bucket on the table overnight and this afternoon we had to take all the little sprouts off. Just over night the bulk of them sprouted.

They are now all bagged and in the fridge.

We do have another clump of beans still on the vine drying on the roof of the Pastoral House though.
  Up on the Pastoral House roof!

Drying beans on the sidewalks -

This man asked me why I don't come to the Alcoholic's Anonymous meetings any more.
Hmmmm.  I had to tell him I was someone's translator ... and that I was not an alcoholic. 
He seemed sad by this news.


There was a big article in the paper the other day about more exhumations of ‘clandestine’ and hidden and illegal graves. Some of them mass graves. These are bodies from the civil war. They found over 300 in one area (28 different gravesites) – about 60% of them women. They are doing this exhumation work slowly – and with experts. They said it takes two days to completely exhume a body. They want to be careful to try to preserve any micro-evidence. I am impressed that they are taking such care. And pleased. Maybe some justice will come for a few.


Big soccer game on here … Barcelona vs Madrid. It’s like New York and New York: VERY fanatic fans. We have some of the kids of the Team and a couple of their friends here watching. 5 young men are enjoying the game! Kinda fun to be able to ‘host’ something just for fun on occasion.

Whoops … cable/internet just went out!! So now NO one gets to watch the game. I wonder if ‘the whole world’ was watching the game and the cable company got over-loaded?? Bummer.

Internet came back on – 3 hours later!! So someone will have to let us know who won the game.

Oh last thing … the 3 chickens that we received from the people of Alejandría … we ate two for Thanksgiving – I actually stuffed one the way my momma used to stuff! (If you want that story you’ll have to ask for it personally because some of that story might not be appropriate for a public blog! Haha – but I did write a story of the day – complete with photos!)

And the one remaining chicken that is still tethered to the tree outside my office door (and whose job did it become to feed and water and untangle each day?? You guessed it. Me).

Well – that one remaining chicken is actually a ROOSTER. He’s young – that is my excuse for not recognizing the fact that he is not a hen. And he is just learning how to crow. And he practices at 10 p.m. and 2 a.m. and 4 a.m. … and then I think he goes to sleep at 6 a.m. when we all get up for the day.

It’s only about a half crow though. Pretty wimpy. But he’ll learn. When he gets really annoying at all those wee hours of the morning – I’ll suggest soup.

I'm sorry ... but can YOU tell the difference??

He is lonely without his companions though ...

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