The start of training has given us very long and repetitive days. I think we’re all getting used to everything, that being the packed bus rides and crazy mountain roads. If you walk to training, from where I live it’s a thirty five minute walk going up and down hills, but it’s nice Since we sit all day. I’ll have to admit the sex ed class was something different to wake you up. And no that was not a joke.
In training they have tried to prepare for what’s to come the next two years: strange men on the street thinking they can come home with us, diseases we will most likely get like dengue fever and chikungunya and people staring at us because most of them don’t see Americans everyday (we are usually thought of as tourists), which all of that and the cultural awareness is important, but I think the most important advice I have received would be from a current volunteer in St. Lucia, that is to build as many relationships as possible. That especially means in the school. We should not automatically tell our co-teachers who have being teaching in their school for years how they should teach and run their classrooms. We should wait three months while, building a relationship with them and helping out the best way we can without bossy them around in THEIR classroom. After those three months I may feel like nothing is happening and my projects are going no where, but that’s when someone said something like “you may plant the tree but you won’t be able to sit in the shade.”
After a very long week of training, we had some time off.
I guess I am attention “Beach Corps” but I can learn to accept that. Though it’s been a week and it seems longer and that we’ve learned so much about the culture, but so much more for us to assimilate to. Most people are very nice when we meet them and will answer any question they have, but bus drivers try to over charge and a lot of the time get away with it. We stand out so much so men will try to talk to us or will go out of there way to sit with us. Nothing too uncomfortable, yet. This is why relationships are so important here. Everyone knows everyone. Our host families are a big help with that. Everything seems easy for the most part in this Caribbean culture, but that’s because I am never alone. I am always with a host family member or a fellow volunteer. I have ten weeks total to prepare to live on my own in a new neighborhood. Ssooooo prayers are encouraged.
And for those of you who where thinking, “that poor Anna, not being able to see Jurassic World”, we found a theater. I have crazy eyes I was so excited.