Okay – now for the day! It was a great one – I really enjoyed it and experienced some awesome experiences (terrible English I know! Sorry). We got to sleep in a tad bit, and then we had the choice of riding in the medical truck and doing medicine visits to a community (which would take all day), or visit a clinic, a hospital, go back to the Villa, then go to a natural cold springs. Though the 2nd option did sound appealing, I decided to go to the medical van (figured it would be the most different and not really wanting to go back to the Villa for the 3rd time)
. Five of us decided to cram in the back of the medical truck with a Nica doctor, a driver, medicines, and we had no idea what to expect. After driving on a highway-type road for about 1 hour, we turned off onto a dark road and drove for about 30 minutes. We finally reached this community, and I had no idea how they lived. We set up tables, and unloaded all of the medicines and then people started lining up to see the doctor. The kids were off school for their “teacher meeting” day, so children were running around everywhere. At first we were all just sitting there watching the doctor, so Courtney and I decided to walk around and check out the community. After we walked passed a guy with a large rifle, we weren't sure if this was the best idea or not – but we decided they were either scared of my height/braid combo, or wouldn’t hurt us because we were with the doctor! The walk around the community ended up being really cool, and one of my favorite parts of the trip so far, so I am really glad we didn’t let a gun scare us haha. I was really surprised by the smallness of the community… it consisted of a block with 2 streets. I said hola to just about everyone, then decided to actually try and talk to some people. The first woman invited us in and showed us all her pictures on the wall (which consisted of about 3 real pictures, a Pooh drawing her daughter did, then random magazine rip-outs of The Rock and other completely random people. I also noticed that they had a radio and a small television
! That was very uncommon. We went in a couple of other people’s houses, and they were all very nice. Then we went to the little “park” area in the middle where kids were playing marbles, and there were just a bunch of people sitting looking really bored. I ended up taking to a man and people around him for about 30 minutes – all in Spanish! It was awesome. I learned so much about him, others, and he learned some stuff about America. He was really nice, introduced me to his family… and all that =) The kids also said they liked baseball and football, but didn’t have a ball to play with! I couldn’t believe that not one person in the entire community (which wasn’t that large, but still)… no one had a ball! That was really sad.
We then went back to see how the doctor was doing, and she was taking her lunch break so I decided to play with the kids… our driver had brought a Frisbee so we played with that… that was fun. I also swung on the swings and talked to a group of about 8-10 year old boys who were amazed by my height and lack of Spanish. They were basically making fun of me in Spanish (talking really fast) and then cracking up – and I had no clue what they were saying and they knew it. When they weren’t doing that they were asking me how to say words in English, which was really cute. The next part was my absolute favorite and most precious moment….
. I decided to take the empty trash bag and just walk around the playground/school area which we had set up our clinic at and pick up trash. I think I picked up about 2 pieces of trash when all of a sudden a group of about 20 kids swarmed me with garbage. They were so incredibly excited and proud to be picking up this trash. All I had to do was hold the bag and walk around and the kids picked up every single piece of trash (even the small ones which I wasn’t going to get). It was so touching and they just thought it was the coolest thing.
I then did some medical stuff, and was heartbroken by the fact that most of the people that came to see the doctor received multivitamins, Advil/Tylenol, and cough syrup. They had to wait a month just to receive Tylenol or a vitamin! I take a vitamin, plus like 3 other random vitamins every single day and don’t even think about it – these people don’t even have the most basic medicine. We also gave out medicine for parasites, which they have living inside their body. Another common complaint was feet trouble. Hardly anyone wears shoes, so their feet are not in the best condition. This was an awesome and eye-opening experience. We then headed back to the house, but before we did, we stopped at one of the doctor’s friend’s house right along the road. This family was defiantly an extremely wealthy family in Chinandega
. They had farm land in their back yard, a big house with cement floors and walls, an actually flat screen TV (small of course) and a CD player [but still no air conditioning]. We sat on their porch and talked, and it was just really neat to see someone who isn’t in poverty and to see how they live. Also – they had a stove and a microwave (I think they were from like the 70’s… but STILL… that is HUGE for down here!).
We got back to the house, and Courtney and I walked around the square to try and get a bit of exercise. This was nice. We then went to dinner at the big house, had some yummy food. Played a little apples-to-apples game, and then had devotional time with everyone. This was cool and humbling. I am now about to go to sleep and might not even be able to because I am too excited! We leave here tomorrow afternoon and go back to Managua – where I get internet and possibly phone connection!!!!!!! I can’t wait!!!!!!! Good night, love you all!
Before I get to my day, I must thank Lindsey Chambers right now, because I am so thankful for my braids..even though they are very itchy. I just got out of a freezing cold shower, but only had to stay in it for 2 minutes, just long enough to wash my body. Also, (not necessarily a good thing) but they make me stand out even more than just my height alone. The sugarloaf group apparently talks about me when I am no there and just says "girl with braids" haha… lovely.