Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Highs and Lows

My highs and lows usually come within 24 hrs. of each other. This week my low was the frustration of finding a map of the communities I will be working in. I had to go to the Municipality bldg. 3 x, not to mention I also had to go to 2 other bldgs. to get the right signature, receipt for payment, and exercise. It took almost 2 hr. to buy a map. This was after an unsuccessful meeting with literacy teachers, unsure if they can commit to helping some of our women learn to read and write. And after these frustrating experiences, Vanessa and I got completely soaked on the motorcycle with not only water balloons, but buckets of water. The joy of carnival has started!

But my high happened within 24 hrs. - I visited one of the bank presidents, Lorenza (pictured below with her kids). We chatted all morning about some of her hopes and wishes for herself and family. She has been the first woman so far to ask for a specific training: how to manage money. She says she takes her money puts it in a notebook for safe keeping, but maybe there is another way? She has pigs, but eventually would like to buy a cow so that she can sell milk. But a cow is more expensive, at least twice the price of a medium size pig. She likes to talk, share ideas and always calls me "senorita." She filled me with happiness and excitement and when we were done chatting I kinda skipped down the dirt trail to find my 'combi' (old, rusty minivan that serves as public transport). Next month when her bank meets to make their loan payment I will organize a small talk on managing money.

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