I have had an amazing second week here in Huaraz! It was sad at the beginning, since four of the volunteers left on Tuesday, which means there were only three of us until two new volunteers came over the weekend. I already can’t imagine having to leave these kids in a few months! It was so sad seeing them say goodbye to the other volunteers they had grown so close to. They all got a chance to say thank you to them and give tons of hugs on their last day at the school.
I’ve definitely been adjusting well to life in Peru! It seems so normal walking to the school every morning and afternoon, stopping in my favorite bakery for cafe con leche, and greeting all the kids by getting kisses on the cheek. On Friday, I got to help plan an activity for the first time. Usually we help the kids with their regular homework throughout the week and then play at the park, but on Fridays, they do something fun and educational instead of homework. The other volunteers and I decided to have them play pictionary, but get bonus points if they guessed the word in both Spanish and English. It actually worked really well! The kids got really into the game and were extra excited when they knew the words in English. Afterwards, we started an art activity that we will finish next week. We had kids put paper mâché over balloons and next week, we will cut them into masks and have the kids paint them like different flags of the world.
Another volunteer, Shannon, and I have really wanted to take cooking lessons so we can learn some Peruvian dishes. Turns out that one of the Peruvian volunteers named Willy is studying to be a chef now that he’s completed school and gone through Seeds of Hope! He agreed to teach us different dishes every week at the volunteer apartment, so I can’t wait to start! Also, one of the student’s moms runs a jewelry stand and agreed to give us lessons on how to make her different bracelets! So many people I’ve met have been so friendly and helpful and I can’t wait to learn even more while I’m here.
I’ve been in the volunteer apartment for the past two weeks, but this coming weekend, I plan to move into a home stay. I’m going to meet the family and everything tomorrow, so I hope that it all goes well! I’ve loved getting to know the other volunteers at the apartment, but I can’t wait to live with a Peruvian family.