Estamos aqui! We are here! Our group of 28 trainees made the trip from Miami to Buenos Aires, Argentina and then to Asunción, Paraguay. We arrived around 5pm on Thursday of this week. With a 9 hour flight and then a 6 hour layover, it was a long day of traveling but the group kept good spirits and had plenty of bonding opportunities including handling the huge amount of luggage 28 people pack for 27 months of service.
Now we’ve been split into two groups and are settling into what are known as our “satellite communities.” Our main training center for Paraguay is located in a town called Guarambare, which is about an hour outside the capital. That’s where we meet for certain training classes that our whole group of 28 gets at once. But many days we will just train in our satellite communities with the smaller group. Isaiah and I were assigned to a town called Ypane (pronounced uh-paw-nay) and a great host family here. We’ll live with this host family for the remaining 10 weeks of our training.
My impressions so far are very positive. The Peace Corps training center seems on top of things and the language teachers there are top notch. We’re known as G-39 since we’re the 39th group to get trained in Paraguay and everyone at the center has been very excited to welcome us since they only receive new groups to train about 3 times a year.
I’m getting antsy to get done with some of this initial orientation stuff and dive into the language classes. At the same time, however, it is exhausting to think in Spanish! I am physically tired! Discussions with the training coordinators are generally in English but any class about culture, etc. is in Spanish which takes an incredible amount of discipline to stay tuned in and working to translate everything.
I dream of the day I won’t have to translate everything or think so hard – that it will just make sense! The day will come, but a challenge for me will be having the patience to endure the getting there part.
Well, it’s the weekend and we’re planning to attend a hand ball tournament with our host family tonight. Our host granddaughter plays so it’ll be interesting to see what that’s all about. We’d love to hear how you all are doing too, so leave a comment or say hi via email!