So, today was my first mass back, and I got to stand up with the Melia Family Foundation folks and introduce myself to everyone (as if they didn't know by now). "Hola. Me llamo Annalisa. Soy de Michigan en los Estados Unidos. Tengo 25 anos. Voy a estar aqui cada semana." (*hint hint nudge nudge* "I'm not standing up and introducing myself next Sunday too.") It was also Colocho's (Christian Josue's) 15th birthday today.
After church, we piled into one bus and two micro-buses (think "full-sized van") and drove clear across Guatemala City to take the boys (and some local girls) to a scout camp. On the way, I talked to Mike Melia about their trip to Antigua tomorrow. He wasn't sure where they were going to stay for the night; so I suggested the Candelaria.
When we got to the camp, we split up among the two activities: the challenge course and the swimming pool. (My swimsuit is something I will need to have sent to me, I think.) I went with the medianos since they seem to like me just fine, and they and the grandes set off to the challenge course while the girls and the peques went swimming.
Note about the home: They divide the boys into three groups for sleeping, eating, and just about everything else. These groups are by age. I am not entirely sure where the ages fall at this point, but I think ages 2-7 are the "Peques" (short for "pequenos"--with a tilde over that n--which means "little ones"), ages 8-12 are the "Medianos" or "the middle-age kids", and 13 to 16 are the "Grandes" or "big kids." I may have some of those ages off by a little bit, but at least now you will understand a bit more of my lingo.
I wandered along the challenge course trail and partook of a few of the challenges myself. (I completed three as they were supposed to be done, and I jokingly did 3 or 4 others, climbing between slats instead of over the top or some other ridiculous variation.) I am not sure how far through we were, but we had a boy who just wouldn't come down off of one of the challenges. After the fact, we were pretty sure he just wanted attention, but at the same time, we couldn't just leave him there without supervision. So, it ended up being 3 of the university students and myself waiting for this boy for a half an hour to come down from this tree. And don't think we didn't go up and try to help him down either. Our patience was wearing thin, and I actually started singing the Zaqueo song (a song about the Biblical man Zaccheus who climbed up into a tree to see Jesus pass by). Anyway, we were eventually the last ones on the trail, and before long we got lost (obviously after getting the boy down). So, we just started following a road around until we got to the swimming pool, and from there we went up and got our lunch.
After lunch, we headed down to the swimming pool where I was constantly bugged to go swimming. They didn't care that I didn't have my swimsuit or even a dry change of clothes there. However, I finally noticed on the rule board that you need to have a swimsuit to go swimming. While the university guys could argue that they didn't care about my protests, they really couldn't argue about the pool rules. So, I mostly just sat around and took pictures of the kids, timed them as they swam across the pool, and was a generally pleasant audience.
When we got back, I finally started downloading stuff off of my camera. I have 4 memory chips for it, but unsurprisingly, I left the other 3 at home. Not really something I "forgot" as I didn't even have it on my list or in my mind. So, I needed to clear space on this one. And while I was at it, I posted some pictures on Facebook. In time, I'll look into cross-posting them here, but I have to say that I'm a little drained after today. I'm off to brush my teeth and find something warm to wear to bed.
Tomorrow, Daniel (one of the teachers at the home) and I are going to drive the rest of the Melia Family Foundation group into Antigua. He needs to stop in at the university there, and I want to shop at La Bodegona (I think I have the name right). I want to pick up a few general housekeeping things such as my own set of silverware (if you're late to dinner, you may get to try to eat your meat with a plastic spoon!) and a set of nail clippers (which was on my packing list...oops) and, of course, a couple cans of limon Pringles. (Sure, they MAKE them in the States, but they refuse to distribute them there. So, I have to come all the way here to buy American yumminess.)