Last Friday was a great day that had a little bit of everything that makes me happy… so I thought I´d post about it!

Woke up at 7 am, got ready, breakfast served by my host mom (rice and beans, avocado, coffee, tortilla, pastry). Walked 15 minutes to health center, greeting a few people along the way. Arrive at health center, get the go-ahead to give a charla on nutrition. Greet everyone waiting to see doctors and nurses (about 25 people in the waiting room) and proceed to give a 20 minute charla on the importance of good nutrition. Used three of different posterboards as visual aids: various benefits of good nutrition, its importance during pregnancy, and one on the food pyramid (some very nice food drawing I must admit). Lots of questions from the patients, various compliments from people saying they enjoyed it. Nurses told me good job. Success.

Left with my nurse counterpart and another nursing student to a nearby barrio, attempting to track down a pregnant mother who missed her day to come in to the health center. Didn´t end up finding her (she lives in another barrio) but learned a lot. We went house to house for a few hours, talking with people, updating health forms of who lives in each house and some demographic information. Talked with various people about their health problems and what they can do about them. Ignored whistling from ten construction workers and a few catcalls (ugh). Stopped at local produce stand to buy vegetables (carrots, avocados, cucumber, tomatoes). Home at noon for lunch (rice, beans, cheese and tortilla) plus a little salad I made with some of the veggies I picked up.

Relaxing afternoon at the house (didn´t have to return to the health center in the afternoon). Sat in a hammock for three hours with my current book of the moment: a story of a family in Kashmir as they deal with the ongoing conflict in the region. Finished book. Next on the list: Tom Sawyer. Ate three mangos. Delicious. Fried tortilla chips and made guacamole with fresh ingredients. More deliciousness. Talked with host mom. Refreshing outdoor shower under the sun to cool off and get ready for night ahead.

One of my most exciting moments since being in Condega: a teacher from one of the local high schools came to my house to ask me to teach a lesson on sexual health to her class. She went to a Ministry of Education meeting, the topic of sexual health came up, and people had heard there was this new volunteer in town who is working on this issue. (People know me! how exciting). So she went to the health center, then next to my house to find me, and we planned a lesson. Hooray! I´m teaching the class this week.

15 minute walk to another barrio. Met up with nurse counterpart, had our first official youth club meeting (I´m helping start two new youth clubs in town). Some 20 teens from 11-18 showed up. We did some fun activities (a name game, the human knot, sang some funny songs) and got to know what health issues interest them (self-esteem, puberty, sexual health, HIV). Planned our next meeting in a month. Everyone´s excited.

Walked to the house of a German volunteer living in Condega to celebrate her birthday. First time being invited anywhere past 6 pm… ha. Had cake and ice cream. Beautiful night chatting with some new Nica friends in an outdoor table under the stars. Met up with some of the other German volunteers in town and recognized a few of my own new Nicaraguan friends. Happy I´m starting to recognize people, and they recognize me.

Got home and went to sleep, content with my day 🙂

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