Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Week Two In Paraguay

The surroundings and people are slowly becoming more familiar as each day passes. We are easing into a “routine” of sorts, though each week we are here will probably be different to some degree. Trent discovered a grocery store that delivers when you place an order online (a big plus for us since we don't have a car!), and we even had some empanadas (a local favorite) delivered from a local chain here. 

This past week was slightly cooler (I’m still waiting for it to get cold like we’ve been told!), and a couple of evenings it was cool enough to need to wear a light jacket. This next week is supposed to be warmer again though, and I’m beginning to think we should have packed a few more short-sleeved things!

We began teaching English this week using the gospel of John and a curriculum called English Bible Talk. The ideal schedule/setup is to meet with each student for an hour twice a week, for a total of five weeks. We had four students lined up for Monday (two with me and two with Trent), but of all four students we only studied with one (one of mine). Trent rescheduled one of his to meet on Sunday afternoon instead because his student could only meet late at night due to work schedule. Then on Wednesday, none of my students showed up, but Trent’s other student showed up. I’m honestly not surprised by students not showing up, just because I’m familiar with how things go in Jamaica when you set things up (they might make/they might not). I’m hopeful that as time goes on we’ll have some students who stick with the class. We are continuing to accept students (as they request it), and I ended up having two new students yesterday (which I’ll write about in next week’s update - I’m a little behind!).

We are getting to spend a lot of quality time together, mostly as a result of our tight living quarters! We spend a lot of time together when we are at home, but it is different because we have space to spread out. I was concerned when we came that it will be difficult with the kids to have us all in one room (particularly at bedtime and nap time), but the kids have really slept well in the situation. I think the hardest thing on the kids is that there isn’t room to run in our apartment, but thankfully most days they get to go play outside on the playground. The kids have really taken to our life here well, even though they don’t have all their regular surroundings, toys, beds, friends, or language. I was never really worried about them though because they all seem pretty unaffected by change (unlike me!). One of the things the kids love about our home here is the new friend in our complex - Trooper the big black dog! I suppose she’s a guard dog for the complex, but she is very friendly if you are inside the gate (I still need to take some pictures of the place). When we first arrived she’d stay mostly in her kennel area, but now she usually sleeps right outside our front door, and is often waiting for us by our front door when we’ve been out.
Ella and Troy with Trooper.

Luke with Trooper.

Trent began taking private Spanish lessons this week. I’m not taking any at this time (with the kids it can be difficult to schedule that much time for both of us, plus Trent will be teaching in the Bible Academy soon which will also limit or schedules). I’m planning to continue on with using Rosetta Stone (which I have found to be useful to this point - I’m only partway through level 2 of 5). 

On Thursday we went out with the family who had us over the first day we were here (and who have been one of the families taking care of us!) to a recreational club where the kids could play on a nice playground, and afterwards we got pizza. At the club the kids also got to see some "real" soccer games which they really enjoyed.

On Friday Trent went with one of the brethren to pick up Gary and Sarah Fallis (from Ft. Worth area) from the airport. They will be in for a little more than a week. Gary will be teaching a short course at the Bible Academy, and Sarah is teaching the ladies on Sunday morning. Sarah’s class to the ladies was translated from English to Spanish which I found to be really informative because I could digest the Spanish in small chunks and generally knew what the Spanish was supposed to mean. Sunday evening one of the families of the congregation invited us, as well as Gary and Sarah, to this house for dinner. It was a wonderful evening of food (including guava sauce/syrup on ice cream)
 and fellowship, and the kids loved playing in their yard.

Sarah teaching the ladies class Sunday morning

Luke is healing well from his fall last week - much better than I thought he would have healed at this point. Troy managed to trip and fall twice (two separate days) scraping his nose area both times. He looks pretty pitiful, but both injuries were very minor cuts (thankfully!).
Troy's poor face.

Read more about our time in Paraguay.