some have been curious about what my typical day looks like. this is not an easy thing to describe, as Peace Corps Nicaragua often does not include typical days...
i shall try...in brief.
Around 4 AM I wake up with the roosters, which often sleep on the other side of the wood plank wall of my bedroom (quite close to my head). I sleep again.
Around 6:30 AM I wake up to the sound of Doña Leonarda patting out the day´s corn tortillas by hand...into perfect circles. Pah, pah, pah. PAUSE. -she shuffles over to the wood burning stove to flip one tortilla, put another on the metal disc/skillet, and then she returns to the counter to pat out some more masa (corn dough).
After Leonarda realizes I am awake (you can hear EVERYTHING through the wood walls), she screams, ¨Miguel! ¿Ya va a comer?,¨calling me to breakfast.
I ask how the family slept and they typically reply, ¨Thank God, pretty well.¨ These conversations do actually happen almost every day.
Typically I will eat. Rice, beans, tortilla, or I will make oatmeal. Then I will do some project planning in my room and decide whether or not to bathe before the day´s agenda.
Currently I am meeting with lots of community members and discussing possible projects, challenges they face, etc. We have two community banks with meetings twice a month. We are preparing to start a third community bank! I am beginning to do some nutritious food demonstrations (this week, three Salsa Mexicana recipes using local ingredients...mas or menos). I have started a Marango tree nursery to assist with a youth chicken feed business plan and I have worked with three local youths to start family veggie gardens!
Future projects (in discussion) include a community mill (molino) and a community/church garden (beautification!!). Also, some larger scale farming ideas like organic lettuce, an onion patch, soil conservation barriers for hill side farming, and new product ideas. I love new food products (my ideas include tomato jam and pickled baby corn...already made the pickles, and they tasted GREAT).
After treking around town talking with everyone and hearing my name, ¨Miguelito!!¨yelled from all sides, I return home often to wash up before dinner (despite Nica habit of only bathing in the morning).
Some days I practice milking cows, some days I feed my worm compost with some fresh cow pooh, and some days I take a tour of someone´s patio, in which I will usually find some neat plants such as wild orchids.
At night, I eat a hearty dinner...often some rice, beans, tortilla, cabbage or fried eggs. Sometimes I will prepare some soy protein or we will have some corn on the cob. Sometimes squash (chaya) soup.
I typically end the night reading and writing about the day in my room, listening to 80s music, sipping on warm pinolillo, and trying to ignore the itching from my flea bites.
I use my head lamp to get around at night, brushing my teeth and such. Around 9 I get in bed and read by head lamp until I decide to fall asleep...