The past week has been crazy with the arrival of the new PDs (our replacements…), the ending of our last quarter of classes, and lots and lots of transition work. The new PDs spent their first week living in Quito with host families, getting to know the city and taking intensive one-on-one Spanish classes. On Friday we moved them into the valley, where they will spend one more week living with families and studying Spanish at the library. This is the first time we have done home-stays in the valley, and we are thrilled with how things are going. We had several really great families volunteer to host and the new group is one step ahead by already making bonds and connections with community members. A few of them got to attend a wedding this weekend, and they are already making their presence known in Rumiloma.
Another great thing about having them here in the valley is that they are already seeing programs first-hand and taking part in our end of the quarter events. We held our last Adult English party at the Manna house on Saturday after the final exams. This was awesome because the new PDs were able to meet our students and friends, which will make the start to next quarter much less awkward. It will also hopefully ensure that more students come back, since they have already met their new profes. We made each of the new PDs stand up and introduce themselves, an uncomfortable experience for those who still aren’t confident with their Spanish. It was funny because I remember being forced to do the same thing last year, and it is amazing how far we all have come. Our students were appreciative and welcoming, several standing up to give speeches themselves to thank us for everything, and to make the new profes feel at home.
Meeting the new group has brought up a lot of new emotions for me. It makes our leaving a reality, reminds me how fast time goes by, and makes me a little jealous that they still have this whole experience ahead of them. I’m really glad we have these few weeks together to get to know them, share our experiences, introduce them to our community, and impart our wisdom. Their enthusiasm and eagerness is encouraging, we are all excited to see where they’ll take Manna this year.
Our neighbor Cesar welcoming Jenni
Hanging out with English students
Pete introducing himself to our students
Finally learning how to use our Sambos
Some of the new girls, enjoying dulce de sambo
Pete and Cesar- fast friends