Yesterday I moved in with my host family in Ojo de Agua, part of a small town called Vuelta de Jorco about 25 kilometers from the center of San Jose. We're up in the mountains and the weather is perfect with not a mosquito in sight. On Monday I start Spanish classes with the five other volunteers who are training in the same town. I'm about a kilometer up from the center of town, but the walk downhill is great--check out the view from my house!
On Tuesdays we'll take the bus about 5 kilometers to meet up with the other Community Economic Development volunteers, and on Thursdays we'll take the bus all the way to San Jose to get together with the whole group. I'll be here for 11 weeks, although that includes a few trips to visit volunteers in other parts of the country. Although I love the other volunteers, it's nice to switch to a more peaceful lifestyle. I'm living with a grandmother and great-grandmother, and their children and grandchildren are always around, but we go to sleep early, get up early, and there's time to write letters or go for a walk. At least, the weekends are nice and peaceful. Things may change when the classes and homework build up!
I've attached a picture from the orientation retreat with a number of other volunteers in the classroom just so you can get a rough idea of the group.
A note for those of you writing letters: I only get mail through Peace Corps on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and I don't think there's anywhere to mail a letter without walking a few kilometers, so we'll all have to be patient.
We'll see if I can make it to an internet cafe this afternoon. In a moment I'm leaving with Josue--my host mom's grandson who is nine years old--to walk up the mountain a bit and explore a coffee plantation.