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Friday, May 28, 2004

So I itch. Fleas. But my baby kitten is sooo cute! I was walking in town after going to the market and it was raining and I heard this pathetic crying and it was a tiny calico kitten. I gave her some of the pastry I was eating and then picked her up and put her in my bag and took her home with me on the bus. The butcher told me that she was a male. So I named her Leonardo but called her Leo because she looks like a little lion. Turns out she's a girl. But Leo it is, which works out fine anyway, I tell people its short for Leona (and the Paraguayans can actually pronounce it)
She sleeps in my bed. Clearly not the best idea, but she insists.
I've been in Asuncion catching up with friends after a month and I miss her already. But my brother is cat-sitting.

So the wedding went well. Brief, much like the engagement. I was the maid of honor, which required alot of work. I can't imagine being a real maid of honor for a real wedding.

I think I might go see "Lost in Translation" tonight. I miss going to movies.

Oh...BIG news. I may not have to build my house after all. The owner of the fancy house called Peace Corps and said she changed her mind but we haven't worked out the details yet.

Que mas? Ummm...not much else going on.
Gonna work on putting my digital pics online today. I'll let you know.

Monday, May 24, 2004

So. Big news.
My closest friend down here, Brennan, is marrying her Peace Corps boyfriend. Wednesday. In Asuncion. They have known each other 4 months. (Hes a volunteer in our group, not a Paraguayan) How insane. She called me yesterday and was like, Jenna, you wont believe this. I thought it was a joke. But no. Me and Jeff are going to be their maid of honor and best man. Well witnesses anyway. It will be at the American Embassy. They got permission from the Peace Corps director and hes going to move to her site this weekend. How crazy. I am soo excited for them though. They are adorable. Its funny though that just 3 months ago her and I would walk to his town during training twice a week to stalk him and Jeff...

As for me, still not married, all is well. Things would be better if someone decided to mail me...

Women's Cropped Yoga Pants from oldnavy.com item # 154468
Stay comfy during the most challenging yoga poses. Soft, flowing cotton has spandex for stretch. Wide, straight legs with side vents reach mid calf, with 25-inch inseam. Elastic waist with drawstring. Old Navy logo is embroidered on left hip.
Cotton/spandex. Machine wash. Imported.
(Black preferably)

My little chicks are growing so much. Diego is much bigger than Frida and his little tail feathers are soo cute. Our piglet is now afraid of me because I like to chase it and pick it up. It squels and tries to run away.

Mailed a long letter to Mom and she will forward it to all of you soon.

Construction on my house begins next week. Im going to be very poor. Im going to try my hardest to not touch my savings account back home until I go to Argentina for vacation. But building the house is going to eat all my May and June salary.


My phone still is being obnoxious. I am going to try to exchange it for an older model in Asuncion this week. This is what I get for buying a more expensive phone. But you guys can call me Wednesday, Thursday or Friday 011 595 981 532 421 If I dont answer, I may be at a wedding in an American Embassy for two people who have known each other 4 months. So call back later.

Low on news.
Chau.

Wednesday, May 19, 2004

You´ll all be relieved to hear that my chick is doing better (Diego) he´s not limping much and his tail feathers are starting to come in too! Frida has fewer feathers but her wings are growing pretty fast too.

My house begins construction soon. I´m super excited...I get a modern bathroom! Its gonna drain my next couple paychecks so I´m going to have to be careful about going into Asuncion and spending the night with my friends and drinking. I want to buy a refrigerator also eventually which will run me about $150 USD which is a month´s pay...vamos a ver.

Spent the night last night in a convent. Yup. Me and my friend Krista (who lives super close to me) met 2 volunteers of another organization. They work with nuns and live next door to the convent so Krista and I slept in an empty convent room. It was a little weird.

You can CALL ME now. 011 595 981 532 421.
But it only works in cities (need an antenna for my house or something...) But I´ll be in Asuncion next Thursday afternoon-Friday-Saturday morning(trying not to spend too much money...but my mental health requires American time) You can call me sometime then...I don´t know how expensive it is...but just call and say hi!

Talk to you soon I hope!
Love, Jenna

Monday, May 17, 2004

So Im building my house. Yep, didnt get the fancy house. But Im not that upset about it. I start construction next week. Its gonna be 2 rooms, the bedroom and a room for a "kitchen" Ill also have a little porch with an overhang AND the BEST part is I will have a MODERN BATHROOM (mas o menos) it will be indoor with a TOILET. Can you tell how excited I am...

All is well...except one of my chickens broke his leg. Hes limping now. I hope it heals alright.

Monday, May 10, 2004

So I made it so you guys can post comments on my blog for me to read now!
So have you ever been standing somewhere and thought, "wow, if I tripped, just a little, right now, I would die."
Yes, I went rock climbing yesterday. And I am sore. Rock climbing. Thank GOD I wore my Merrell's and not flip flops as I had planned (I didn't realize my day would be so intense) Thank you Angela for the shoes..they saved my life. The scenery was gorgeous though. And I only have one scraped hand, two holes in my jeans, a bruise on my wrist, two blisters on my feet and a couples scratches on my legs.

Have you ever taken an outdoor cold shower in the fall or winter? I am in Asuncion today solely to shower at the Peace Corps office in scalding hot water. It is so hard to get wet when its that cold.

I have two baby chicks! I named them Peep and Chirp. They are so adorable and I refuse to ever eat them. We think one's a chicken and one is a rooster but can't really tell yet.

I should find out this week about my house. If the owner says no, I'm building a little house on the property of the family I live with right now.

My phone now works (when I have reception) and you can text message me FREE online at www.telecel.com.py Jill did it successfully so you can too...just translate the page to English at www.yahoo.com and send me happy messages every single day for the next two years!

I am SO excited that the new Harry Potter movie is coming out in June! I hope that it comes out immediately here (and in English, not dubbed) If it does I think I might take my little sister here to see it, she's never been to a movie before.

I have two packages to go pick up! So excited! One is from Granny, the other from my Mom I think.

Text message me!
Love, Jenna

Friday, May 07, 2004

So I'm having phone problems. Apparently cells suck in Paraguay as well.
Dont leave voice mail, I dont have voice mail. Just text messages.
I think you can text me at telecel.com.py but its all in Spanish so you have to figure out how...

Will update more soon!

Saturday, May 01, 2004

So I dont know whats up with the phone...maybe I have the wrong country code stuff...
My actual number is 0981 532 421 (call the operator and tell them you are calling a cell phone in Paraguay and they should put you through)

So Im in Piribebuy, Ive been at my site for 4 days now. Heres a little insight:
Imagine you have no TV, no shopping malls, no air conditioning, no movie theaters, no restaurants, no phone, no car, no computer, and no hot water.
Imagine how much time you would spend with your family staring at each other. Now imagine they dont speak English.
Welcome to my life.

Im having alot of fun though...I thought Id share a few antecdotes...
-So chickens sleep in trees. Did anyone know that? I definitely did not. In fact, my family built a ladder out of tree branches for them to climb up.
-If you live in Paraguay, you can blame anything on the Viento Sur (South Wind) no seriously, Ive met people allergic to the South Wind, Ive seen skin rashes blamed on the South Wind...Ive decided to start telling people that Im allergic to the North Star.
-If I dont want to eat all the damn meat they serve me every meal I feed it to the baby pig under the table. Yes, the baby pig, he likes to sit on my feet while Im at the table. I figure I might as well take advantage of the situation.
-Ive had a couple scary snake sightings. The volunteer I replaced warned me that one almost struck him once. It hissed and stood up on its tail.
-I spent the day before yesterday picking butter beans and then shucking them for dinner.
-Yesterday I helped remove the dry corn kernels from the cobs to make chicken feed. I have a blister on my right thumb now.
-I nearly died laughing. I was sitting in the (outdoor) kitchen watching the baby pig eat and the chickens kept trying to take his food. So I grabbed a broom and started guarding the baby pig as he ate. I attacked the damn chickens with a broom. This is my life. My host mom came running to figure out why I was laughing hysterically.
-I helped trim the bushes in our yard with a steak knife. Talk about efficient. I managed not to cut my hand off though.
-Im working on teaching one of our dogs (the cute, young one) to sit. In Spanish of course. The fam thinks Im nuts.
-The parrot bit me. But we are friends now. He used to squawk like crazy whenever I walked by but now hes used to me.
-The baby pig sleeps on top of the dogs. Its really cute. The dogs are dealing with it.
-I have a toad that enjoys sleeping next to my bed.
-My pillow is made of a piece of fabric sewed around old pairs of pants. It is the least comfortable thing ever.
-When Im hungry, I go to one of the orange trees and pick my snack. Its pretty cool.

Thats my life in a nutshell. Havent really done anything here yet. Ive slept alot. Im gonna start trying to meet people this week. Its getting COLD. And yes, cold means like 50. But still it feels COLD. I might actually stop wearing the flops soon. Maybe.

Still dont know about the fancy house. But I stare at it longingly every day. I love my family but I cant wait for my own space. And less meat in my diet.

Chau for now.

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