Day 12

Today we returned to Escuela La Union to finish setting up the computer lab. We woke up around 7 and squeezed into the bus to have breakfast at the school. After breakfast, we went to the lab. Steven gave us directions for imaging the desktops, which were completely in Spanish and (as a surprise) fitted with Windows 7, so we had no written directions to help us image. With the help of Sharette’s excellent translating skills, however, we managed to finish imaging. Several Microsoft Paint masterpieces were created during down-time. We then took a lunch break—the chicken and garbanzo beans were a big hit. Networking (setting up internet) was the second portion of setting up the lab. Many of us crimped wires for the first time: orange-white, orange, green-white, blue, blue-white, green, brown-white, brown. With everyone working, it didn’t take too long to get a crimped wire connecting each computer to the router.

The afternoon excursion was supposed to be to a pineapple plantation/factory, but the sun started beating down around midday, and the chaperones found a pool for us to go to instead. The pineapple plant would have been extremely hot in the midday sun, and a lot of people with earrings wouldn’t have been able to go. We were driven to a pool near the cabinas, and after a few minutes of swimming, the clouds rolled in and the downpour commenced. Swimming in the rain was a lot more fun than I expected. Anise almost learned how to swim. A lot of us got pretty cold, though, and a bus came to shuttle groups of six back to the cabinas. Once everyone was back home, most of us sat in front of the TV, watching Spanish-dubbed American shows or a few Spanish-subtitled shows in English—as we have many times.

Dinner was cabbage salad, rice, and a type of large noodle filled with potato. It was accompanied by a bag of (delicious) sweet bread desserts, and everyone was pleased. After dinner and a horrible but addictive movie, Tim took a group of four on a night-hike. We walked down the road and climbed over a barbed-wire fence to look for animals, but according to Tim, we found ourselves in a “monoculture” without much wildlife. We went back over the barbed wire and took the road that leads to the school in Esquipulas. We saw lots of spiders and ants, a centipede, and a firefly.  We ran into about five toads altogether. The walk back was filled mostly with stargazing, and Emily and Dylan caught a toad next to the cabinas. Unfortunately it didn’t get a chance to make it into anyone’s bed.

We all did make it into our own beds, however, and slept soundly after such an exciting day.