Fourth of July

Trip Start Sep 05, 2005
Trip End Nov 07, 2007

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Flag of Dominican Republic  ,
Friday, July 21, 2006

Many of the volunteers had decided to visit Pedernales, a beutiful beach near the Hatian border, to celebrate the birthday of America. Being low on funds and afraid that leaving my site would be detrimental to my programs (no worries, they fell apart regardless of the fact that I was here!) I decided to host my own 4th of July bash to help facilitate the transmission of the PC goal to familiarize other cultures with our own. I made guacamole and bought hot dogs and invited other volunteers who were not going to Pedernales to the bash. I also invited all the neighbors.

Three other volunteers made it to my site, along with Neal the special ed volunteer that lives in Pimentel. We had the idea of going to the river and throwing back some ¨cervezas¨ to celebrate American style. However, on our way to the river amidst the jungle of trees it began to rain and the mud was so deep it reached past my ankles when trying to transverse the path leading to the river. At that point we realized there would be no river-bathing for us and we went back to my house.

It continued to rain and we were unable to grill the hotdogs (Neal had borrowed a Dominican ¨barbeque¨ which ended up being a car rim on stilts...not quite what we had expected, but hey, the Dominicans can make anything from anything which impressed us still). I hadn´t bought that many thinking the Dominican neighbors would surely take advantage the opportunity to cook something and bring a dish, but no one did. My party suddenly consisted of about fifty neighborhood dominican kids looking to be entertained. I pulled out some of the board games my Aunt Karen had sent me and the kids enjoyed them, though some of the pieces went missing and the kids fought over most of them. Then, the 12-year-old girls in my Escojo group performed their Reggaton routine (and it was actually ¨G¨rated so I was proud of them) and some older folks came over and brought soda, so it wasn´t a complete disaster.

The next day, Neal and I were taking some wire off the dominican ¨¨grill¨¨ and it whipped back and stabbed me right in the left eyeball. When it was still stinging me the next day, I called the nurse to tell her what happened and she told me I should come to the capital right away. I ended up having a torn cornea and have realized that next year I am going to Pedernales with everyone else instead! Hopefully you all had a better fourth of July and enjoyed some fireworks for me!
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