Friday, March 24, 2006

Having another disabled person here on this program has been very interesting and nothing like what i was expecting. Her name is Jade and she´s from Leeds, very sweet but we are so different that it is becoming very awkward when we are constantly put together. I have had to make it a point that even though we are disabled there is only so much time we can talk about what kind of tires we have or how many curb cuts we saw today. Facinating conversation, i must say it´s comprable to the last week i spent in Costa Rica. Learned some key things these past couple weeks, such as I have a real problem with people pushing me in manual chairs, i turn into the most horrid person. At the beginning they were dismantling the chair so it fit in the back of a regular car and so of course when getting out and in, it took too much effort to put it together and so they borrowed a manual chair. That lasted a day. I could literally feel my blood pressure rise and each time someone ran into the heels of the person in front i could just abiout kill someone. But we all have issues i suppose, mine just seem to be manual chairs and therapists. :) But Jade loves people to push her and actually left her power chair at home, she says it´s so social to have people around you all the time, i said my social life definently would not be improved by my being in a manual chair to say the least.
I have also learned that this Latin American male machismo works in my favor. Machismo meaning male superiority in strength and skill creating a male dominated society. But this creates guys who always help and want to show off. Like in Costa Rica i can go just about anywhere and men will always help. Last night went out with David and a pack of guys lifted me up the stairs in the wheelchair. I have stopped feeling bad about the poor guys backs and just think of it as strengthening their egos. Mind you i probably couldn´t be around guys like that too long, might have a similar reaction as the manual wheelchair.
I have had a difficult time at the Escuela Especial this week, not due to the kids or anyone in particular but the reality of the poverty and the abuse has smacked me right in the face. On tuesday i was helping this 7 year old girl in my class change her clothes and i saw the bruises and scars on the inside of her thighs. I was suspecting the abuse before because she was very inappropriate with showing her body and acting out but i have to say it was so so hard to see it. Probably the most difficult thing is that she is so poor and has a mind of a 2 year old that nothing will be done for her. Everyone is fully aware of it but can´t prove anything and there is certainly no prominant social services in Villa El Salvador, not to mention that 75% of the kids in the school are being abused in some way and so it is part of daily life. In fact the games and activities that we play with the kids are geared toward checking them for abuse or wounds that we can treat at the school. This was the first time i have actually cried for the kids i have worked with, i don´t think it was pity but just anger maybe.
Yet at the other end of spectrum there are parents who are the most lovely and caring people. They are wonderful with their children and hopefully i will visit some when we do home visits.
I am now teaching English on Sundays at the Casa de Panchia, for women factory workers who get one day off a week and they choose to take english courses. It is incredibly fun and they are so eager to learn that it´s just incredible how much they take in in the 3 hours. So i am there for the next three weeks so no big trips, though saturday will be free.
Finally cooling down a bit actually went from bloody boiling to merely boiling so making progress.
Love you all

5 Comments:

Blogger Emma Smith said...

Where in god's name is your next post!! It has been 5 days and I need something entertaining, and somehting in English, as you cna see my spelling is nicht so gut. Your replacement arrived and then another one did too. Lara is her name, then another girl had a problem with her family so I got Theresa as well. THeresa has a beautiful German/English accent, i relly enjoy. it. I am going crazy and I am quite tired, unfortunately, today is my work day, school work isn't so bad but i must prepare for the massive amount of homework dur tommorrow as well as go to babysit and my ceramics class. No matter how wonderful children are they are still children and i have a natural dislike of them. Although mother insists that when i turn 30 i will become psychotic and want lots of little babies. She's probaly right but i would only want them for anatomical study and medical experiments. No I am not evil nad psychotic already just prepared. God i am tired, i bet i wouldn't be so crazy if i were there with you, in that fantastic city. Fantastic isn't the word but sinec i cannot consult Gregory, I am at school, i will have to htink of it later. please write a post, i dont like begging. love you and your " " city.
Love your narcissistic sister. (who cannot spell at the moment)

2:12 PM  
Blogger uncle nicky said...

Funny this host seems to have forgotten me. Hmm guess not it seems I can post a comment now. Well the description of Lima is quite the shock. I never really looked it up on map, I assumed it was in the foothills of the Andes. Glad to see you still have your train of kids and their special treats for you. You will leave your mark on them and hopefully the staff to speed up the process of special people (not sure if I was politically correct trhere). Nice use of Latin men I knew sooner or later you would have them carrying you around in a litter. Love to read Emma's comments a nice refreshing laugh and well its just Emma. The abuse thing it was not too long ago here that nothing was done and as history always repeats itself something will get done, for better or worse. Can you believe it the English are finally banning smoking in all public places including the bastion of filth smokers THE PUB. Still no job the life of leisure still has a strong appeal too bad the bucks are not long enough to support this endeavor. Take care and watch out for the pee!

10:14 AM  
Blogger meg smith said...

Hello Uncle Nicky,
Lovely to hear from you hope all is well and hoping the job market is opening up, still there is always a job for you at my college!
Who are they joking the English are just like the Irish they`ll never stop smoking in pubs. Good God it`s horrible here, you can smoke anywhere. I come home from resturants smelling like an ashtray!!
Miss you lots and found a nice spot on the beach to put our hut!

3:29 PM  
Blogger meg smith said...

Em,
Your wish is my command, been ill so don`t yell too much!

3:30 PM  
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