i have been remiss with the posting. i haven't posted on permanent beta (though i will soon), and this is my first post here. hello everyone.
cat and i signed up today to volunteer with an organization called L.I.F.E. (which stands for "luchemos para una infancia feliz y con esperanza," or "we strive for a childhood with happiness and hope.") our orientation guide talked protocol and showed us videos, much like dr. pierre chang from LOST, except that his name was ola and he was from tallinn, estonia. cat and i told him we'd been to estonia last summer; he wasn't as excited as we'd have liked him to be, not even when we told him we'd been to the estonian islands saaremaa and hiiumaa, though i thought i saw a faint upturn of his lips when we told him we liked tallinn better than riga.
the orientation lasted over an hour. the topline: sign up, show up, and wear the "L.I.F.E." t-shirt. we will be going into the villas, or slums, of buenos aires, where, according to ola, they smoke a lot of paco (don't do drugs, kids). ola also lit upon something incredibly sobering: the children there, he told us, go to school not because they want to be ballerinas or astronauts, but because school is the one place they can reliably eat one good meal a day. more to come on this front. we're looking forward to working with the kids. our first day in the field with the dharma initiative is wednesday.
in other news, i might see if i can do 10-15 hours of one-on-one tutoring every week, in lieu of spanish classes (cat has already decided to get private lessons). the classes at the schools have a decent structure, and the teachers have been more good than bad, but i'm not getting nearly enough practice speaking, and the two schools i've attended to date seem far more concerned with receiving payments than with making sure the students are learning. we'll see. i might try one more school before i officially jump ship.
also, i've yet to check out the casino at puerto madero, which i'm told has poker, but it is next on my list of things to do. i'm very excited about the potential to play live a few days a week.