Nicaragua

Hey Y’all! It has been almost a year since I was last on this blog in Tanzania with Engineering World Health. I found blogging to be a really rewarding experience that allowed me to further appreciate my time in Tanzania and now allows me to look back at everything I did with more clarity. So now, I’ve decided to continue to blog for the summer of 2017. For this summer, I was lucky enough to be hired as the month 1 Lab TA/ month 2 On The Ground Coordinator for EWH in Nicaragua. This blog is not going to have great writing quality. It is mostly just a place for me to dump my thoughts and my pictures and might not even make any sense to anyone but me at some points. But I hope you enjoy! (Also, I’m probably going to write a few of these in just Spanish so if you want to read along google translate will work!) 

So I guess I’m just going to dive right in…

Granada

Photos of Granada will come soon. I have been super busy this week, but I am hoping to have more time to just wander around and take pictures soon. When I first arrived there was a little bit of a culture shock. Driving into town from Managua, we were passing bunches of carts on the highway that were drawn by trotting horses. Upon arriving I realized that it is hot. Really hot. Like Texas and Tanzania both seem frigid by comparison. And finally, there was a festival for Saint Mary so people were setting off firecrackers “bombas” starting at 4 a.m. every day until around 10 p.m. But it is absolutely lovely here, I already feel at home. All of the houses are painted in different pastel colors and it is filled with beautiful churches. My homestay family the Mairenas are really, really awesome. Both the mother and daughter are named Adriana and the father and son are named Salvador. They have some great senses of humor and are helping me learn Spanish because only Salvador Jr. speaks English.


Food

I typically eat 3 meals a day made by my homestay mom. “Gallo Pinto” which is rice and beans mixed together is a favorite here. Also, Nicaraguans really like corn. A lot. There is even corn moonshine. The only song we have learned in class so far is about corn. Here is a video of us trying food that is entirely made from corn…

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Fried corn tortilla and gallo pinto

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Sopa with lots of stuff in it.

Engineering

For the first month of this summer, I will be in Granada taking Spanish classes and helping out with the developing world medical equipment repair classes by teaching the lab portion that involves engineering things like electronics, power supplies, troubleshooting, etc. Just like last summer, we go to hospitals on Fridays to prepare for the second month when participants will live near hospitals where they will work every weekday. This time, I am there to help explain the steps and procedures used when approaching a repair for a broken piece of equipment. Here are a few pictures from our visit to the MENSA offices where a lot of broken devices are sent.

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-Whitney and Danni working on Microscopes. One had a burned out bulb and the other only needed to have its lenses cleaned-

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Iyad (the professor) explaining how a centrifuge works to Tracy, Nico, Kevin, Mackenzie, Teja, and Hiba. This one was only missing motor-brushes.

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Alyssa, Iyad, Tracy, Seth, and Mckenna discussing a malfunctioning autoclave.

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Microscopes again.

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Everybody. There is a ventilator to the right and some mobile X-ray machines in the back corner.

Lab pics to come soon, power supply lab is tomorrow 🙂

Fun Things

Just like last summer we have the weekends off. This weekend we went to…

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Laguna de Apoyo. Legend says that all of these lakes in Nicaragua are connected because they are incredibly deep at the center.

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Volcán Masaya. It is an active volcano. We could see bubbling magma at the center.IMG_4879IMG_4883

A ceramics school where everything is made in the original indigenous way with only natural products, colors, and a wood-fired oven.

IMG_4058And a day at laguna apoyo. Tried to swim to the bottom to test the theory, but only managed to get a sunburn.

 

Thanks for reading, more to come soon!

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