During the last three days, I’ve completed my first rotation of volunteer work across three families here on Isla Tenglo.  Over the next day or two, I’ll work out a full schedule for continuing the rotation.

On Thursday evening, I spent time with Veronica and her two boys Guillermo (9) and Felipe (6), teaching them English, using their school workbook as a guide. 

On Friday, I spent the afternoon with Mari and Rupe and their daughter Rocio (16).  For most of the day, Rupe and I built new stairs up the incline in his backyard. Future work may include building a greenhouse, feeding the animals, and helping Rocio with her English.  I admit I hope it’s not cleaning out the pig stall, but I will if I am asked.

On Saturday, I met Adela and her granddaughter Loreto (10).  Adela asked me to prune the apple trees in her orchard, so that they would fill out and not grow so tall.  This meant clipping some of the upper branches, which proved challenging.  Using rope, I was able to pull some of the branches down toward me to clip them.  Other times I had to use an old wooden ladder I found in the shed.  We’ll see how this goes. Teaching Loreto English may be a safer option.

Saturday evening, I met Christian’s son-in-law David.  He is an accomplished sailor, lives locally, and runs a sailboat repair/maintenance business.  I have offered to work for him for free, in exchange for learning more about boats, so we’ll see if this pans out as a fourth volunteer opportunity.

During these few days, Christian and Lali have been super helpful, available, and generous every step of the way which I truly appreciate.  I've enjoyed a few evening cocktail hours and dinner with them.

Here are a few pictures of what I’ve been up to:

Building a set of stairs in the garden.

Building a set of stairs in the garden.

The apple orchard I'm pruning.

The apple orchard I'm pruning.

This beats working in the office!

This beats working in the office!

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