12 May 2002

Pottery & Fundavita

I slept great until the roosters started crowing…2am. I put in earplugs and went back to sleep. Got up around 6, showered, yoga-ed and then went down for breakfast…huevos rancheros, pan, frijoles, platanos fritos, juego, café and té. Then we loaded up in Bob’s new pickup for the trip to Berlin.

One person could ride up front with Bob and the other 3 were in the back with the luggage. He had some plastic chairs we could sit in but we decided in fairly short order that it was better to sit on the bed directly where you were out of the wind. However, the main mode of transportation for Salvadorans is to stand shoulder-to-shoulder (and standing on the tailgate and/or sides) for however long it takes.

We stopped at Ilobosco (a ceramics artisan community) to shop a bit. I got a sun plate (~$4 I think), a round-bottomed, terra cotta vase with a ring to sit it on ($1.70), a Noah’s ark ($4), and a bead bracelet ($1.50).

After Ilobosco, I rode in the cab and Bob and I chatted about a lot of things related to Westminster’s work there, his work, the people and personalities, etc. I asked him about things we heard about the first time we were there and what the current status was…mainly if the geothermal plant had done what they talked about the last time (provide transportation for medical efforts to the remote villages), concerns about water quality and contamination, etc. He didn’t know anything about the geothermal thing and we talked a lot about the water issue. I told him about the water quality monitoring project I had done with the Sierra Club and that I’d check into the kits we used. There was a lot of interest in maybe getting some so that people could determine for themselves whether the water was good. They don’t trust the info they’re getting from either the geothermal plant or the government.

Arrived at Fundavita in time for lunch then relaxed in the backyard hammocks for a while. We practiced our songs for the San Francisco dedication. I did some yoga on the patio. Then we walked to mass at the local church.

I didn’t understand a word of it. Last time (when I hadn’t been studying Spanish for 6 months…) I at least got the gist of what the sermon was about. With this guy, I wasn’t getting anything. I was sitting next to Bob and asked him if the priest was talking “at” the parishioners or if he was actually trying to connect and be understood. Bob said it was a very academic presentation and that it was most likely way over the heads of most of the people there. He wasn’t getting a lot of it and, in fact, fell asleep for a while. This is the priest who despises poor people and has made it very difficult for the parish team to work in this municipality. They pretty much have to do their work in spite of him when he’s supposed to be their guide.

We headed back to Fundavita for supper and an early bedtime. I sent an email to Del & Robyn to ask them to let me know how mom’s surgery went (tomorrow) and that they could send the info to Bob’s address.