Semana Santa in El Seibo

2 04 2010

Holy Good Friday- It has been quite a morning.  I’ll start at 12:30am when I came back home after a movie and dominos at another volunteer’s house and my dona gave me a not-so-subtle guilt trip about how great it was that one of our neighbor volunteers had gone to Catholic Church and participated in Communion and it was too bad that even though she invited me I didn’t want to go.  Dios mio.  Sin embargo, I was still invited to go to the river early in the morning, at 5:30 am as long as I didn’t tell anyone.  Well, it turns out I got that about half-right.  The 5:30am thing was dead on, but what it turns out she meant that we weren’t allowed to talk until we bathed in the river.  I figured that out pretty fast when my ‘Buenos Dias!’ was stoically ignored.  So instead of morning chatter, my don just fired up the ridiculously loud car, and we drove then walked to some non-contaminated river and had a morning bathe.  It was pretty awesome going for a sunrise swim, and extremely hilarious to see my dona struggling like crazy not to speak.  Silence is not the way of Dominican women!

When we got back there was this African/Indigenous/Catholic? procession- kind of a mini-carnaval, with the whips, music, and costumes but minus the drag.  It was still early and not blistering hott so I went on a run and to check out the procession for a bit, and accidentally ended up in the middle of a face-off between some Evangelicals somberly marching and shouting protests against the incoming dance procession.  Some seriously bizarre stuff, and all before 8am!

In other news, I am allergic to life in El Seibo.  Random swelling, rashes, skin irritations, sunburn, and lots of eye issues are a daily occurrence for me here, but at least I don’t have giardia?   Besides these setbacks life is pretty good.  I am settling in well with the host fam, and in spite of my heathen disregard for the Catholic religion my padres seem to dig me.  My host-dad raises and trains cock-fighting roosters, so we have about 60 chicks, roosters, and hens in our backyard (cock-fighting practice videos to follow).  My dona is retired and is pretty into the local political scene.  I also have a 26 year old sister and two brothers (22 and 15).  I am their first volunteer so I am giving them a crash course in how to talk to a gringo b/c I still cannot understand the Dominican accent to save my life.




One response

2 04 2010
Berry Forde

that’s pretty interesting jen. so “religious” and yet they raise roosters to fight and hurt each other. religion …

i love getting this in my e-mail now … technology … aint it wonderful?

happy easter honey bunny!

love, berry and randy

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