There's a saying here at Ross that the days may go slowly, but the weeks fly by. How true that has been! My week was full of outings and adventure.
Monday: I got up early for the free shopping trip to Roseau. The Ross Spouse Organization pays for a taxi to pick us up at the school library and then drive us to the capital of Dominica, Roseau, which is an hour away. We stopped at the Coke Factory where you can get a case of soda for about 1EC a bottle, which is great but they didn't have any Diet or Coke Light. Too bad so sad. Once we got to Roseau our wonderful driver Bruno took us from store to store, helping us load up our groceries as we went. I wish I had gotten a picture of the van on our way back.. it was jam packed with bags! The other great thing was that we each got dropped off at our apartment when it was over. So you could buy as much as you like, not as much as you could carry. I spent about 1,000EC which my handy dandy converter tells me is 370US. I know this sounds like a lot, but I basically bought what I thought would be what we need for the month, other than produce. Hopefully I guessed right because the next Roseau trip isn't for a month!
Tuesday: I went to the prep school early to meet with the director because she said she had a tutoring job for me. It is such a tiny school! So, so different than Fairmont. The director then talked me into volunteering once a week, hinting that if I did I would get tutoring jobs. I agreed and she sent my phone number to a parent, and I got an afternoon job. I have dreamed of this situation for years! How great it would be to tutor in the afternoons for money, but not have to teach all day. I'm so lucky! I'm not going to make the same rate as in the states, but I will make 5 times as much as any other job I could get here.. so I'm happy. The rest of the day I hung out with friends and went to the pool!
Wednesday: Our laundry came back. There aren't laundromats here, so when the bags are full I call up Hermina and she comes and picks up our laundry and drops it off the next morning. It costs about 7US dollars a load. Everything is folded nicely and smells great when it comes back!
Wednesday was also our trip to Bense Pool. It was a short hike down to an amazing pool and waterfall. I made a video from the trip, but what I didn't get on tape was the natural water slide that you could take down from above which shoots you out at the waterfall. It was a really fun adventure!
Thursday: It was ridiculously hot. I spent the majority of the day hiding out in the CAC playing board games. The CAC is like a rec center, with big TV's, pool tables, video games, and mostly importantly: air conditioning. Then it was off to the Scuba Social, and then the girls game night/clothing swap.
Friday: Up early again to go to the Moucherie Rum Distillery. The tour was okay, they showed us the 19th century machines they use to crush the sugar cane, and the boilers they use to extract the alcohol.
The best part was the end when we got to do a tasting. The guide brought us to a table of Rum and let us try whatever we wanted!
Saturday: Bright and early we took a cab to the market. Very oddly, there is next to nothing in produce at the local stores, you can only get it at the Saturday Morning market between 6 and 10am. I came home with a huge bag of fruits and vegetables for less than 10US dollars. Pretty awesome. I even found basil! So we had creamy pesto pasta for dinner last night, and it was delicious. Also, I went to a "garage sale" where the 4th semesters who are leaving in December started selling the things they aren't taking with them. I scored on a rug, bug spray, and several kitchen gadgets. Mostly importantly, an oven thermometer because my oven is measured in Celsius. Now, if I could only figure out how to turn the oven on...
Today/Sunday: I was pretty excited about going to the beach today, but about noon it started with the thunder and lightning. Hurricane Julia ruined my plans. Knock on wood, hurricanes usually pass right by our little island and tend to hit the more northern islands, but we still get plenty of rain as they go by. Instead of beaching, I spent time Skyping my mom and Kristen and then went to the CAC to play some games and watch a movie. Then I made some yummy homemade cheesy chicken and broccoli rice for dinner. My dinners have improved dramatically in the last few weeks as I collect more spices and staples in my cupboards.
All in all, it was a great week. Chris has his first test tomorrow, and is still up studying. Wish him luck!