Sunday, October 3, 2010

Positive Scanning

When Kate and I first decided to do this blog we agreed that we would try to be as open and honest as possible. We wanted to share the full experience of our six month internship here in San Fernando. As you may have guessed from our previous posts life here in San Fernando has been a bit of a struggle lately for both Kate and I. When your day is consumed by ant infestations, worrying whether or not you have toilet paper or if there will even be water to flush the toilet (a very stressful experience when you are battling diarrhea), heat exhaustion, mosquito bites (and the constant fear that maybe this time you have dengue), constant reminders of how quickly your predecessor learned Ilocano (and the feeling of inadequacy that goes along with it), and the stresses of life back in Canada (looming student loan payments, fights with boyfriend/friends, etc...) it can all be a bit much to handle.

So more as a reminder to myself (and Kate). I took some time to reflect on somethings I really enjoy about life here (some positive scanning for once if you will). So here's my quick list of things I am thankful for:
1. Simple Reminders: Inspiration from our City Tour during our first week in San Fernando. How easy it is to forget sometimes.

2. Amazing Flora: Nerd Alert! After a summer  semester of flora and ornithology , I am constantly on the look out for new plants and birds. Some of the flora here is incredible! And my two week ornithology class has forever changed my mornings, so far as I now on a regular basis awake to the dawn bird chorus and have noticed a change in the songs since we've arrived.

3. Furry Friends: I have to resist the urge to take every stray goat we see home with me. I snapped this picture one afternoon well waiting for a Barangay session to begin. As is typical of most afternoons, it started to downpour and these goats sought shelter from the rain. 

4. Good Food: It doesn't happen often but on occasion we do find a good meal. Lola Nanny's has become one of our favourite places to visit. Located in San Juan meters from awesome surf, you can get delicious grilled fish and veggies for around 180 pesos (approx. $4) its a bit on the high end for prices here but the view, friendly staff, and packed restaurant full of surfers make it well worth the price. 

5. Sunsets: The sunsets here have been pretty incredible. Despite, the dengue risk, capturing the amazing sunsets from the beach in front of our apartment is well worth it (that is if we make it home before 6pm to see it!)

6. Ruins: I don't know what it is but I love old stone structures. From our current apartment you can see the remains of an old building. I'm still a bit confused as to what it used to be, one co-worker informed me that it is the remains of a watch post against attacking pirates back in the day.

7. Laundry Lines: Nothing makes me happier seeing clean laundry blowing in the breeze. 

8. Friendly Co-workers: As much as they drive us crazy somedays, I think we would both be lost without the company of these two.

9. Coffee with real milk: Sure it was still instant coffee but it was nice to enjoy a quiet cup of coffee with real milk instead of the usual powdered milk or chemical creamer.

10. Hot Yoga: Instead of complaining we've found a use for the unforgiving heat and humidity here... HOT YOGA! With a little help from our favourite yogi Eoin Finn, Kate and I enjoy free yoga sessions on a daily basis. The best part for me, aside from the price (FREE!) is that so far no concussions (side note: for those of you that don't know I had to stop going to hot yoga in Canada after I fainted during a session and gave myself a concussion). 

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