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Monday, February 8, 2010

February 7, 2010, Sunday—Breakfast at the SD Market
This morning we made our way via bus and taxi to Santo Domingo Barrio Bajo Etla for a fabulous breakfast at the Sunday market. 

The townspeople set up a weekly market in a field adjacent to a soccer field.  It was a great morning with the sun out and not too hot.  There were several kinds of tamales (green, sweet, and mole), memelitas with chorizo and chicharron, salsas, fruit, vegetables, tacos, café and hot chocolate oaxaqueno, a drink made from corn, and pan dulce.  Needless to say, none of us were hungry after that.  Maria set up a table & chairs for us to enjoy the sitting and talk. We sat around the table for awhile and talked about our two cultures, our presidents, where we live, etc. After a while 2 sisters, Ittai and Karla Perez, about 11-13 years old came and wanted to practice English with us.  They learned English in school, starting in kindergarten, and spoke without accents.  In the group setting they were very shy and we tried to make small talk with them.  They were great!

The group broke up when Maria invited us back to the municipio for a meeting. She and two council members sat at the table to discuss a meeting she had with an engineer last Friday (February 5) who had presented a plan for a treatment plant (that we all think is totally inadequate), and go over some of our agreements and discussion from Thursday night.  It quickly became apparent we needed more help with translation.  The 2 girls were called.  These girls did a fantastic job of interpreting the conversation and once they got going they brought themselves into the discussion with their own perspectives and ideas.  It was a truly amazing thing to see these young girls using their fledgling English skills and describing the situation in their community.  At the meeting we discussed the need for a solution to treat 100% of the waste-water with a plant that is easy and inexpensive to maintain.  This is an alternative to that which the engineer proposed which treats 50% of the water. The meeting ended with everyone looking forwarded to the Water Forum (sponsored by INSO) on Friday the 12th.

Camerino Santiago gave us a ride to the taxi stand in Etla where we said “hasta la vista” and not good-bye.  We caught a community taxi back to Oaxaca with the typical capacity of 6 passengers and the driver.

It was such a lovely day I (Susan) decided to take a long walk in search of streets without construction.  I followed Pino Suarez to the end.  The street name changes when crossing the highway to San Felipe.  It was a very pleasant way to spend an hour.  I (Susan) went to church and got lost in the ritual associated with communion.  I was about a half a step behind but did get to say good-bye. I came home to find Rick and Stan gone to dinner.  Francine and I went for gelato down at the Zocalo.

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