Tuesday, January 11
So we arrived yesterday and all I could think was that I was home. The sounds, the smells, the heat and the memories came washing over me.
Our day began with a pick-up from the airport shuttle at 2:30am. 11 hours and 2 flights later and we arrived in San Salvador. Our enthusiasm was slightly diminished when we realized that only 2 out of our 6 bags of luggage made it through. Most of the costumes that we packed made it but our personal items did not. After navigating baggage service we found Roberto and his son, Roberto Jr. (who is also known as Robertito or Mini Roberto) and we were on our way to Suchitoto.
I should explain who ‘we’ are. Travelling with me are Mike, who will be doing lighting and sound design and tech and Lela, who will be doing some work with Zoila (see posts from last March and from Kim in Oct/Nov) in the area of pattern drafting.
By the time we went to bed last night Mike and I felt right at home and again and Lela had completely fallen in love with this beautiful, quaint colonial town.
Today was a flurry of activity with meetings at Es Artes to introduce the staff there to the first wave of Stratford volunteers. As well, we had our first meeting with the Director of Esquela Taller, Hector, to discuss the integration of our set, lighting and sound build with their curriculum. It was amazing to see how far the technical school has come in just a few short months.
The afternoon was a great opportunity for me to get some work done in terms of scheduling for the next week and answering the ton of emails that had piled up in the last couple of days. Lela had a great afternoon getting to know Zoila and meeting some of the women who had worked with Kim on the previous production. They bonded quickly and, although Lela speaks only the tiniest bit of Spanish, managed to have a great afternoon of learning interspersed with describing their lives and families. (I believe a long discussion of breastfeeding was involved all without the assistance of a translator! Picture that if you will :)
Our day ended with a fantastic dinner with Tatiana, the Artistic/Executive Director of the Suchitoto-Stratford Es Artes Initiative. It was a wonderful opportunity for Mike to reconnect and for Lela to get to know a bit about this amazing woman who truly makes this project happen.
As I sit here on the balcony of Villa Balanza (my home for the next 7 weeks) looking out over the pinpoints of light across lake I realize again how extremely lucky I am to have the opportunity to participate in this amazing project.
Hopefully our luggage will arrive tomorrow so that we also have the opportunity to wear some clean clothes!
Spanish Word of the Day:
Hediondo – stinky
as in: Estoy hedionda – I am stinky!