The people living on Beacon Hill, you have very little space to “strut their stuff” for the holidays. But these folks are creative. From window boxes, to balconies, to Louisburg Square, they found ways to decorate and have fun. I just wish I could go in Monday night and trick-or-treat.
Thank you to everyone who contributed, offered prayers and shared the link to the Go Fund Me page to help Rosita get treatment to save her vision. In the past week, people contributed over $200 towards her treatment. I spoke with the program director down in El Salvador and he was touched by people’s spirit and generosity.
If anyone would still like to contribute, here is the link:https://www.gofundme.com/saving-rositas-sight-2tunvg4
Thank you, again.
Last Sunday, I pulled over by the side of the road to make this image (made and edited in my iPhone) along the Nashua River in Hollis, NH. Wind and rain had caused us to lose much of the foliage, but this spot still looked quite nice.
As a bonus, say hello to my little friend. He is a porcupine that I’ve met a few times while hiking. He lives around an often traveled pathway along a dam on the conservation land near home. He is rather cute but is low on the cuddly scale. This was also made with my iPhone from about ten feet away and then cropped to enlarge him a bit. Sorry, that it is a bit grainy.
A couple of years ago, I heard a cast member of one of those outdoor reality shows say that in the wilderness “If you’re not doing something all the time, you’re doing something wrong.” The same applies to trying to do an eighteen-month graduate program in a year.
We are halfway through the first semester. I’m enjoying it and learning so much. The faculty are wonderful. It is a small program, and there is a benefit to that. The classes are fun and the assignments are interesting. For example, the image above is from a class this week in which a guest lecturer talked about and demonstrated her use of origami to teach English.
Still, taking graduate classes for the first time in fifteen years has been a bit of an adjustment. In addition to the usual reading, tests and papers, we are required to journal, spend fourteen hours observing in at least three different classroom settings, contribute to discussions online, prepare lesson plans and perform teaching demonstrations. My background managing projects is coming in handy. I pretty much viewed the semester as a big project and developed a plan for workflow. It is allowing me time to get my assignments done without feeling overwhelmed. This helps to focus me on learning rather than just getting assignments done.
So, my life is busy. The football game is still on the television on Sundays, but I don’t get to see much because I’m usually editing papers or something. We still have time for an outing here and there. I’m trying to fit fall chores in between assignments and doing a little bit at a time. Life is good and in less than a year, I’ll be a teacher.
I’d like to introduce you to Rosita. She was one of the students that I taught in El Salvador this summer. Rosita is a quiet girl, a little shy; one of the 9th grade girls.
Rosita suffers from a severe form of myopia called “degenerative myopia”. Basically, her eyeballs are rapidly growing longer. It’s a rare condition that can happen to teens and young adults like Rosita. Typically, people with degenerative myopia go blind.
Rosita’s condition can be treated. In El Salvador, they treat this with a multistep process. First, she has to wear these special eyeglasses for ten months. The photo above is her with her ophthalmologist working on getting new glasses. Afterwards, she will wear contact lenses and then later have an operation. With help from Teaching You (the group with whom I volunteered), Rosita has taken the first step and has her glasses.
But the rest of the process costs $1,000 USD. While that might sound not so expensive to my American friends, El Salvador is a place where people make $200 a month on average. Basically, the cost for Rosita’s treatment is equal to five months wages in her country. There is no health insurance there to cover the cost of saving Rosita’s vision.
I’ve not asked for donations for a cause like this before. If anyone would be willing to make a donation to help Rosita save her vision, even a few dollars or Euros or whatever currency you use, please go to https://www.gofundme.com/saving-rositas-sight-2tunvg4
There is no pressure, I’m just trying to help out be spreading the word of this need.
Thank you for reading
Since returning to school, my daily exercise has involved more hiking outside than going to the gym. I still try to hit the gym a couple of days a week, but it’s twenty minutes away compared to local trails only a few minutes up the road. Most days now, I am hiking on these trails. I think part of it comes from having really enjoyed exercising outside while I was living away this past summer. I miss taking walks in the park in El Salvador and looking at the volcano, but this is pretty special also.