Archive for December, 2008

Recycling shapes

Oaxaca Cactus living in the Botanical Collection at El Charco del Ingenio.

oaxaca cactus

Bomb photography

View of “Baker” atomic bomb explosion at Bikini Atoll on July 25, 1946 — the last of three American tests.  Image by © Bettmann/CORBIS.  Found on Karen’s Google Reader shared items.

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oh Cory

Cory Pontha struggled with merging a wordpress blog onto her news webpage.  She wanted it to look seamless and for other authors to have access to the blog.  She wasn’t sure how this was going to work; but she had the feeling she was going to have to install wordpress.org once she had access to the server and could upload files.  Her heads were spinning.  She wished she had been born knowing how to do all this stuff like tadpoles seem to be.

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Not to have anyone

Simple and beautiful

I’m reading through all the Proyecto Itzaes documents Cindy gave me when I visted Merida.   This student’s voice particularly struck me… there’s so much potential in these young people.  They just need a chance to go to school.  

My name is Laura. I am seventeen years old, and live in Ixil. I am a volunteer teaching assistant for Proyecto Itzaes. I currently study in the University Preparatory College (high school)  of the State of Yucatan, which is located in the neighboring town of Chicxulub Pueblo. I enjoy studying and playing sports. I am now in my fifth semester of preparatory school, but as I have no further resources it will be the last year of my studies.

My life is very complicated now, because I am an orphan. My mother passed away a year and a half ago and my father does not live with me. I can only study now because my brothers and sisters help me with what little they can, but they also have to support their own families. I live on what they give me. They give me 120 pesos (~12 USD) every week, an amount which I must divide into transportation fare for the six days I attend school.

This situation is precarious; I must do odd jobs to be able to buy my books and school supplies. My foremost goal is to study teaching, with a concentration in languages, as I think that with these skills I can help my community to succeed. I consider myself a good student, receiving an average of 9.1. I enjoy working hard and learning all that may serve my in future life, but I believe that I will not be able to achieve this goal as I don’t have anybody who helps me 100%. Every passing day prices get higher and with them go my dreams of being able to be a professional, of being somebody in this life. I believe I deserve an opportunity to excel and I know that somewhere there must be someone who wants to help me; truly I hope so. I know it’s very sad not to have anyone to help you.

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Botanical Gardens

One of many trails

Fernando and I spent Christmas Day at the Botanical Gardens, my favorite place in San Miguel. This ecological preservation zone extends over 250 acres of nature reserve.  It includes a wondrous botanical collection and is rich in biodiversity.  There’s a dam you can walk across and remnants of pre-Hispanic stone tools and ceramics. We spent half the day wandering around the dirt paths that lace the preserve. Fernando grew up here. As a young boy, he and his friends would run around the grounds all day. With all the rocks, water, trails, and hiding places, I can’t think of a more ideal place to spend a childhood, or Christmas for that matter.

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The Neighbors

Hill view

When I walk the back way to grocery store, I pass by homes made of tin and cardboard. When I walk in the exclusive neighborhoods lining the orilla, I find myself in the midst of multi-million dollar homes. These neighborhoods are walking distance apart.

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Balcones Alley

On the way to the botanical garden

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Merry Cactus

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