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Een vleugje Peru   (published in Peru)

July 13, 2010 by   Comments(0)

 In juni 2010 was ik (Lieke) de gelukkige die vanuit het Projects Abroad kantoor in Nederland op bezoek mocht bij onze collega's in Peru. Het is een korte maar heel mooie en interessante reis geweest die ik niet meer zal vergeten. Voordat ik mijn ervaringen vertel, stel ik mezelf even kort voor.

Ruim een jaar geleden (in maart 2009) begon ik met mijn baan voor Projects Abroad in Nederland. Hoewel het grootste deel van mijn werk op kantoor is, heb ik mij nog geen dag verveeld. Mijn persoonlijke ervaring met vrijwilligerswerk in Roemenië en Moldavië en studeren in Zuid-Amerika komen goed van pas bij het adviseren van mensen die graag naar het buitenland gaan voor vrijwilligerswerk. Begin van dit jaar hoorde ik dat ik naar een van de bestemming mocht om daar de projecten te bezoeken en mijn collega's te ontmoeten. Peru was ook mijn eerste keus, maar eigenlijk is er geen bestemmingen waar ik niet heen wil.

Op zaterdag 12 juni vertrok ik uit Amsterdam om via Madrid en Lima op zondagmorgen 13 juni in Cusco aan te komen. Mijn collega Ernesto stond op het vliegveld te wachten met een bordje van Projects Abroad en een taxi om mij naar Urubamba te brengen. Onderweg kon ik gelijk mijn Spaans oefenen en dat ging boven verwachting goed. Gelukkig sprak hij ook Engels, want echt vloeiend Spaans spreek ik nog niet. De rest van de dag had ik de tijd om bij te komen van de lange reis (totaal 24 uur) en het dorpje te verkennen.

Urubamba is een leuk dorp met een typisch plein waar veel mensen op een bankje zitten om met elkaar te praten en wat te eten. Dat heb ik dus ook gedaan en al snel maakte ik een praatje met een lokale bewoner: alweer de tweede test voor mijn Spaans op de eerste dag. In het hotel waar ik sliep kreeg ik nog een kopje thee van coca ...

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Een vleugje Peru
Een vleugje Peru

Archaeology- A visit to the circular pyramids!   (published in Mexico)

July 13, 2010 by   Comments(0)

The day came and everyone was ready to go! A nice trip to the circular pyramids called 'Guachimontones'! This pyramids are really important in the area and it is one of the most important archeology sites in the country. These pyramids are more than 2000 years old!

The Guachimontones were very important ceremonial centres. Build one circle above the other until reaching the final height. They included a pole in the middle used for dancers to perform on top of them. People were not used to live there but they used to celebrate Equinox and Solstice as the major festivities of the year!

Everyone had a good time, we had the chance to watch a video documentary and a visit to the museum! After that we went straight to the pyramids area. 

After a nice lunch with everyone we came back to Guadalajara! I really enjoyed of this trip, and I hope everyone did as much as I did!

Thanks to everyone who joined!

Looking forward to the next trip!

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Archaeology- A visit to the circular pyramids!
Archaeology- A visit to the circular pyramids!

Insight into the Argentinean cowboy's world - Fiesta Familiar   (published in Argentina)

July 12, 2010 by   Comments(0)

On Saturday July 10th I took the volunteers to see a local gaucho gathering near the small town of San Esteban. After a bumpy ride through farmland, we arrived to what we first thought was the wrong place, everywhere we looked it was deserted. However, with the help of an old man we discovered the “arena” where the competition was taking place.









Gauchos from around Argentina had gathered for three days to celebrate their skills with horses and compete with each other. I knew they were great horse riders but I didn’t realize how well they rode. It was impressive, especially when we met a 5 year old boy who rode as if he had been born on a horse.

After a morning watching the gauchos compete in the arena, we headed for lunch and enjoyed the festivities there. I felt like a family gathering, and our presence made it very interesting for the volunteers to question the gauchos about their horse riding skills and culture. A couple of choripans later, we headed back to another arena to see more horse riding skills before going back to Cordoba city.

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Insight into the Argentinean cowboy's world - Fiesta Familiar
Insight into the Argentinean cowboy's world - Fiesta Familiar

My First Day in Jamaica   (published in Jamaica)

July 12, 2010 by   Comments(0)


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My First Day in Jamaica
My First Day in Jamaica

Expedition 4 - finding the tooth   (published in Sri Lanka)

July 12, 2010 by   Comments(0)

A frustrating start to the weekend as I went to Colombo on Friday to sort out my Indian Visa. They had said before that I had to be there at 8am to get my visa – no one thought to mention that I wouldn’t be able to reclaim my passport until 5.30pm! So we went to visit the Projects Abroad office, and then went exploring Colombo. It’s busy, noisy, dirty and basically everything you would expect from a big city. Some of the shops have seen better days, and the area around the President’s residence is understandably heavily fortified. It was hot, so having had lunch we went back and sat in the Visa office, enjoying the air con.  The guest house in Colombo was amazing, the architecture was great; there were garden areas indoors with mesh roofs so that the rain and sun could get in. The only downside was that the car was parked next to the three piece suite!


The train the following morning to Kandy was lovely. The journey was mostly flat, until the last 40 minutes or so when we climbed steeply. Every tunnel we went through the children stuck their heads out the windows and screamed!  The scenery was lovely and worth the extra money on travel.  Kandy was again hot and busy; we went out of the centre to visit a tea museum – tea factories are noisy places.  The bus ride back into Kandy was interesting, I had to stand on the steps at the door because I was too tall to stand actually in the bus!  In the afternoon we had a look around, saw the lake and went shopping. The rain came down….In the evening we went to see some Kandy dancers who were good, but looked a little bored with what they were doing. After that we went into the Temple of the Tooth – again, heavily fortified and subject to body searches ...

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Expedition 4 - finding the tooth
Expedition 4 - finding the tooth

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