I finally have a few quiet moments to write an update on our life in GTMO. Our life here is constantly on the go, in demand, and in the midst of it all, maintaining sanity. I've said it before, I really did not expect to have such a full schedule living here, but I do and just about every minute is accounted for, unless I just choose to ignore an event or an appointment or my job. That wouldn't be good.
Speaking of jobs. I have a new job and this one actually pays me with real money, not hugs and kisses. I am now one of three Social Service Assistant and Linguist for the International Organization for Migration (IOM), right here in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. I knew they were here all along but never really researched their purpose. The fact that they are known by the acronym IOM didn't help either. We have so many different company acronyms around here its confusing. My first year hear I chose to not work outside of my fitness job because I wanted the flexibility to be home for my kids, raise my youngest until he was ready for school and because I really wanted to have fun and do everything I could do here.
Now that I finished my degree, have pretty much done everything there is to do and feel more comfortable with either kids home alone or kids in school/day care for part of the day, I feel the time is just right. Still, full time is not what I want. The job was posted in our local Gazette and one of the requirements was that the applicant must speak Spanish fluently. Then I heard my dads voice in my head saying "it's important to know more than one language, you never know when it will come in handy." Well look at that, it did and he was right. I applied, interviewed, and was hired, even after I told them I had scheduled vacations and days off coming up... this is sweet!!
I am now in training, working four hours a day, five days a week. A few evenings a month and on-call once or twice a month over the weekend. That's never difficult since I can't really go very far. The pay is great and the hours are VERY flexible. I really could not have asked for a better way to use my degree (Social Studies/Humanities) and my experience working with people. I have always had the desire to work in an environment where I can truly make a difference in the lives of others, not because some paper or statistics says it, but because I can see it with my own eyes.
Improving lives and making changes, one person at a time. That's what really matters.
Other than my new job, I am still teaching at 6am four days a week, train the teachers once a week, and volunteer at the Assisted Living Community once a week. The kids have four weeks left before school is out. Emily will get a job, hopefully in the Marketing department for the base, Natalie will truly LOVE going to the youth center Summer Camp, and Jonathan will continue to split his time between friends and the Child Development Center (CDC) part time.
Michael is finally Dive Certified and we went on our first dive together with another group. It was so much fun. Best way to spend the second half of mother's day. Can't wait to do it again.
The mango tree decided to overproduce all it's fruit in one full swing. I can't even attempt to count how many mangos I have peeled and frozen, cooked, drank, eaten and given away, yet my yard sits littered with a full spectrum of not quite ripe to fully eaten mangos. It's a little overwhelming and sad that I can't give these away because everyone has too many. On the bright side, it's really great to be eating mangos that I get to pick from the tree. They are the sweetest, juiciest, best mangos I've had since I was 7 years old.
Next week my friend Mary is coming to visit for a few days...very excited to have company again!!
Aside from all we have going on, all is well. Hope you are all doing well.
Until next time!