Heading South

Hello friends. Welcome to this blog, where I’ll write (and post photos) about my experiences teaching and living for two years in Caracas, Venezuela. I’m moving there in a few days, carrying all my belongings in an old paper sack, just to avoid the craziness of shipping to a country where it can take months (months!) for customs to open the crate, check things out, and decide they’re okay.

My new school, Escuela Campo Alegre, is really going the extra mile (or kilometer, I guess, since despite the nation’s troubled politics, they’ve wisely gone metric) to make me feel at home: when I arrive at my furnished apartment, they say, I’ll find a fridge full of food. No word yet if the bed is made with a mint on pillow, or if all new teachers really do get puppies, as they promised in my interview.

My pals Jess and Chris already work at the school–in fact, they were responsible for finding me the job, and for pitching my candidacy to the school administration. So if things go well, as I expect they will, we can thank them. If the whole show heads South (hey–I’m already heading South), let’s just blame them, okay? I’m looking forward to working with good friends and having semi-local guides to the city.

Some Venezuela background: you might already know it as the place where parts of Jurassic Park were filmed. Naturally, the rest of the country has moved well past the Jurassic period; no out-of-control dinosaurs in the cities, even if gangs of velociraptors still roam the countryside. It’s home to record-highest-waterfall Angel Falls, and also to the second-largest oil reserves in the world. President Hugo Chavez is the guy who said, after George W. Bush left the podium at the UN, that he could still smell the sulfur of the Devil. Caracas has been off the tourist radar for a while, but they’re hoping to bring the people back. Maybe you’ll be a part of that renaissance if you come for a visit!

Okay, I hope you’ll check back here every now and then for an update and pictures. You can subscribe to this blog by email by filling out the little “follow by email” box in the upper right column; you’ll get an email every time I post something here, and it could save you the trouble of checking in, only to find old news.

¡Nos vemos pronto!

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