I came to the Aldea without any clue of what, where or when I was going to work. The thing that you don’t get very much information about things here can be kind of confusing from time to time, but there is nothing else to do with it but to ask. And asking is what I do these days. I ask about routines, names, words and what ever you can Imagine. I have the responsibility for thirteen boys between 8 and 11 years old. Everyone full of energy day in and day out. I didn’t understand anything of what they said in the beginning. They have another way of speaking. The Santa Cruz dialect with a childish unclear way. It is really difficult, but I start to understand them now. I just have to learn all the words who got something to do with cleaning the house, fighting, playing and of course blaming another of something someone else did.
My name is now Estèban. I got this name because my real name is way to difficult to say in spanish. I am called “Hermano Estèban” by the kids in Alalay. I don’t have numbers for how many times I have heard “Hermano Estèban, I don’t want to do that” or “I want to climb on you, hermano” When I give permission to be a tree to one, it doesn't take long before six or ten other boys hang around my neck saying “Me too! Me too! hermano Estèban! Please!”
I still have a way to go before I understand everything which is going on. Getting respect from the kids is another task. A difficult task. I have to get respect in a language the kids know way better than I do. That is hard, but I can see a great improvement the three days I have been working with them. A week more and I will catch up with their vocabulary (which is by the way very small, but different from what I know) and then things will be easier. Not easy, but easier. It is challenging, but I love it!