11.21.2014

Letter, December 8, 1975

Hi folks,

Thanks much for the fotos {photos} of the Indian corn. They made a big hit with Morena’s family (look at the fotos to find out who Morena is) because our "Indian corn" looks a lot like the white or flint corn they grow here. The corn here is characteristically very tall and often has purple {coloring} in stalks or ears! The native or "indio" corn here (which I’ve seen once in the mountains) looks just exactly like ours, with multi-colored kernels & everything. They say it makes good tortillas, so maybe I can make tortillas from Indian corn when I get back (once I learn the trick to it)!

How did hunting come out? It’s about time someone in the family landed a deer considering all the hay & corn they mooch off us! We had a good Turkey Day football game with campo {rural} PCVs {Peace Corps Volunteers} beating city PCVs & embassy Marines 25-24! Afterwards we proceeded to eat & then drink too much, but it was great! After eating rice and beans, turkey, dressing, mashed potatoes, gravy, biscuits & pumpkin pie are just unreal!

Before I forget, I got your film & from the last film I sent home, I’d like two copies of any pictures of my Chinese friends & I that turned out, one for each of them. I’m going back up to Atiocoyo to see them some weekend & will take them up. The tall Chinese guy is a real philosopher, says if a person wants to have the best of everything he should have an American (U.S.) home, eat Chinese food, have a Japanese wife, and keep a French mistress!

I’m sending home a bunch of photos I took here & had developed (mainly because lots of folks wanted copies of some. Never again! As you can see the quality of some is rotten. Some where I had them make more than one copy came out in different colors in the copy, & then they didn’t give me the same copies I requested in all cases! I explain each picture on the back.

Sounds like the corn was pretty good, and $8.60 {per hundredweight} sounds incredible for milk, though I’m sure all of your costs have been climbing even faster. The rainy season stayed until the end of November this year; much different than last fall when it hardly rained after Oct. 15. Actually, so much rain hurt the bean crop, which in many cases sprouted on the vine due to the dampness, & the coffee producers were crying because the downpours were knocking nearly ripe coffee beans off the trees. I never feel sorry for the big coffee producers any more though since I learned they don’t pay income taxes (which producers of other crops do) even though coffee is the country’s major export!

I’m leaving Dec. 18 for Costa Rica. I’m going down with Jaime (Jim) Olson, a fellow PCV & Wisconsinite who has his fiancé down there. He met her during training, & just kept liking her company more and more! She’s a native Costarican and a secretarial student. Anyway, I’m going to keep Jaime company, see the family I stayed with {in training}, & meet a girl Pilar (the fiancé) & Jaime buffaloed into writing to me. I’m looking forward to the trip. Costa Rica is going to look even more beautiful after being here a year. Hard to believe they have no army there when the army is so big & brazenly evident here!

Well, hope your holidays are happy!

Dean

P.S. - New Year’s resolution for Donna, Bruce, Tom, Carla & Merna. Write me once a year to prove you’re alive!

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