I’ve been working for the past two weeks-and-change at La Fundacion Paraguaya, one of the oldest microfinance institutions in South America. That’s actually less intimidating than it sounds…

I work primarily with two gentlemen at La Fundacion. Rodrigo is rather serious and incredibly focused, and he is charmingly, perpetually, forever drinking matE. I have it on good authority (or more specifically, I heard once anecdotally from my former roomate, David) that apparently Voltaire drank 72 cups of coffee a day. well Voltaire ain’t got nothin on Rodrigo.

Roberto is also great, and characteristic in his own way. He has taken it upon himself to, every day, teach me something new to say to women in Guarani – the indigenous language – that I might one day fool somebody into thinking I am a local long enough to forget the area code on my cellphone when exchanging numbers.

Both are delightful, and very receptive to my new ideas, which is refreshing after any substantial amount of time spent in academia.