Sunday, February 3, 2008

Now What?

Kai and I watched a video today about building a house and it was amazing to see the machinery, the forms, the wiring, the pipes, the landscaping, etc that went into making this house on the video. All I could think about was lugging block, hand mixing cement, twisting rebar, leveling each row of the wall...

I would love to go back to Honduras. The question that seems to coming up for me today is "how do you use your resources?" At every turn I see stuff, excess. I do not want to live in 'a falling down shack' as Sienna so perfectly described many of the houses we saw. But I am in such a place of privledge, both in my own community and especially as compare to the global community.

Where do we focus our time, energy and resources? Where does family travel fit into the picture? How do you build relationships, connections, structures, goodwill while being sensitive to the existing community and culture? What do you do for self and what do you do for others? What is really needed in the world?

Welcome Home!

Willow and Kai stayed up and picked us up at the airport. I loved seeing Kai speeding down the airport in his pajamas to give us a hug. Willow wrote some beautiful cards and surprised us with a welcome home sign.

Botanical Gardens

We zipped off to the famous botanical gardens for a quick (really quick!) visit before heading to the airport.

Photos of kids

Gift to Julia

Instead of buying things, Sienna decided to give the money that our neighbors gave her to Julia, who is the teacher of the school we were building. We had a spanish speaker write a little note that it was for buying things for her students. I was told later that she really appreciated it.

Final Work Day

Day five was hard for me; I didn't want to leave. Wilson and I and the other guys had become friends and I wanted to hang out with them more. The language barriar was frustrating--I know a bunch of spanish words, but can only conjugate two verbs (to have and to talk).

I did manage to string together a few "conversations" and understand a bit of what was said to me--mostly declarations of admiration, questions about Sienna, and comments about our blue eyes. Wilson really wants to learn English and I hope that he is able to one day.

THere wasn't much work for us to do on Friday--I tied some rebar and mostly hung around with the girls. We had discovered the day before that we could do hand clapping games together and the kids loved to laugh when I totally messed up because I didn't do the pattern correctly. I also learned that rock, paper, sicssors is the same in English and Spanish.

Yeimi, Yeni, Yohanna and Dixi constantly were hugging me and followed me around the site wanting to sit in the shade and have their picture taken. Whenever I took a picture all the kids--even the teenagers wanted to seee the photo on the camera. We found a hibicus tree (or something like that) and put flowers behind out ears. Que bonita!

THursday I found out that the teenagers were taking pictures of us! On thier cell phones! Yes these guys have cell phones and Jim and I do not.

It was hard to say goodbye. After a group photo, some handshakes and some hugs we left. Just like that. It was such a strange feeling to just go and not know anything about these folks and yet feel connected to them and their community. How bizarre to just descend for a week, pack up all our tools and be on our way.

What will happen to these folks--all the ones who are sick and swarmed the doctors when they arrived, the kids who go to the school, the guys who built it, Julia the teacher, the old woman whose volunteers kept on visiting? Will Wilson ever learn English? Will Will's cute infant son grow up to have rotten teeth like so many of the other kids? What is really needed in the community?

Photos from the worksite

Pictures from the worksite. The morning of Day 4, Alfonzo, Sienna, Will and Wilson.