Thursday, May 23, 2013

Day 3

What a humbling day.  After breakfast we left with Alanna and Jennifer Tynan, sisters, friends, and founders of The Latitude Project.  They took us into a rural village south of San Juan del Sur, where the houses are very spread out and the people have very little interaction with others outside their village.  We started at a preschool, where the children were very shy.  Because they do not see many visitors or people from outside their village, they were reluctant to speak with us.  They eased up when we gave them all Mickey Mouse stickers, and we gave the teacher some school supplies.  We continued on the dirt road to visit a family that had received mattresses through The Latitude Project.  This family houses many visitors and families in the community who need help, and they had been sleeping on a wooden table.  The family was very friendly and excited to see us.  It is obvious that Alanna and Jennifer are well-liked in the village for all that they are doing.  Everyone gets very excited to see them, welcomes them into their homes, and even send children after them to ask them to visit.  We visited another two families who received new roofs through The Latitude Project.  We met one mother and her nine-day old baby girl, who was asleep.  We were so moved to see how these people had so little, but took so much pride in what they did have.  The outsides of the houses were painted with flowers and animals and the insides were incredibly clean.  We walked up to the well and found that there was an man inside about 20 feet deep, digging it deeper.  It was incredible to see this process, and how hard people have to work to get water.  The community was working together, with one man digging inside the well, a few people pulling up the buckets, and another moving the dirt and rocks away from the well.  As we were about to leave, we found out that the government program that delivers rice and beans to schools for lunch had skipped the village this week.  This meant that the children would not get a meal the next day.  Alanna and Jennifer were nice enough to offer to pick up the food from another village and deliver it in the morning.  Everyone was very thankful, it's no wonder these women are well-liked.

We walked away from this village saying that we wouldn't complain about anything ever again.  The village was so poor, but nobody was unhappy.  Everyone joked and enjoyed themselves, despite the heat and the poverty.  It was a great experience for all of us.

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