Sunday, November 23, 2008

Mad House

Okay, at the moment I am in Pizza Hut using their free internet, watching the rain come down so hard, thinking about Thanksgiving, drinking unlimited refills, and wondering what I have in store for me this week...
That is my thought process at the moment.

I am also trying very hard to upload some pictures to this post, but the blogger is just saying loading and I don't think that it will ever stop. I don't know, maybe the connection isn't fast enough.


So there has been so much happening these past few weeks I really don't know where to start. I left for my visa renewal with Lisa, a roommate from Germany, and we had the best time. Unfortunately the trip ended up being twice as long as first planned, as well as twice as expensive. We were traveling around at the same time Hurricane Paloma was brewing off the north coast of Honduras. (For those that have payed attention in the past, you would note that WE live right on the north coast of Honduras.) This weather caused us problems through Honduras, Guatemala, and even into Belize where a considerable amount of flooding started a curing just as we arrived. Since we had to stay out of Honduras for three days and the weather was crappy at best, we fled over the border to Mexico - stayed a few days, saw stunning beaches and ruins, and made many friends then started the three days of bus rids home. We stopped in Belize because the weather was great, and because the roads were completely flooded. We went to an island called Caye Caulker off the coast of Belize City and fell in love with the coolest community. Then finished the rest of the two day trip from there. 
If I had to write two words to describe my trip, they would be: bus, and weather... Buses because, well, six days total on buses, that means that more than HALF my trip was sitting on a bus, and weather because it really affected so much, rain, flooding, delays, then in Mexico, warm, breezy, and beautiful. So both those words sum up my tip pretty nicely.

We have just completed our first week of Vacation Care. I would like to say that it went perfectly, but... that would be a lie. The kids, like any other kids in the world, think that since there is no school they can behave like wild banshees. The good thing about this new schedule however, is that the volunteers set the schedule and we choose the activities; in essence, we run the show. 

Maynor, Joel, and Brian in my lap.

Enough about the kids, lets talk about me again!! :] 
We have some great plans  for Thanksgiving. They are almost as good as being home with the family; or better, depending on which day it is. 
There is a man named Ron who now lived here in Honduras. He has been helping us out many ways at the Hogar, and he is especially keen on making our stay while we are here as great as he can. That said, he has bought two turkeys ( worth their weight in gold around these parts ), and many pies and has arranged with a local man, also from the U.S., that owns a bar/restaurant and hotel right on the beach to have our Thanksgiving there. Richard, the man that owns the restaurant, is having everything else prepared for us and we will all eat together at three o'clock Thursday afternoon right on the beach. Richard is only charging $5 a person to have a Thanksgiving dinner. It is going to be a fun experience. Plus, most of the people that will be attending are not even American, so we have a lot of people that will experience it for the first time. 

In light of Thanksgiving dinner around the corner, I found some funny quotes that I thought you might enjoy:
I celebrated Thanksgiving in an old-fashioned way. I invited everyone in my neighborhood to my house, we had an enormous feast, and then I killed them and took their land.

Thanksgiving is an emotional holiday. People travel thousands of miles to be with people they only see once a year. And then discover once a year is way too often.

A lady was picking through the frozen turkeys at the grocery store, but couldn't find one big enough for her family. She asked the stock boy, "Do these turkeys get any bigger?" The stock boy answered, "No ma'am, they're dead."

"You know an ancestor of mine came over on the Mayflower." 
"Really? Which rat was he?"

How To Cook A Turkey:
Step 1: Go buy a turkey 
Step 2: Take a drink of whiskey
Step 3: Put turkey in the oven 
Step 4: Take another 2 drinks of whiskey 
Step 5: Set the degree at 375 ovens 
Step 6: Take 3 more whiskeys of drink 
Step 7: Turk the bastey 
Step 8: Whiskey another bottle of get 
Step 9: Ponder the meat thermometer 
Step 10: Glass yourself a pour of whiskey 
Step 11: Bake the whiskey for 4 hours 
Step 12: Take the oven out of the turkey 
Step 13: Floor the turkey up off of the pick 
Step 14: Turk the carvey 
Step 15: Get yourself another scottle of botch 
Step 16: Tet the sable and pour yourself a glass of turkey 
Step 17: Bless the dinner and pass out

I have to say that this last one is by far my favorite! 

Okay, now that we have had an intermission, lets get back down to business. :]

Eve, the volunteer coordinator of HHK has posted an email of mine that I sent to her on the HHK website. It is a list of the most important things that the Hogar is in need of at this time. I know I sent an email out, and I'll post it as an entry on this blog, about the Hogar needing many items. Mainly with Christmas coming up, and the fall in the economy that has hurt HHK's regular donations, they are needing any extra help they can get. If you would like to purchase any items for the kids, my current list at at this link:

Well, this entry has been a fun one: we learned about vacation care, had some laughs, and even talked about donations. 

Me striking a pose by the new sign in front of the Hogar. 

As always, we really appreciate all the kind emails that we receive as well as all the support, too. 
Know that there are two "gringos" in Honduras that love you all. Through all the ups and downs here during this adventure of ours, we have learned a lot. Thanks again!!


Some Thoughts...

I had an epiphany on Thursday: I realized while I was coloring with the children that I was talking to them. Having a conversation with them in Spanish - I couldn’t help but smile. 


What else is going on you ask?


I met my new favorite person in Honduras. She isn’t actually Honduran, nor does she even speak Spanish. Her name is Eve and she is the volunteer coordinator with HHK. She is by far the hardest working board member that I have met thus far.  She held three training meetings a few weeks back for us that I thought went really well. I learned a lot and we got some ideas for when vacation care starts.


Right now at the Hogar, there is a bad cold going around: coughing, sneezing, runny nose, and high, high fevers. Maynor had it and Santos has it now. Yesterday he didn’t participate at all because he was lying on Cheyanne’s lap wrapped in a blanket to keep him warm. A lot of the children have passed it from one to another, and I pray I don’t catch it myself. I have actually been getting a headache lately, as well as feeling achy. We’ll see how this ends… :]


I know in the past, I have tried to keep this blog as cheerful and uplifting as I can. I want to keep it that way as much as possible, but I also want to be honest about what is going on, and what I am thinking. With that said… I wanted to talk briefly about the things I am struggling with in my head.


First off, these kids have made a life-long impression on me. I see in their eyes so much pain and so much sadness at times I can’t help but want to just hold them and tell them I love them. I want for them the same possibilities that I have for myself. They don’t even know how big this world is and what is really out there. These kids have really nothing in their futures except what they came from: poverty, abuse, pregnancy at 14, no running water, no electricity, and the list goes on and on. I want to just be able to hold them in my arms and tell them that everything is going to work out, but in Honduras, with this much poverty, that would be a lie; and that is the saddest thing to me. To not be able to tell a child that their future holds much more than what they may possibly be able to know.


Along those same lines, I want to say how much of a hard time I am having being able to swallow the fact that I can’t really help them as much as I want. I am pretty sure this is a taste of parenthood. You love your children sooo much, but there is only so much help you can give them before you cross the line and make things worse.


I have had a hard time with a battle that is going on in my mind. I feel very guilty at times for what I had as a child and the wants I still have. I feel guilty for being so blessed with everything that I ever needed as a child and even now, and I still always want more. Why me? What did I ever do to deserve the loving parents and family that I have? What did I do to have the life I have? I would trade places with these children in a heartbeat so that they may know what it is like to have parents that LOVE them, parents that won’t abuse them, physically or sexually. A loving mother to take care of them when they are sick: make them soup, get them slurpees, take them to a doctor, and tuck them in at night with a kiss. I want them to know what that is like. But I am only one person, so I hope even though they can't have some of these things, maybe the time that I am spending here with them will impact them enough to one day be able to give these things to kids of their own. I can only pray so.