Tuesday, April 29, 2014

The rear view mirror... provides opportunities for growth and change, and stories to share.

Everyone says how noble and exciting it is that I have given so much of myself for this event.  I can see that it is a good thing, that it is offering tools needed for their communities.  I can also see that we are helping with logistics and problem solving and developing these individuals and giving them an opportunity and interest in these skills and this knowledge. 

Along the mouth of Masaya
I also look at what I get, I am privileged to be welcomed into this community, to be trusted to give information and skills to these people who are excited to be there.  Not just excited but dedicated to their active and dynamic communities.  To hear of their successes and how they overcame battles I can never imagine.  It is phenomenal.  I realize and reflect on the fact that I have so freakin much in my world, that I am selfish and own more crap than I will ever need.  And I am humbled by the time in Nicaragua.

The group we taught this year was pulled in last minute, another local group, but none more deserving.  They do say that everything happens for a reason. They were hands on, engaged, performed skills, scenarios and worked as teams, and blew my mind.  I have to admit that I was a very proud and happy instructor. 

Public Hospital in Jinotepe
We had a strong group of women in this group, they were ready to work, and work hard, to share stories, and senses our humour.  That was cool to see.  We also saw some who were more shy, but will benefit from knowing these skills.

I sadly also saw the attitude of some boys that was unwelcome, made the women feel uncomfortable, and comments that were unprofessional and behaviours that are not appropriate for anyone to demonstrate when put in this position of power.  I expressed my unhappiness, my disbelief of their attitudes and that they need to realize the opportunity.  I wanted them to hear my voice as a woman and as other women would say.  My translator was happy that I was brave, I was happy she was brave enough to say what I was saying, I hope they think about it.  I really do.  There are a couple from the group that if they hadn't been disrespectful with the others, they would have done well.  Sigh.  The others in the whole class were unhappy with them, and expressed it that same day, men and women alike.  So they heard it from all sides.

We also met Elka, and the other Bomberos from San Marcos and Diriamba, and they spoke of their brigades, and the work they are doing.  They work for ever cent, they have ancient equipment donated from the first world nations, then through Managua and filtered down from the big city services, they have old trucks and old gear but they work hard to provide for their community.  They fight for all of their funding and their skills.  I want them to succeed and work hard... and to have the things they need to provide.  Most of all have the knowledge to work with what they do have and to move forward.  And even cover in the holes in their parking lot.

So in the end I see myself as lucky, proud and happy with the progress of those we have been lucky enough to meet.  I was excited to participate, wanting them to get the best of the group, and the group was fantastic.  Excited, fun, energetic and professional.  All lessons were taught with the ease and ingenuity of McGyver, and the spidey senses that we all develop with experience. 

2014 Progress... had to go with the group candid.

So after a time in Nicaragua, I have been lucky, I have been blessed by the beauty, the community, the energy even when it is 35C at noon, or eve 50C with humidity... like on Ometepe.  I am slowly learning to make reservations for hotel rooms, deal with money in spanish, to see and learn about the biology, economy and life in Nicaragua.  I have so many thank yous to give out, and so many that I don't know where to start.  But to those I met, talked to, shared experiences with and met up with again later on, thank you.  I'm a better person and hoping for that to carry on. Gracias Nicaragua!! :)

Cerro Negro
The world demonstrates its power, and we demonstrate our ability to work with grace... and we respect it.

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