A typical day here starts with the sun. Priorities include coffee, a hearty breakfast, and a good playlist for the long journeys through bumpy dirt roads to Nicaragua’s rural villages. Our truck doesn’t start without a push but we’ve gotten used to it and have it down to an art. After we lock in the 4×4, we’re off. Hitchhikers jump in along the way and sing-a-longs to our Nica rockpop music always leave us with a smile. Ox-carts, roaming cattle, wild horses and cowboys share the road.
The primary focus of this initiative has been building roofs (in anticipation of the region’s rainy season) but we’ve picked up side projects such as medical initiatives, school maintenance/support, and taking kids to the beach for the first time on our days off. Everyday is different. We might be banging nails on the roof of a one-room shack shared by two families, swatting roosters away while we bake “Nica bread” in a kitchen with dirt floors, taking horses up the mountains to learn about villages that can’t be reached by car. Talking to grandparents who have lived through some of the country’s most tumultuous times and endured horrors that leave us speechless. Seeing bewilderment in the eyes of a child who is staring at the ocean for the first time before taking off at full speed, surrendering their clothes to the wind and flinging their little bodies at the waves with reckless abandon. Falling out of orange trees, dodging barbed wire, pumping water from wells, playing baseball with a rock and a stick. Sitting on ant hills, learning to drive (honk) like a local, losing weekly soccer games to a pack of 10 year olds on the beach. Driving through rocky valleys that will soon be rushing rivers, firing blocks of clay to make bricks, fixing water filters under the scorching summer sun. Watching tears well up in contented eyes of men and women who now have roofs over their heads. Those are a few of the experiences we’ve had this week.
Yep… charity is an adventure, not a chore.
paz y un abrazo,