My blogs about
My first day in
Day two was by far my favorite day of the voyage thus far. A group of about forty students boarded a bus headed to an Operation Hunger service visit without really knowing what to expect. Our first stop was a Xhosa shanty town where only about three community members spoke English. Our work center was the
As the more industrious students weighed the kids, I started playing ball with one little girl who was maybe five years old at the oldest. By playing ball I mean that she would throw a tiny red ball into my hands and I would toss it back to her. I almost felt like she enjoyed missing the ball more than catching it because when she missed it she would have to run around after it! I could spend all day talking about that one little girl! When she finally grew tired of her toy (which took quite a while), she and I went outside to see how the planting was going. I left her with one of the other students while I quickly went to get my camera. When I returned I had my personal life-changing moment. I walked in the gate and saw her standing alone by the door looking somewhat worried and confused. She turned to look at me and suddenly I knew what to do. I knelt down and held my arms wide open and she ran straight to me! As I held her I understood the power of unconditional love. It didn’t matter that we couldn’t understand each other, or that we had only met several hours before. At that moment I was the mother and she was the child and there was nothing else. Sadly our time at
This moment was not the end to the day and our Operation Hunger trip continued to a soup kitchen in an English-speaking township where we fed anyone who needed food. I did not have another epiphany, but it made me feel good knowing that my actions in the world were making a difference in the lives of others. Our trip concluded with all the students pooling together approximately $250 to buy toys for the children of Green Park and our trip leader telling us that she had seen forty students who would someday make amazing parents. At the end of the day I was feeling fairly morose and I did not know what to do with myself. Most of my friends were on safari and I was still having trouble digesting everything I had seen and done. It was at this moment that Clive from deck 6 Garden Lounge told me that things would get better. I went to a bookstore and out for coffee with my favorite professor, who had also been the trip leader for Operation Hunger. Clive was right, things did get better!
On the third day in
My fourth day in
The final day in