I am fairly certain at this point that the quality of my life and the happiness of my days can be measured in how many times I hear these words spoken regarding my present activities, "wow, that was so cool." This and similarly hackneyed yet earnest exclamations puncutated our day as we traipsed from one unforgettable experience to the next - and I was so happy. It was a day of a thousand conversations, fretting and excited kids, getting ready for the great launch to homestay families tomorrow, a seesaw of confidence and trepedation.
It has been another couple of long, powerful, and super fun days. We apologize for not sending more pictures, but honestly, our days have been packed and the evening computer time has been dedicated to preparing for our final Fotovoz session with the LHI students on Friday. Andy and Katie have also been feverishly working at printing out pictures for the LHI students to take home with them. For nearly every one of those students, Saturday was the first time they had ever held a camera.
Today was a great day; we woke up to a yummy pancake breakfast made by some local women before heading up to San Andres, a mountain where Mayan ceremonies take place with a great view of Chajul and the surrounding mountains. A few families accompanied us and we make friends with Antonio, Willy, Mateo, Margarita, the kids, and Anas, Maria Teresa, Juana, some of the local women. We heard a legend about conflicts between Spanish conquistadors and the indigenous people and we briefly watched some locals burn some incense and make offerings.
From Joan Williams: To, an awesome group of adventurers who wear their hearts on their sleeves and are always willing to go the extra mile to help another out. The Catlin-OES group were amazing ambassadors to a community that is often affected by the ignorance and greed of the outside world.
Spencer: Limitless Horizons has supported the opening of Chajul’s first library, a space no bigger than a classroom, stocked with a wild array of antiquated books in Spanish, Ixil and a few in English. In its 2 years of existence, it has enrolled a few more than 300 official card-holders, the youngest member at a tender 4 years old. LHI rented the Salón Municipal today, a gym-like structure covered in the finest dust central America can offer up.
Will: Today we traveled to the town of Xix (sheesh) to spend the day with the students and also to learn about the area. We learned our Nahualas which is a Mayan fortune telling type ritual. This was definitely the most interesting aspect of the day because it gave us an insight into the Mayan culture. The people of Xix and Chajul are much more friendly and welcoming than people in America.