Saturday, September 21, 2013

The other side of evil is good

Today was a really tragic day for Nairobi. My heart goes out to those affected. The hospitals put out a call for blood donors so we went to go try to give blood. After waiting, we were turned away at the end of the day because so many were there to give. People were from all of Nairobi's communities. Today was a day of tragedy for many families, and this nation as a whole, but I was absolutely moved to be reminded that just on the other side of evil there is good.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Friday, August 26, 2011

Remember when?

My generation has seen some interesting developments. Remember when the internet was dial up? Do you remember your first email account? We never used our names, because this was the internet, people all over the world could see it, you made up something clever instead. Ah, the World Wide Web. Instantly, at the touch of a button your electronic mail was on the other side of the world. It was mind blowing.

Then came chat rooms. You scrolled through the yahoo topics, picked one, then joined a group of people all over the world giving your one line input on whatever you chose to think about for the 10 minutes you were in there – of course, that's only if your connection ran fast enough. Then came ethernet, and myspace, and google and “googling,” and facebook, and wireless, and blogs, and gchat, and skype. Are you going through the progression in your head? Then came the convergence: iphones, and ipads, and iphones with skype apps so we could video chat. Then there are those other things I don't even know anything about - twitter? The fact that our faces are out there in that book at all times so anyone around the world can look you up and add you as a friend. And... it's not even really mind blowing.

Then I was sitting in front of my TV and I had this idea that really did blow my mind, or maybe imploded my mind. Let me tell you where this whole post originated... I was watching a news program and thinking this is where connecting like-minded people around the world originated. The TV. Then all those technologies I listed above flashed before me. From AOL dial up to Wii to that laptop commercial with the kids who are talking on skype to their father who is working abroad (you know it, right?). Finally, I thought about the future and saw the merger of all of them:

I imagined virtual images of us people walking in and out of “chat” rooms speaking to strangers from all around the world on whatever topic for which the virtual room was formed. I thought, whoa that will be cool.

Then I thought: Remember when that was why we traveled?

Saturday, January 30, 2010

A sweet kind of life

Blue Skys
That I still struggle with Spanish
That people still try to listen to me
Letters from home
Packages from Home
Vitual dates
My Peruvian neighbors
My brothers
My Economia Munial professor
That I rarely get out of bed to do Yoga
My English lessons
That I still hate cooking
That all my things would fit in one box
That I rarely have a plan
That I've completely lost my life plan
Postcards received and sent
That I think 68* is cold
That I spent Christmas with two friends on a continent that isn't home
That we never hitch hiked
That I can't seem to buy shoes
Dinner parties where I don't actually cook
Running into people I now consider friends
The Italian-Spanish Accent
How bureaucratic problems don't exist here (because they refuse to recognize them)
That I'm still not enrolled for next semester
The river

My friends who live in so many different countries I can't count them off hand
Tiramisu (“Pickmeup”)
That I can't spell
That I don't know any English grammar (and yet I teach it)
Laptops in Bed
My laundry on my roof
The piano music which sometimes comes from the apartment above ours
My Bike
The absurd amount of cultural events
The music in the streets
The lights of the cathedral
School kids in school uniforms
Orange couches
Orange trees
That 1:15pm is a reasonable hour to wake up...

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

I love my postman

He brings me packages and letters. Recently he brought a Dating book from Ecuador, Stars from Seattle, Accounts of Journeys from Colombia, Insight from New York and Naked Buddhist Monk Postcards from India.

I may never go home.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Life Recipe

There's no recipe is there mom?

Here are some things you told me a long time ago, which I've only recently really learned...

Be honest, Be honest. People know when you are lying, and it's just bad karma.
Only your perspective controls your situation.
You can't be something you're not- if they aren't going to like you, YOU might as well like you.
Only you can decide your value (your friends won't always be there to vouch for how awesome you are;).
You can't ask for something from someone that they can't give, you just have to accept them for who they are.
You can't replicate experience had by another, so don't try. This is your life.
Don't compare yourself to others there will always be greater and lesser persons than yourself.
You should probably know WHY you like the ideas which you like.
Insecurity is overrated, and everyone is insecure. Bridge the gap.
When you are asked a question, think about what you really think the answer is.
Do what it is that you want to do, and trust that others will do the same.
Take care with your words.
Don't try so hard, it's exhausting.
Be aware, think about a situation, try to predict a situation, but more than that... be willing to fly by the seat of your pants!
Don't over-analyze, it's about enjoying doing something good.
Sometimes, somethings, will have significance only for you.
You do little things everyday for those things which you love and believe in.

Have more to add to this mix?

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Second Hand Thanksgiving

Today was the second day I woke up to gray skies and wet ground. That almost never happens in Sevilla. It was also the second day I ditched class. All for the best however, I've never once gone to school on Thanksgiving, and well I just don't think it's appropriate to start at 21. I suppose I already celebrated. As most know I had about 13 people over for a thanksgiving celebration the past Saturday and it was really nice but it wasn't exactly Thanksgiving.

I've been in Sevilla for 2 months now. Renting an apartment for two months, buying groceries for two months, but not really living. For example, I don't have a single English book to read, I don't own a long sleeve shirt here, and I haven't been doing my homework. However, this morning I got through about 4 weeks of homework - mission partially accomplished. Then headed into town intending to price items (like books and clothing) that I would probably later buy at the outlet mall.

Instead when I arrived to lock my bike at Plaza Nueva there was a book fair. Therefore, I didn't have to go to the English section of the corporate book store after all. I found three books and am looking forward to reading them. One was given "to George with love" in Germany in 1953. Then I window shopped and wandered until I arrived in my favorite barrio of Sevilla. There I stumbled upon a second hand store. The best second hand store I've been into yet, it actually had clothes more than a decade old. It is also apart of an NGO project to raise funds for volunteers in Africa. I bought three awesome shirts that were certainly manufactured in the 70s and a sweater. Then I spent about 30 minutes speaking with the proprietor. He's from Cameron, speaks six languages and moved from London to Sevilla in August to open the store. I'm going back next week to volunteer. While I was speaking with him Syvlie (you are the best) called me to wish me a Happy Thanksgiving. My phone never rings, and even when you think you're all alone, you never are. I shortly left the store and I had a pleasant walk back to my bike and bike ride home. When I arrived home Raffa had pasta on and the three of us were able to eat together, that almost never happens. What a nice Thanksgiving dinner it was after all.

I had the best day. I have the best friends. I have awesome roommates and great plans. What a wonderful world to be thankful for.