This and also in opposition to the men not cleaning up after themselves and cooking for themselves, my mom has stopped cooking food and if she does make something she deliberately makes it taste like crap. Hence, my brothers were surprised that the wonderful food smells where not candles, but real food made for the family to enjoy. In fact she even made dad a strawberry fresh cream cake that raised some eyebrows. I guess mom shed the Grinch who stole all the Paki food persona and decided to enjoy the holidays.
Luckily I did complete a big part of my midterm on the 4 hour ride to NYC while fighting motion sickness at the same time. We stayed at the Guest House off Park, which was a little awkward with its customer services, but worth the high-ceiling, vintage apartment right around the corner from the Empire State Building and Macy’s–plus not far of a walk from Time Square! So, here are the five BEST of the best memories of my NYC trip with ten youth!
One of the highlights of my trip down to El Salvador was linking with youth who were empowered by their communities to create self-sustainable methods of supporting themselves and/or their activism. I traveled around El Salvador as an adult adviser to the high-school Youth Delegation of the River Road Unitarian Universalists (which included fifteen youth and three adults). Almost every community we visited had cooperative style businesses and non-profits, hence, the youth in these communities also adopted this business/organizational style. Two of my favorite experiences in El Salvador where at youth driven initiatives that exemplify the different ways youth embrace independence and expression.
Relief4Pakistan is a grassroots rapid response campaign designed to mobilize a centralized donor response to the floods in Pakistan. In the second phase, Relief4Pakistan working to provide funds and support for housing and agricultural restoration in villages that are not receiving aid, that “fall through the cracks.” They will initially target 3-4 villages in southern Punjab, in Rajanpour, partnering with a local organization and the tribal leadership to ensure this success.
The situation at Guatemala City’s dump is so dire that there are coffins spilling out from the earth into the dumpsite; some of the coffins are deliberately pulled out and thrown into the dump with the rotting corpse inside – based on if the purchaser of the coffin has paid for the plot, which they have to continue to pay every year for what seems like eternity, regardless if the family is living or dead.
…..Another, grotesque fact [in New Orleans] is that the graves are designed to be like ovens and suitably called “oven crypts”, because of the humid heat the “oven crypts” helped decompose the bodies faster, hence, allowing family members and others to reuse the tomb in the future.
It was chaotic getting to the rally on Saturday morning with 10 youth and 2 adults including me. To make it worse I was dressed as the Madhatter, so people had to make room for my sign and giant green hat (I was mistaken for being a leprechaun a few times) and I held a sign with Sarah Palin dressed as the Red Queen from Alice in Wonderland.
Tikal, home to exhibitionist Spider Monkey’s (who gave me the spread eagle every time I took a picture of them), scary Jaguars, growling Howler Monkeys, Toucans, a random Ceiba Tree, and to the Massassi Outpost as seen in Star Wars IV: A New Hope. Yup, Tikal was an eye-opening, wonderful personal experience, but also a perfect learning experience about one of the first cultures in the world that left me thinking I had visited Yavin and I had been instilled with a rebel spirit that led the rest of my trip with wild abandon.
I arrived in Cancun, Mexico last night. I realized while on the plane this was the first time I had gone to a country without…
While we were zigzagging all the way south through dusty streets, which really should be one way streets for chicken buses, we drove through a town advertising boots! As you can imagine, my eyes lit up. Every store we passed by was painted a bright bold color with images of colorful handmade cowboy botas!
All of a sudden yesterday I had a craving for a combination of black beans and chocolate (not as disgusting as it sounds). Rellenito’s are small platano cutlets with a chocolate and black bean filling. It’s a very rich desert that will definitely satisfy the surprise chocolate craving.