My time in Guatemala has been filled with wonder, compassion, love, and all that good stuff. However, me being a white, privileged male from New York (born and raised) coming to a rural, impoverished environment that I am not used to can feel like the worst thing in the world at times. Yes, it can be tough but I made the most out of it because I learned a lot about myself. Here’s what I found: I am a procrastinator to say the least. Sometimes it works in my favor but other times (most of the time) it doesn’t. The time spent worrying about the things I have put away should be used to showcase the passion, love and care I have. Furthermore, for the first time in my life I have to do things on my own, no help, no safe haven for me to tuck away comfortably like a child scared of monsters under his or her bed. I have to change. I have to fight that monster that keeps me up at night. And I am so thankful for the three amazing instructors that helped me get to this point. “The problem is the solution,” the all-talented Juancho said. We learned this quote before but I guess the laughs washed it away, or maybe I just didn’t want to listen. Anyway, the point of the quote is to show that problems and solutions are interchangeable. There can’t be problems without solutions. I challenge myself to step forward and take responsibility for myself instead of relying on what is comfortable and what has always been available. This trip has not given me the opportunity to realize that about myself, (because I did a long time ago), but to stop pushing it off because it has been my biggest procrastination thus far.
Staying on a positive note, or as my close friend from this trip Graham would say, “keeping the stoke levels high,” I am truly honored to be on this trip. I have never been so excited to learn in my life. The Spanish lessons have proven more than helpful, as I can honestly say I can get by in a Spanish-speaking country comfortably. Aside from the wonderful Spanish lessons, the conversations of history and culture are intriguing and truly amazing to be apart of. Yes…Sometimes I space out and lose focus, but in actuality its me trying to keep up with the incredible group of individuals I am surrounded by. If any parents read this, know you have done an incredible job. This trip comes with surprise moments. Surprise moments meaning you find something so interesting and want to make it your life’s work. And these are things that you would never think of in a million years. For example, no one in my family has ever farmed, but what we learned about Permaculture and Millpa systems was so interesting. The idea of living sustainably with nature and being one with world. Understanding that to be a human is not any different from being a tree, and recognizing that everything needs to work together in order for things to run smoothly. These ideas were foreign to me, especially coming from a place where there are barely any trees and the biggest concentration of trees we have in New York is man-made, and yes, I’m talking about Central Park. Putting this all into perspective is hard, and it is a lot to compartmentalize and fully understand. However that doesn’t mean I will stop and put it aside. I’m gonna put my best foot forward and take this challenge head on.
Thank you for reading ! This is for my family. Love you guys so much.
Goodnight San Diego
Ron Burgundy signing off.