Saturday, June 21, 2008

Better (EXTREMELY) Late Than Never

So, it's 7 a.m. and I still haven't been to sleep. I was looking through various online photo albums, and I realized I never blogged about my spring break spent in New Orleans doing community service. I was wrong in assuming that my blog is only read by my peers, and anyone who was waiting for pics from spring break to be posted could just look at the album on Facebook.

However, I now know otherwise. I took too many pics to post them all, but I'll show a couple. All in all, spring break was a marvelous experience. Sorry for the corniness -but truly- it was, and there's no better way to describe it. I met some of the most amazing people. It humbled me to interact with people on a daily basis that were so concerned with the environment. Not to mention, I felt so at one with nature... that feeling has left me since. Meaning- I doubt you'll catch me running through the woods in a sports bra uprooting trees anytime soon.

Don't count on this happening again

I actually love that pic. I was running through the woods, just beaming happiness- whether or not you can tell :) Refer back to the post I actually did while in Louisiana if you need proof. As I was saying, we spent an entire day uprooting trees that were harmful to the habitat. Mind you the soul purpose of the trip was ecosystem restoration. Pulling trees out the ground felt more destructive than productive. It was definitely fun though.

Our first two days were actually spent in Mississippi. We were pulling objects out of swamps (that were still left over from the hurricane)/wooden frames that got torn off of houses and building fences.

In midst of the fence building processFinally done with part of the fenceMe, feeling like Ms. Fix It
Go ahead & laugh-this
ones on me :)
Sisters are doing it for themselves! Other days were spent clearing trails. One particular day that I didn't care for in the least was spent bundling trees which had thousands of the biggest mosquitoes I've ever seen in my life all over them. Did I mention that the cabin we stayed at had so much sulfur in their water that it smelled like eggs? Egg showers- not popping, but the water feels like silk. That may not sound logical, but you'd have to feel it to understand.

O, let's not forget our method of transportation. We (did I specify who 'we' is for those who didn't read the post written in Feb/March when I found out I was going/went?)... 'we', being me and my fellow community servers, got to Mississippi/Louisiana via charter bus. A 20hr. ride might I add. Talk about spare time. How was mine spent?

Reading: Another book I HIGHLY recommend& taking pics of willing or not so willing participants

The greatest part, by far, was experiencing the actual culture of a place like New Orleans. I can't begin to tell you how spicy the food is. Bourbon St. was no joke. Every night of the week was utter chaos. I can only imagine how it goes down during Mardi Gras. On the flip side, Mississippi was the most serene place imaginable. Note the difference:See any similarities other than the people?
No? Didn't think so.

What am I missing? I think I've covered it all. Wait! The people. Uh, duh. The most wonderful group of community servers who I ended up adoring by the end of the trip. Really. Spending a week cramped in close quarters with a person will do that to you. Granted, I did sleep on the balcony a few nights... the sun rise after a light rain is something to wake up to. Random fact: we had breakfast prepared at a shelter for recovering alcoholics. Different recover'ers (what's the proper word?) spoke with us every morning, and friendly they were. Gotta love that southern hospitality. Anywho, back to my comm. service lovies:

Me, the boys, and Candace-
"They say a midget standing on a giants shoulders
can see much further than a giant."

My lil' boo thang- Goldie!

Can you tell this entire trip was pure bliss for me? It twas', it twas'. Trips out of state with strangers sharing a common purpose (all expenses paid, might I add) can turn out right. I would go so far as to suggest you going on one- immediately. I think that bout wraps it up. Again, my apologies on the uber late inform.

I Should Be Sleeping,

1 comment:

  1. The Ms. Fix It Pic was the best lol...all you needed was the toolbelt

    But yeah as I was reading through your wonderful experience at New Orleans, I couldn't help but to notice all the hardships that you went through during your brief stay there...while at the same time thinking that the majority of people in America, including myself, wouldn't have been able to take the mosquitos, egg showers, that long bus ride, etc.
    Then again I always thought it took a special type of person to perform community service in the first place. It always tends to be those jobs that most people want to do the least. Like cleaning up an environment, helping others in need, and last but not pay. It takes a special kind of person that sees the inner purpose of improving the lives of those around them and not thinking about themselves. I could never see myself volunteering to go through this experience filled with this much adversity. So I commend you for being a better person than myself and hope that God blesses your soul eacn and every day.