June 26, 2013

By the end of today we had given away approximately 300 boxes of books to over 50 schools and non-profit organizations, totaling over 10,000 books. It’s pretty awesome to think about how much these books are impacting this community and I am proud to be playing a small part in it.

We actually had the Minister of Public Services visit the center today. This was supposed to happen on Friday, but it was luckily rescheduled for today. The simplest way to think about it is to imagine a Congressperson or Cabinet member visiting a school to review the work being done. It’s a highly prestigious honor and is usually accompanied by press, a formal ceremony, and speeches. I was quite nervous about the whole thing, but was relieved to learn that, thanks to a scheduling conflict, it would be today. This meant no pomp, no circumstance – just a regular visit by some high up government official to learn about why we had 20,000 books sitting in our front yard. It was a very nice occasion and no one seemed to mind the fact that I was covered in filth, sweat, and tears.

Another, less fortunate, thing manifested itself today. It appears as if our group has been struck with traveler’s diarrhea. We actually had to keep three students at the hotel today, too sick to do much more than sleep. A number of students had been sharing water bottles and the bug spread rapidly. It seems to be under control now, but it was pretty dicey for a short while. Thankfully, everyone seems to be on the mend and we had full attendance at dinner tonight!

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