Monday. 5.17.04 5:19 pm
2 of my classes today were cancelled. Yea! Had work in the morn, one class, lunch, and here I am. Going to nap soon, probably after this and some other internet errands.
I got back from the TJ housebuiling project yesterday @ around 5 30. IT WAS SUCH A GOOD EXPERIENCE. I did feel uncomfortable sometimes with the religious reflections and prayers but everything was so worth it. It was really amazing to cross borders and spend a good amount of time there, and have the time to reflect on my own life and what I've been doing lately. It felt good to be outside, to work hard, help build a community, and form so many friendships. I think one of the best parts of the trip was bonding with so many people. Everyone was so nice, and to be out there with them was very inspirational.
The best part of the whole experience was the trip back to the border the first night. A mexican rep told us about the border epxerience and the struggle that people have to go through to cross. I don't even know where to start, there is so much to say and to express: Friendship park in all its irony...a fence that divides the border that even goes into the water to prevent swimmers from coming into the states...the "houses" there aren't even houses to us, they're literally like big boxes...it's so dirty and polluted...the whole trip really gave me a reality check on how lucky we all are. I don't know what to say, it's something you really have to experience. It felt so good to be outside, sweating, working hard for a cause, and to experience a different culture and place. Everything was really awesome.
I've gone to many places, tried many new things, and made many new friends this year, but this trip was nothing like the others. It was like the big bang to end it all. I came back to SD and I felt a little out of place, to be in a place like TJ one minute, and the enxt to be back in all this luxury. I felt like it was all so unfair, this kind of disparity among neighbors. The first thing one of my roommates said to me when i got home was, "Did you get tanned?!?" which really kind of irked me. I understand her though, but yeah...you know what I mean.
I cried last night, and I don't even know why. I was watching this show on campus with Ryan, and during intermission I just felt kind of shitty or something, I don't know, but I started to cry. I'm sure it had to do with TJ but I don't know. So we left and rented The Triplets of Belleville - such a good movie!!! I LOVE IT! One of my faves now!!
The more I do things down here, the more I experience, the more out of place I feel. I don't know how to describe it. But this trip has definetely inspired me in so many ways. One is that I definetely want to go live in Vietnam.
Oh yeah...this year I have been so immersed in VIetnamese culture and history. Language...I'm still working on it. haha. But I'm hoping that this summer I can teach myself and read a lot of VIetnamese, with the help of my mom...
It seems like what I have told you of TJ has not done justice to the whole experience. It's something that I have been looking for for a very long time. I don't know what else to say. I'll show pictures later. Reunion on Wednesday - I'm so excited!
SO that's it. Anyways, I hate ending journal entries, so just know that from now on that they will always be blunt and nonmeaningful. Bye!
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Saturday. 5.15.04 11:31 pm
the blog is back [dun dun dunnnn...] kinda randomly found this by googling and it looks pretty cool so i signed up. hopefully it's userfriendly. IN CASE it isn't, you add entries by going to "entries & mods" in the blue hyperlink bar under "home" [which is in the green bar!] okay hopefully you lovelies will speak
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