Sunday, December 30, 2012

Dec 30 - Bienvenidos a Guatemala

These three words we have heard scattered throughout our day. They barely begin to describe the hospitality of the Guatemalan people. Most important: these three words officiate the beginning of our stay in Guatemala.

Before I get too ahead of myself, I’ll start back to this morning, when we woke up to the snow-filled streets of Cincinnati at 4 am. We somehow made it to the campus police station on time, but also almost backed over our beloved CJ when leaving Kiersten’s house. But not to worry, we all made it to the airport in one piece. Our welcome on our flight to Atlanta was when the pilot made a special announcement for our group, which elicited applause from the entire plane. That was a special and humbling moment for all of us, and I was surprised by the gratitude our fellow passengers showed us.

What those passengers may not have not known, however, is that although we will be helping the citizens of Guatemala medically, they will help us in ways we cannot yet imagine or put into words. My last trip to Guatemala has shaped me into the person I am today in innumerable ways, and I cannot begin to envision what this next week has in store for each one of us. The happiness I feel engaging with this culture is absolutely indescribable. The sights, smells, and sounds that filled the streets as we walked tonight were exhilarating, and we are all anxiously awaiting what tomorrow will bring. Our group grows closer with each minute we spend together, and I know that by the end of the week we will have bonds and memories that will last us a lifetime.

My group requested that I send a “Hi Mom!” from each student, and assure parents WE ARE SAFE AND ABSOLUTELY ECSTATIC. So really, Moms, no worrying. Malia sends a shout-out to her siblings to say, “I miss and love you!”and Sara sends a special message to her grandma to say, “Miss you!”.

Sending love back to Los Estados Unidos,

Tess Petrozzi

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