On our first day in Cuba, someone told me that Cuba “no tiene sentido ni razón” (has no sense or reason) and with each passing moment in Cuba, this becomes more apparent.
As a leader, this is my seventh ARCC trip — I am used to being flexible and rolling with the punches, but leading a teen service program in Cuba takes this to a whole new level. It’s a special time here. We are the first to run volunteer trips in Cuba […]
Clear blue skies, intense sun rays, and a cool breeze greet us as we emerge from our communal sleeping quarters in Patabamba, Cusco, Peru. Slight solemn smiles are smeared across our faces. The reality that we were leaving our homey village was combatted by the excitement for our river adventure. Our stay at Patabamba was something we didn’t expect.
Hola de Cuba, I am already enchanted by this wonderful nation filled with contrast: a spirited, vibrant population, mired in an infrastructure circa 1959, but extremely proud of their people, their country and their traditions, and always looking forward. Driving through the cities and small towns and seeing street after street of crumbling facades of once magnificent colonial buildings, you can’t help but wonder “what might have been?”.
It’s 6:55am and Sophia Weeks and I are in ‘Chair Class’ on a 5-hour train bound for Delhi. Chair Class means for $9 we are in a well-worn car with reserved seats…which were miraculously empty when we boarded in Haridwar. Chair Class is not as nice as luxury class where they serve rose-flavored yoghurt lassis (a taste reminiscent of sipping Glad bathroom spray) but certainly a step up from the standing room only crowd packed in further back. For nourishment we have a bag of fresh warm roti (thick savory pancakes) wrapped in newspaper that we purchased from a beckoning street vendor outside the station gates.