For those of you waiting, you noticed, there was no post yesterday. We were all too entirely wiped out to think of anything but a shower, food and sleep Monday evening. The heat was intense and the pace of our work picked up. Even with mandatory morning and afternoon breaks and lunch, it was a very full and tiring work day. The sky was blue and no rain in sight gave us a day of work without delay. We traded the rain and the clouds for the heat yesterday.
Our bonds continue to strengthen not only among our teammates but also with our local workers and partner families. While we labor we add more Tagalog words to our vocabulary. Because English is also widely spoken in the Philippines almost everyone we encounter also can communicate in English which makes for great fun as we try to learn about each other. We work. We share. We joke.
As we lay more block and the walls grow taller there is more plastering to be done. Many of our team mates are now handy with a trowel having learned the art (although not perfected it) of getting mortar to stick to the walls. Mortar mixing, brick tossing and plastering continue.
The work has a way of bringing us all together. We first acknowledge that we are all human; we are all the same. Yet we are very different. As Americans, we are consistently humbled as outsiders who need to learn the ways of the culture that surrounds us. But our Filipino partners are also curious and want to learn about us. We discover that our feelings for one another are mutual. And that brings us full circle.
And that is why we love building homes and helping people with Habitat for Humanity.
A true WIN WIN.
Time to get on board! We would love for you to join us in whatever way you are able.
Great post, S!! Nice reflection on one of the true gifts of service abroad…learning that different cultures have their own values and the American way is not the only way.
Amazing work everyone is contributing there.The love and appreciation received in return must feel wonderful ! thank you for sharing with us back home.