Wednesday, January 7, 2009
Christmas Time in St. Lucia 2/3
When work is going slow, live with passion.
During the holiday season in St. Lucia the workplace slows down and the nightlife speeds up. More time is spent on "fets" (holidays parties) and more time is spent in the streets catching up. I was amazed to find out that despite the amount of work to be done, life in the workplace is put on hold. As we are now continuing on with the new term, I am thankful for the holiday "hold". I was worried that with so much time just to spend liming with the community I would fall into an anti-work mode. However, after about three weeks of small events and parties of every kind I am more than ready to get back to working.
Christmas in St. Lucia was quite different. Normally I would be working up until Christmas eve, if not Christmas day. Here, however, schools and NGOs get out around the 12th of December. We have a few events in honor of Christmas tradition such as parties and gift baskets to make but most of the holiday is devoted to spending quality time with friends and family. I love St. Lucian holidays!
Working with members of Club 60, I helped put together hampers for Christmas. In these hampers, we placed household goods including but not limited to: detergent, soap, rice, baking powder, sugar, flour, candies, juices, and etc.. In order to get 60 baskets to use and have enough supplies for all 60 baskets we had to go from store to store looking for the items. Fortunately, I did not have to go around shopping for the items because being a PCV, I am carless and would be absolutely no help in the shopping department. So instead, I helped with organizing the baskets and getting them filled, wrapped, and prepared for the following Monday. We had a formal give-away day, in which the representative from The Landings was there to help give the hampers out. Frank Weeks is the representative from The Landings. They fund a lot of the activities and projects for Grow Well. Club 60 is one of these funded projects. Club 60, as I have briefly talked about before on my blogs, is a program for helping to keep the retired active within the community. The hampers will be an annual event from now on! The Landings will also be helping to fund the after-school programs that I am working on as we speak. Thank you Landings!
It was a pleasure to have been able to finally meet and greet with most of the Club 60 members. Each of them have a very sweet and compassionate character. I love each and every one of their smiles! Not to mention their fascinating personalities...with loads of humor. I am hoping to work more and more with Club 60 in the future.
I took part in a few other events such as a Youth Expo in Soufriere working with kids in arts and crafts with a PCV from Soufriere. We taught the kids how to make bracelets from thread...most of them enjoyed it thoroughly. It was nice to see even the boys walk out of the classroom wearing what they made from that day and being so darn proud of the final result!
I am so thankful Hallie offered me a place to help out that day!
Over the holiday, I did start to miss the kids that I work with at the primary and CARE. Something about getting to see them on a daily basis makes my work feel meaningful. Their hugs and excitement everytime they see me lets me know that I am here for a good purpose; for these kids. I know that I am just one little granule in the overall scheme of their lives but I am faithful that one little granule can make even the slightest difference in the color or texture of the whole pot. I am ecstatic that school is started up again!
During my time "off", I took part in a few hikes as well. Mt. Gimie and the across the island rainforest trail were the prominent ones. Look for part 3/3, I will be talking about these hikes.