A Day in Haikus

by Sydney ’17 

The day started out like any other: breakfast and then waiting for a truck to come pick us up. Today’s destination: ­Floro Perez, the third Quaker church in Cuba, where Roxy’s dad, Alexis, is the pastor. The truck ride was long and bumpy, which we’ve gotten used to by now.

The truck hits a bump

My booty left the metal

I flew then I fell

We arrived at the church with hugs and kisses from Alexis and Roxy’s mom, Mily. Although we’ve never exchanged words, I feel like they’re my Cuban parents. This church is the smallest that we’ve visited, consisting of little more than four wooden benches. They offered us watermelon and melon juice (served in plastic bags!) to cool us off before we started our dance lesson. Mily had invited a dance teacher named Julia, who was determined to see us dance/make fools of ourselves. We graciously accepted the challenge and tried our hardest to master some basic step-and-touch Cuban dance moves. An hour later we were hot, exhausted, and maybe, just maybe, a little better at dancing.

The Cuban music

How it makes us want to dance

We so wish we could

Next we ate a delicious meal of chicken and rice before Tom suggested we play some table tennis. We traveled next door to the public rec center that had two ping-pong tables. While Holdyn and Brayden took turns challenging Alexis (a success on Brayden’s part, but not on Holdyn’s), Tom realized that we only had two paddles. Being the martyr that I am, I offered up my Birkenstocks, and Isaiah and Tom assured me that they make excellent paddles.

If one lacks paddles

Consider using a shoe

Firmer is better

It was clear that today the heat and constant activity finally caught up with us. By the time we left Floro Perez, half of us were asleep. The minute we got back to church, the Annas, Selah, Seterah, and I passed out for an hour and a half.

A siesta is bliss

Americans should nap more

I feel so refreshed

After a groggy awakening, we moved out to Melissa’s house for dinner. Melissa will be joining us as a junior at GS next year, and her parents treated us to a delicious dinner at their house. Their home is on a hill overlooking Holguin, so we spent most of the evening on their balcony looking at the city we’ve been living in for almost a week. After Richard led us in a prayer, we had dinner, which consisted of imperial rice, pizza, and kebabs, and desert was a two-tiered chocolate cake with the words “Welcome George School” written in icing. We spent the evening eating, listening to music, and talking. Thomas, Isaiah, and Anna C. took advantage of the house’s speakers to blast some Bob Dylan, while Jake and Owen kept up a joke about one-hit wonders for two hours.

The view of Holguin

Music, food, jokes, and good friends

What a lovely night

Instead of heading back to the church at 9:00 p.m., we went to Holguin’s performing arts center to support our new friend, Yasmeen, in her dance recital. None of us really knew why there was a dance recital at 9:00 p.m., but Yasmeen blew us all away.

I saw something new:

A musical of snow white

By Cuban toddlers



Filed under Service, Students

2 responses to “A Day in Haikus

  1. Joanne Sterns

    What an experience you are having!!!
    I am thrilled for you. Love you JoJo
    Can’t wait to hear details when you get home.

  2. Leslie

    Sounds awesome Syd!

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