Today we woke up at 7:30 to be ready for breakfast at 8. Angie, Ike, Courtney, Sarah, Illeabeth, Priya, and I’s day started off with carrying 270 boxes of bibles into the church. I was so glad that there were a lot of hands to help with the lifting as it allowed it to go by a lot faster than if there were fewer hands. Once those were all in the church, Ike, Angie, Priya, and I switched with those the that were previously working on the roof, mixing cement. Our group worked until lunch, filling buckets with sand and gravel to be dumped in the cement mixer.
Afterward, we had a lunch of rice and beans with chicken, tomatoes, plantain chips, and so many desserts. There was cake and ice cream and cookies and more cake, Lianet gave us so so many options, it was amazing. Then after lunch, we all showered and got ready for our final walk around Holguin.
Originally we were all together but split up to venture around the plazas. Angie and I walked to a department store where I bought a shirt that says Cuba. Later we walked to a small market were she almost bought a painting but decided to save her money for more ice cream. We went to the little ice cream shop where I only drank a bottle of water while Angie ate her ice cream. Around 2:25 we headed back to the plaza to meet up with our sponsors to go back to the church.
For about 5 hours until dinner many of us sat around entertaining ourselves while dinner was made. Later, we had imperial rice, plantain chips, fried sweat plantains, tomatoes, sweet potato chips. After, we all walked to Lianet’s house and played around with her son until around 10.
We’ve had a great time here and have grown so much. We understand so much more about the world.
These are our biggest takeaways from Cuba.
Angie: Happiness isn’t linked to what we want but rather what we have.
Maddie: There is more to life than the internet.
Alice: Travel with a mindset of self improvement.
Courtney: Happiness comes more easily than we think.
Miranda: Don’t let the lack of job security stop you from perusing your dream.
JoceLynn: Happiness is in the experience not in the objects around us.
Annarose: It is possible to understand people even when you don’t understand what they said.
Priya: Taking yourself out of your situation and comfort zone can help you see the others
Ike: No matter where you go, people are fundamentally the same everywhere.
Eric: Look around, observe, and appreciate what is around you.
Ahmed: find happiness and gratitude in the small things in life and you will never be bored.
Aaron: Simplicity is often the ultimate road to happiness.
Sara: Things are often so much more complicated than they first appear. It is in going out and seeking our own truth that we open ourselves to the world and in return, the world opens itself to us.
Ileabeth: Cuba is such a beautiful country, and its people always fill me with joy and so many life lessons. May we never forget that the simple things in life is what brings us joy. Hasta la victoria siempre, Cuba!