Skip to main content

Faces of Los Laureles

don't let the halo fool you.
an angel he is not.
little mateo is kind of a brat.
and the only vocabulary he seems to be able to manage is variations on spanish curse words.
this one still isn't growing on me.
he does call me papi though.
papi might have to do some disciplining here in the near future.
ok, these people are not from laureles.
but i liked the photo.
taken by tati.
soplo and manuel after a soccer game.
both, in their own way, think they're too cool for school.
it's been my mission to teach them otherwise.

here's a kid that thinks he's from laureles, acts like he's from here, spends all of his time here.
but he's not
william lives down the highway in a nice home with a stable family that has steady and reliable employment.
he discovered our soccer team last year, joined, became a star forward for the u-14 team and slowly began making friends here.
to the point now where he practically lives here.
sometimes he stays so late that his mother has to physically come and chase him back to their house.
he's a good kid with a good heart though.
some of our high school group has been struggling in their classes.
what else is new.
last year we had organized tutoring for the kids with our youth from church.
we don't have that luxury this year.
what we do have is girlfriend and her willingness to come out twice a week and help the most desperate.
melvin is so grateful
oh duke.
i could go on forever about duke.
i shan't.
i will say that in every way, be it on the soccer field or in the classroom or in his personal/spiritual life i see growth and a deepening maturity.
i'm truly hopeful for this one.

finally there's anuar.
funny how life goes aroud in cycles.
3 years ago anuar was the first child i befriended here in los laureles.
he went everywhere with me.
he was my door to meeting other kids, exploring the community, developing contacts with adults.
and then we kind of drifted apart.
he was always there - just not in the intense way he was for the first 6 months.
more recently and now that we're neighbors he's back in my life again in a profound way.
he's at the house all day, helps in whatever project we're invloved in and always involved in the conversations here.
i'm a big fan of anuar.
and he grinds a mean coffee mill.


Popular posts from this blog

Coming to Honduras

The other day in philosophy class I was teaching about existentialism, a philosophy with which I have myriad problems. The universe is absurd, life is meaningless, authenticate yourself with irrational leaps of faith! Hopeless and disconnected from reality if you ask me. Get out of the café Camus, mix with some common folk! Nevertheless, as I was introducing the material I mentioned that the existentialists really probed the questions of Life's meaning and purpose:

"How do I create myself to be unique and significant?" "How do I live an authentic existence?" "How do I give my life meaning and purpose in an otherwise meaningless universe?"
These seem to be questions that are attendant to societies that possess extreme wealth and privilege and an over-abundance of leisure time. I have serious doubts that 15th Century English peasants or even nobles for that matter, spent much time contemplating how they might make their lives unique or leave a significa…

Art Day

I've been forced into an "art-day" by Girlfriend; against my better judgement I've decided to turn to the only medium that I'm remotely skilled at. It's been far too long since I've written anything of worth and as I sit here, pondering my lack of output in the last 4 years, I'm left wondering if I have anything substantial left to offer to "The Conversation". I think I did once, when my integrity and identity were intact and people were genuinely curious about my life here. For reasons too numerous to count though, not the least of which is my own retreat from reflective thought put down on paper, I can't shake the feeling that I've lost the ability to speak and be heard. Girlfriend and I are reading a book about marriage together given to me by my sister; we take turns reading it aloud to the other and as salient points are read we often stop and discuss our thoughts. Thus far it's been a fairly blithe and carefree romp through…

10 Years In Honduras

My good friend Jessiel Rivera reminded me the other day that it was 10 years ago this month that I arrived here in La Ceiba. I remember my arrival here from Costa Rica fairly vividly. I had been getting teary-eyed on the plane from a combination of sleep deprivation, my longing to remain with my friends in beautiful San Jose and some sad indie music on my iPod. It was a hot and terribly humid Sunday afternoon when I landed in the La Ceiba airport and when I stepped off the 10-seater hotbox of an airplane onto the tarmac I was sweaty, bleary-eyed and disheveled. I looked like a typical gringo backpacker except for my mountain of luggage that I had in tow. Two members of the Central Mennonite Church picked me up in their car; how they knew I was the Gringo they were supposed to collect was beyond me but they got it right. I remember them remarking on the number of suitcases I had brought (3) and their heaviness (maximum weight allowance); and the resulting weight of embarrassment I felt…