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Monday
Jan232012

Waves of Change

It is day number 15 of my journey, and, as usual, there’s not a cloud in the sky or a care in the world as locals and visitors stroll the nearly vacant beach. This is a typical lazy day in La Manzanilla, where a snails pace is often too fast for the local lifestyle, but there is one small thing that I notice makes this day different from the rest. As I sit on the beach starring out at the ocean, looking for nothing other than a suntan, I feel a light mist dust my skin, as though Mother Nature has just lent me her personal supply of Evian Spray. It is not until this moment that I look around to see the source of this welcomed refreshment and see the size of the waves crashing in front of me. They are coming in with force today, larger and stronger than I have seen them before. They are rising to such heights before they break that I can see right through them, like a looking glass onto the ocean floor. I notice how slowly they appear to be rolling in, moving at about the same speed and with the same urgency as this sleepy seniors’ town. But within an instant of reaching their peak, (barely enough time for me to scan them for sharks) they come crashing down, releasing all the energy that brought them here. One word comes to mind, “ruidoso”, and I smile to myself for getting the opportunity to use this newly acquired word. It means “loud or noisy” and I learned it last night while trying to describe the Mexican rock band that was performing at the local open mic night.

               After watching the waves crash onto the shore for a few minutes I decide to venture in to wet my feet. I am surprised at the force of the tide in the ankle deep water and realize that I am bracing myself each time the tide pulls these giant waves back into the ocean and nearly takes me with it. It is then that I realize that my constant companion is still at my feet and I am suddenly angry at the ocean for its attempted double kidnapping of myself and my dog! I retreat and continue to marvel from afar when I realize how metaphorically perfect the pattern of the waves are to describe my journey.

            Like the waves, the process of getting here was long and drawn out, eight months of pushing papers back and forth between the foundation and the university to be exact (I am doing my final practicum for a Masters of Teaching degree). During this stage I gathered everything I could – resources, skills, materials and knowledge – everything I could get my hands on. Eventually, and seemingly suddenly, it was time. I could feel the anticipation building as my first day approached. Unfortunately, unlike the waves, there was no moment of clarity or looking glass into my future. Before I knew it, my first day arrived and this time it was exactly like the crashing waves in two distinct ways; it was full of energy and it was ruidoso! And then quickly and quietly everything settled down and I was brought ashore, ahem, aboard and given a gentle push in the direction of my new home.

            Now, just a few short weeks into my volunteer experience, I am reminded that before long I will again feel that powerful force pulling me out to my next journey.

It is amazing the clarity these lazy days can bring, and now that I have it, I think I’ll get back to my cerveza.

~Lacey

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Reader Comments (1)

This lovely post reminded me of my days doing volunteer work in South America with UK charities. It is truly an incredible thing to do and your words made me picture for an instant some of those amazing days I spent in the orphanage, on the beach and in the jungle.

April 24, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterUK charities

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