Hola a todos!!
As most of you know by now I will be leaving on February 8th to spend 6 weeks in the town of Berlín in Usulután, El Salvador. There I will be teaching English in a local school and a community class, and trying to gain a better understanding of the school system. I will be able to work on my Spanish language skills, learn more about the town of Berlín, and eat beans every day! Most importantly, I will be spending time with some of the most loving and generous people I have ever met. It is truly a blessing to be received into a community with open arms and open hearts. The happiness and hopefulness of the people never ceases to amaze me, especially when they are faced with tremendous social and economic injustice. I hope their kindness and positive thinking will rub off on me, and that I will be able to bring a part of that joy back to the US with me.
That brings me to the point of this email. It has been requested by several people that I keep a blog while I’m in El Salvador. There I’ll write about my experiences in Berlín, share any interesting stories, and upload photos. I’ll be sure to include the food pictures that I’m famous for. You can find my blog at http://alilorraine.blogspot.com. The name of my blog is in memory of my dad, who called me Ali Lorraine and always encouraged me to travel and create my own adventures.
As for organizing my pictures when I return, I’ll just have to wait and see how many pictures I have before I attempt a scrapbook. My theory/hope is that each time I go down I’ll be able to take fewer pictures, thus avoiding redundancy, but we shall see if that actually happens. I think this trip should count as an exception since I’ll be gone for more than a week.
I’d also encourage you to take a look at the website of Our Sister Parish, which is the organization responsible for the partnership with and mission trips to El Salvador. There you can find the history of the mission, the mission co-worker’s blog, church delegations that go down, and Don Justo coffee information. The church I go down with, Westminster Presbyterian, partners with the canton of San Francisco. The website is http://www.oursisterparish.org/
I hope everyone is doing well during this winter season and people don’t have too much of the post-holiday season blues.