05 July 2007

Nicaragua: Chinandega, Managua

5 de julio 2007 Chinandega Managua
they got up. Justin was as fresh as a daisy. we couldn’t believe it.
while waiting for the truck, we had a fascinating conversation with a few of the students’ chaperones, one of whom left Nicaragua in 1983. Martin had never thought of leaving Nicaragua to go to the States like many of his family wanted. he didn’t even get a passport until he saw his father being carted away by the Sandanista government for having “too much money in his pocket.” they held his father for a week, and Martin decided he didn’t want to stay in a country that would do that. it was a very different accounting of that time than others we had heard.
we piled into the ambulance with Marieling, Luiz, Dania, Patty (how is it that she was even standing?) H (forgot her name, darnit!) and Justin. best conversations of the trip:
• Luiz and others getting into a very interested discussion about the possible applications of pumping systems
• Justin talking about his own motivations for doing work with A4C, which became an interesting comparison of doing Christ’s work v. evangelism. he talked at length, and very movingly i might add, that his relationship with God was his motivation for doing this work, but he didn’t expect everyone else to feel the same. it is not something one can coerce another to feel. Anna and i were both impressed with both his eloquence and his unwavering, unconditional faith.
• Dania and i talking.
Anna and i talked later about this missionary fervor. it’s interesting that non-religious NGOs focus on the “what”, while religious NGOs focus on the “why”. A4C, for example, has a long, unwavering vision that is deeply rooted in a faith that its donors and participants share. John was very forthcoming in describing the mistakes or incorrect assumptions they’ve made, but these mistakes have not stifles him. they have guided their focus and direction, rather than requiring, in some situations, an evaluation of the mission itself as would often happen in a secular nonprofit. both seem right. which is more effective?
got to the Quaker House, foraged for food at Snack Las Brisas which didn’t have rice and beans but did have gallop into, then went back to crash for an hour before meeting with Jaime. WHO ROCKS! talked about the solar umps, micro hydro systems, and the communities (won’t elaborate on this, as i assume Anna can better than i). he was even gracious enough to take the “Sondeo . . .” book home with him to look at it. after talks and some phone calls, came up with a game plan to meet with the Canadian Embassy, CARE Intl, and the Ministry of Energy. Caroline came in and mentioned the Solidarity Conference that NicaNet was putting on the next weekend, and we considered doing this, as well. ponder ponder ponder.
Anna and i were HUNGRY. we shoelace the street near the supermarket area until we found a GREAT fritanga. it was so clean that the lady actually put a condom on the tongs when not using it. i will miss that place when we leave. have come to learn that when one finds a good fritanga, one must grasp it with both hands.

No comments: