Sunday, September 11, 2011


The church parking lot was quiet, with a few cars parked here and there next to the sanctuary. I know everyone will arrive soon, so I embrace the few minutes of quiet sitting alone in the car reading. A sense of disconnectedness creep up as I stare out into the void of morning grays.  I let it go, focusing a refreshing sense of peace in corners of my mind.

Sound of cars soon broke through the morning silence.  I step out to see Carina, Lynda and others walking towards the van.  We load boxes of school supplies until the cargo area is filled.  Between loading trips, I pause, and hear the sleepy silence again, mingled in the cool morning air, like chilled 7-up poured over ice.

I can't see the stars right now, and the moon looks pale.  I remember their brilliance, however, on that blacked out night.  They shone against the velvety night sky, as I lay under thick blankets in stretched out lounge chairs by the pool staring back at them, mesmerized.  Trees pitched their branches high, their silhouette menacing, as if in protest of being overshadowed.  But even they softened as my lids grew heavy, turning into dancers posing against a dimly lit set of stage curtains.  Neighborhood block parties went on around us, so we didn't feel completely alone.  But the magic and wonders of a starlit sky outweighed everything that night, pulling me close into an embrace, and only letting me go on a tether of silvery light.  To eyes and hearts that are open, something magnificent appeared that night, with more brilliance than all the power combined from all the generators on our tiny blue planet.

350 backpacks for 350 children - fishes and loaves
"Can we join hands?"  Marjolene asked as we finish loading both the cargo and our own supplies for the day.  We comply in a circle and listened to the lyrical prayer bounce off the gray world of concrete and stucco, catching light and fanning out a rainbow of possibilities.  The day ahead is long and filled with dry heat, but I know I will sprinkle everything with tears that cool my scorching face.  I will douse doubts and complaints in my heart with smiles of gratification seeing children lined up to receive their fall school supplies.  I remember their faces from past trips, but I never tire of seeing them again.  Their joy, always abundant and unabashed, never fails to spill over onto me, in songs and claps, in whispers and hugs, in simple words and big smiles, like seven up poured over ice, buzzing with thirst quenching explosions.

So it was with anticipation and excitement we finally set off into the direction of Centro Shalom Mexico.  The road will be bumpy, but all I see are sweet smiles of success, already.


  1. I loved the imagery in this, and your description is beautiful. Lovely post.

  2. Your writing, your descriptions are always spot-on. Your words are as glorious and beautiful as the starlit night you've described. :)

  3. well written.
    The lines are beautiful. You set the scenes pretty well in all colors for the reader.:)

  4. There is nothing giving, especially to someone who is so grateful and pure as a child in need. We have so much and so many parts of the world have but a grain of rice. Always love to read your stories

  5. rewrite, there is nothing like Giving......I need an editor even to write comments, hahaha

  6. What a great mission, thanks for sharing.

  7. Wow, I've been out of the blogosphere for way to long! This is a lovely post, and I hope you have an tough/fulfilling time in Mexico!

  8. Shopgirl- You are so generous, in your writing and in your deeds. Go and love those children--you'll bring them the such joy! Smiling hearts all around. :)

  9. I absolutely loved the imagery and description in this piece. It was beautifully written and phrased. Vay a con Dios (Go with God) as you and your friends spread love in Mexico.

  10. Sweet and beautiful. I am carried away by your words.

  11. Thank you all for your encouragements. Welcome back Dani and Jayne (from summer?).

    The Tame Lion - thanks and welcome!

    Melee - You are too kind with your words. You are a beautiful writer yourself

    Robbie - I wish I can write half as much as you seem to be lately.

    Bth - I always look forward to your posts. Words have been scarce lately so perhaps reading you all will help me find my way back.

    Kirsten - Thank you for teaching me that phrase. I will.

    Nessa - Your imagination in your stories often takes me away too.

  12. Your empathy and gentleness shine through in your words... I enjoyed this piece very much, especially the 7up motif. :)

  13. The beauty with which you write is clearly born of the beauty within your heart




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