Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Thoughts, at last :)

The difficulty with beginning a blog just as I embark on a tour of 4 countries in Africa, Lebanon, and the Philippines, is that once I've returned home there just doesn't seem to be the same excitement to write about. Of course, random exciting things always happen, but how to compare a weekend in Paris to my first taste of Nigerian food. Or how can I possibly compare taking pictures with Hezbollah in Lebanon to my daily life in the office in NY? This is my life, the travels are exciting, the people are incredible, and every day I wake up and come to work... same as everyone else.

Beirut, Lebanon

New Brunswick, Canada

Road Trip! NY

Soapsuds in a fountain in Paris!

So, brief update, we started with a new batch of interns 3 weeks ago. The interns are from the USA, Canada, Philippines, and Mexico. They're a lot of fun! Normally there is a period of relative calm after interns arrive, they're all kind of nervous, thrown into a new city with new people and new experiences, and they all want to make a good impression. This batch was somewhat unique... First day, they were all
volunteering to work, were going out shopping with each other and in fact quite loud. I don't think it helped that the night before their first day of work Phil (the International Director of Operations) and I took them out to a nearby pub :) Culture of dignity requires an EXPERIENCE of dignity, right?

The week after they arrived I flew to Mexico for the weekend, at this point you all roll your eyes and say "yeah, right, I thought her life became boring after all her travels?" ok, so I still travel, I've just already been to most of these countries so they're no longer exotic :) Back to Mexico, our members in Queretaro organised a huge youth conference by the title De Mente Joven. In spanish this means "take action youth," in English I know what your thinking, demented youth is not what we advocate is it? This conference was incredible, most of our members in Queretaro are in highschool and the conference had 4,000 participants. Pretty impressive for a group of highschool students to organise a conference with local celebrities, a band - the backstreet boys of Mexico, and of course, WYA!

Since then, we've all been settling in. I've given the interns all multiple projects so all the work that's needed to get done for months is getting done, I love interns! Two are monitoring the UN, one is working on an International Film Festival for '08, one is working on international conferences to commemorate our 10 year anniversary in '09, one is working on HIV/AIDS conferences and prep, bioethics research, university campus groups, monitoring online members' training, developing a brochure, press articles, CityAdventure in NY this Nov., etc. Haha, and the best part is that usually some of the interns really struggle with doing their projects well, these interns have so much initiative that I sometimes struggle just to keep up with all they are doing. Plus, of course this is all taking place in one office, did I mention we have 4 more?

So my life is busy, lots is getting done, progress is being made, and I even find time to play ultimate frisbee :) I spoke at a conference on Social Justice and Poverty two weeks ago at St. John's University. The professor who introduced me read my bio, all the usual bio "accomplishments" blah blah blah, then he cracked himself up and said "I think the most remarkable aspect of the young lady about to speak, is that on top of everything else she has accomplished she is so talented she plays a sport with a name as fierce as, Ultimate Frisbee!" Of course the entire room cracked up, and my incredibly intellectual opening lines were useless, so I told a story instead...

Ok, enough news for one go, this has got to be information overload after months of silence...

A picture of my family, extended version :)

1 comment:

Irene said...

I love the family photo!reminds me of home!