Today my peers and us learned abut the everyday struggles and activities of families who live off of nearly $1 dollar each day. We learned the different roles of each family member and the tasks they perform to benefit the entire family. For example, many women had the responsibility of washing clothes and making food, like tortillas and beans. Other tasks include, fishing and cleaning the family’s house. Though everyone had different families and houses, everybody agreed that the lives of the individuals in the community were both simple and complex in many ways. The families were free from many of the stresses of an everyday American, but in that place was the stress of supporting the whole family with only local resources and no job to supply a stream of income. People had no concern of materialism or the typical thoughts that comfort an American (money, clothes, success, status, etc). However, they focuses solely on their families, community and the unity of their people.
What surprised us most about today was the feeling of the locals toward their own lifestyles. Sure, they have lived like that for longer than we , but their overall acceptance of being separate from materialistic values like flashy clothing or fast cars was highly respectable. They truly loved their surroundings and lifestyle and even though they don’t have much they are content with living the way that they do. Being from a highly materialistic culture, seeing people who didn’t follow those same customs was a truly different experience.
Even though everyone was extremely tired from Fun Day yesterday, we were proud to see that everyone participated. I heard about people washing clothes on rocks, burning their hands making tortillas, and being commended on their cooking skills. Also, later during English classes it was amazing to see people who were more reserved participating in their classes. It was great to see so many people coming out of their shells.
Unfortunately families, out of respect for the families we visited today, we did not take pictures.
We miss you all dearly!
-Chloe R & Jessica S.