Today we started off by waking up at 6:00 am then proceeding to wake up our fellow glimpsers at 6:30am. We played Where the Wind Blows for our energizer and had breakfast at 7:15 am. After breakfast, we took out the cookie dough that was prepared yesterday. We rolled out the cookie dough on trays, cut out shapes, and baked them. We then made icing for the cookies with merengue powder, tartar powder, water, and sugar. After the icing was finished, we frosted the freshly baked, warm sugar cookies.
We had lunch at 12:00 pm and ate a Dominican “bandera” which consisted of beans, salad, rice, and chicken (it was delicious by the way). As we were digesting our delicious food we began to prepare for our special guests of the day who were to individuals who were from a Haitian community from the outskirts of Constanza. Around 2:00 pm we started the activity of the day by watching a documentary on the Haitian-Dominican immigration/citizenship crisis of recent years. We finished the documentary and we began to converse with our Haitian guests, Ramon and Enel. They both immigrated to the DR in search for better lives, leaving families behind in Haiti. We learned so much regarding the hardships of being a person born in the Dominican from non-Dominican parents and/or being a Haitian immigrant in the Dominican Republic. After the Q & A with our guests, we enjoyed the sugar cookies we made in the morning with our guests, sending 2 boxes home with them to share with their community.
Something we found surprising from our immigration day today was hearing how hard our guests work, just to live day to day. They went through long, bureaucratic processes to jet legal papers that took about four years, all while they were learning Spanish (they speak 4 languages, by the way: Creole, French, English and Spanish.) Some connections we made with our guests were that we realized that almost all of us are the children or grandchildren of immigrants and we realized that their situation could easily happen to us, especially with this political climate.
Around 4:50 pm, our delegation had our first explore time outside the two free days. There was a flea market in town which was fun for some Glimpsers. However, most of the stores were closed because it was Sunday and Dominicans are very Catholic and take their days of rest very seriously. After exploring the surroundings of Dilenia’s Hotel we returned to the hotel to write letters and do our self-reflections. We had dinner at 7:15 pm, and after a nightly meeting, we prepare for lights out.