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Many Adventures of a Nomadic Poet A young poet with Asperger's makes travel his passion, and away he goes...

Thunder is Loud!

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC | Saturday, 16 June 2012 | Views [1437]

Last night it was so difficult sleeping! Dogs were barking all night. I expected this place to be totally quiet but this morning I was angry at dogs in general! Exhausted I was at 7 AM when I was awoken for breakfast. Even though we weren't working at the site today it's officially the beginning of the project! For breakfast I had bacon and braised potatoes with a cup of coffee. We had to being along our water bottle, sunscreen, and all that so I got my stuff ready whilst we were passed out our ISV T-shirts. Falling asleep briefly on the way to Caraballo I woke up to us driving down a gravel road with tall grass on either side of us. With Haitians walking on the side of the road I felt like I was deep in Central Africa. Speaking of, that's an idea for my next journey; I'm going to put the name of every African country into a hat, and whichever one I pull out is where I'm going. When we arrived at Caraballo I wanted to cry! The children smile excitedly at our presence yet they have so little. And this is a community far removed from the rest of the area. It was awkward when I told people in Santo Domingo that I was volunteering in Caraballo they all said "Where?" Whilst many in "La Capital" can go out to clubs, and eat at Tony Roma's, many of the little boys and girls here have never even been to the beach! It's awfully hot but my heart and soul are going into this project. When you look at what's been built already you'd never believe this was a rubbish dump only a few years ago. The library we're building is going to be a reinforced brick structure. A steel structure was built only a couple of years ago but in Dave's words it's a "pressure cooker." The DR is very hurricane-prone so a steel structure would get blown away like cardboard. I'm sad that I won't have enough time to visit Haiti but I can see here that Haitians are very proud and dignified and it'll be a real honour to visit their country someday. In our ISV shirts we had a meeting beneath the steel frame we'll be tearing down starting in a couple of days.

It was very hot and humid but Dave told us to be ready to carry cinder blocks, get dirty, and be sweaty. Today we only spent two hours at Caraballo but it's a real eye-opener and the people are extremely proud of the community's progress. It was a delight stepping onto the air-conditioned bus after standing outside in a steambath. I needed a nap and we were ready to head back to the lodge but not without stopping at every other colmado in search of phones or phone cards. For me it's rather rare to call home whilst travelling, but for most of the rest it's their first time outside of the U.S. or Canada and as a result their family worries about them. I tell friends and family "I'll talk to you on Facebook, call you when I can, or see you when I get home." We had burgers for lunch before I lay down for a long nap. Teo woke me when it was time for a mandatory meeting. Courtney and Amy went over what's expected of us and what we expect of them. The skies greyed and then there was a massive torrential downpour!

Since our huts aren't totally enclosed I had to wrap all my gear in plastic. Thunder was crashing loud and I was soaked. When it rains it pours! I was enjoying it, and others were too

And here I am enjoying it, even though I'm soaked

Storms in the DR typically don't last long but when they start churning, they sure churn up a storm! As long as I don't get struck by lightning and if it's warm, I'm out there, singing and dancing away. Our beds were slightly wet and the internet was down for a couple of hours but other than that there were no problems. Lightning, with the view we have, is a really spectacular show here. Think of it as like a giant movie screen, only a million times its size. Cracks of lightning reminiscent of the Arizona desert light up the sky, reminding us of how small we are compared to mother nature. It would eventually dry up enough and we'd have dinner without the thunder! Out of the 26 of us there are only four men (Aaron, Jace, Teo, and myself). Aaron is here with his girlfriend, Teo swings the other way, and Jace admits he's never felt attracted to anyone, so in a way I feel advantageous but in a way I don't because I love someone already. In any case my top priority is the project; building as best I can and working with the children as best I can! It would be windy tonight but no rain; the wind sounds nice as I try to sleep and keeps the mosquitoes at bay.

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