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

The Last Day

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC | Thursday, 28 June 2012 | Views [644]

Sadly, it would be our last day on the project. Today was emotional, it really was. And I'm glad I did construction on our last day. It was a day I felt I had to be on my ultimate best, even though I've been so the entire project. Compared to the other days it was a rather easy day on the construction site. We picked up leaves, swept the area, and mostly cleaned up whilst the local guys assembled the roof, mostly from the tin from the old building. Look at our progress:

Two weeks ago:

Today:

I'm amazed and impressed at the progress we all made in just two weeks! For a group of young people with little to no construction experience we were beasts at getting this work done! My only regret is that I won't be here for the remainder of the work: installing the windows and the door, and painting the building. When we were done for the day it was so difficult saying goodbye to all the children. Aaron gave away his ISV shirt and Jace gave away his trademark orange hat (tonight it was awkward seeing him without it. Weekly awards were given to the children just like last week. As the bus pulled away I shed a tear. I'm really going to miss everyone! This project has had a lasting impact on me! Sometimes I think about how expensive it is and I wonder if it could somehow be cheaper but that doesn't matter right now. Tonight at dinner, we presented Jackie and her staff a thank you card and then Teo announced the "paper plate awards." He didn't really give us a paper plate but said a little about each of us. He described me as "Swiftsaw" and that I'm one of the hardest workers and "your favourite nighttime storyteller." Furthermore, he described Janine as "Mother Goose," Cheta as "Black Thunder," and Torrie as the "Dreamcatcher." He had a little something to say for everyone, and then for him I read his out loud. Everyone got a kick out of what was written about him! Then Janine had something special to say about me. On the back of a postcard, she wrote "Dear Chris, It certainly has been quite the experience! I am so glad I stuck it out here because we all really made a difference. I think you are really brave and you have a lot to offer this world Chris. You're very intelligent and I've enjoyed hearing your stories about your adventures. It was really great meeting you. I hope you keep travelling (but no more hitchhiking!). Hearing 'Miss Janine Gorgeous' every morning has brought a warm feeling to my heart. You will always be my hero for removing the bugs. Keep in Touch, Janine <3" It brought a tear and a great big smile to my face! As a toast to an amazing project we went out for a few drinks afterward. I had a few Cuba Libres and spin myself around, dancing the night away until I was dizzy, and then I danced some more. Sad I am tonight. This project was amazing but I'm going to miss the children, the gorgeous view, the lodge, and everyone I've met. Things I won't miss are the heat, humidity, mosquitoes, and constant barking of the dogs. This project is finished for now, but I shall begin another soon!

After reading all my entries from this wonderful project, I hope I've inspired all of you to perform some volunteer work. It doesn't matter how much it costs, and it doesn't have to be with ISV. Think of the difference you'll be making when you're pouring your heart and soul into it! Although I encourage everyone to volunteer in a foreign country, you can volunteer in your own neighbourhood. Volunteer options abound at nursing homes, homeless shelters, schools, libraries, YMCAs, and so forth. As Jace said a few weeks ago, we were given something far more valuable than money. We were given experiences, life skills, friendships, and lots of good times! Don't think of volunteering, just do it! 

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