Posts Tagged ‘Go Fund Me’

Strength in Numbers

Monday, December 14th, 2015

Humans are such social creatures. We rely on one another for meaning and purpose. Without the relief and tension of togetherness, we atrophy.

Many of us find creativity and solace in solitude; yet, this context has its limitations and we reach them quickly. We need the laughter, the disappointment, the play of friendship. We need the tension, the confusion, the righteousness of antagonism. We need partnership to alleviate the burden and companionship to eliminate the loneliness.

 

Jai and Dejanira make tortillas together

Jai and Dejanira make tortillas together

 

Brady, the master chef, oversees the tortilla production

Brady, the master chef, oversees the tortilla production

 

Right now Brennan and Rubi are playing a game of chess. After each one takes a turn on the board, they get a turn using my iPhone to What’s App message family and friends. Entertainment with purpose. Multi-tasking connection.

Outside my third floor bedroom window, there is a tree. The tree itself is nondescript and unimpressive. The life that inhabits it is worthy of longterm gazing. I first noticed a nest on a high branch as the mama bird landed there to feed her babies. The only way I knew that babies were in the nest was the fluffy feathers peeking over the top of the perfectly camouflaged nest. After gazing for sometime at the tree, I realized that many varieties of birds can be found hopping from branch to branch, and in the case of the hummingbird, dive bombing, then returning.

 

Hummingbird in action. This is our backyard.

Hummingbird in action. This is our backyard.

 

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Some of them are in pairs, some solo, some with babies and some without. They are all occupying the same tree. Some appear to always return the same branch, some seek variety.

 

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Stationary hummingbird

 

I wonder if they find comfort in one another’s presence. A sense of belonging. A sense of security. A routine and patterns that bring predictability to an otherwise chaotic world. Perhaps they rejoice in one another’s company, find inspiration in the varied flight and sound.

I wonder if the presence of the other birds is annoying to them. Too noisy. What strange songs the others sing! What odd manner in which they fetch their insects to eat!

Do they question why the other birds chose that branch? Criticize the manner in which they clean their beaks by rubbing it from side to side? Maybe they wish that just once, they could have the tree to themselves and then finally, all would be well.

Last night I attended a large community party. It was organized by a woman in Mindo named Marjorie. She organized a fundraiser with dancing, live music, a DJ and a bar. The proceeds go to help a woman named Sandra, and her son Uriel, who was diagnosed with leukemia.

 

Marjorie (the organizer of the event) took a pause long enough for a selfie.

Marjorie (the organizer of the event) took a pause long enough for a selfie.

 

The event was held in “la cancha”, the community center constructed solely from concrete. The “field” is concrete and the “bleachers” are concrete.  Outside it was raining, and probably 76 degrees. The high concrete walls prevented the humid air from moving. The smell of beer, cigarette smoke, cologne and damp bodies filled the air.

Some dogs braved the crowd, standing in the middle of the dance floor as if they wished to find a partner. One very dark skinned boy stood on a 10 foot concrete post and danced, solo. There were about 150 or 200 people there by the end of the night. Hardly anyone looked at their phones. The vast majority of people danced. Much alcohol was consumed and I saw many familiar and friendly faces from the town of Mindo. The role of music, dance and alcohol were prominent.

When community comes together, it lightens the load. The money raised will help buy medication to save a boy’s life. Additionally, the people of the town feel supported. They have partnership in one another. I listened to one man talk about how he wished there were more people there (early in the night). He had bought all the beer and donated it to the “bar” at the event. By the end of the night he remarked that there were “mucha gente aqui!” I tried to explain the principle of abundance in Spanish. “¡Nunca no bastante! ¡Siempre suficiente!” I yelled over the treble saturated music. There was much sharing out of the same bottle. No importa. Poco a poco. Juntos.

 

Jai and a friend from school. Jai gave this boy the soccer ball, which prompted first surprise and confusion, then a big hug. Thank you to Kamlo Reid for giving us the soccer balls to distribute here.

Jai and a friend from school. Jai gave this boy the soccer ball, which prompted first surprise and confusion, then a big hug. Thank you to Kamlo Reid for giving us the soccer balls to distribute here.

 

GiGi Patiño spent her Saturday showing us around Quito and teaching us the bus system. Without her we never would have explored the big city so much!

GiGi Patiño spent her Saturday showing us around Quito and teaching us the bus system. Without her we never would have explored the big city so much!

 

If you’re interested in helping the Patiño family pay for Uriel’s treatments and recovery (he’s currently living in the hospital), please see the Go Fund Me page that Brady set up.

https://www.gofundme.com/3ker93v3