My mind is scattered and all the moments are slowly hitting me. I still need time to myself to privately grasp what I have seen and heard. But this experience has shown me my capabilities. I have underestimated my abilities and also have my hidden weaknesses have been uncovered . To be surrounded with individuals who had the same passion and goal was delightful and it made me strive harder. Thank you group one! I did not get the chance at the last meeting to express my gratitude. I will never forget the time when we came back from Alabama and I had a massive migraine. I fell onto my bed and placed my hands on top of my head. I thought since I was at the bottom bunk and the blanket was covering me up no one would notice. But I could hear people whispering while I was sleeping saying “shsh Aryan is sleeping.” I appreciated that so much because I felt dreadful.

We drove up to Alabama for five hours which was worth it. I have taken many road trips but this one seemed to take the least amount of time. Not sure whether it was because I was sleeping most of the way or the company of people. But whatever it was I loved the trip there. Once we arrived we witnessed an overwhelming amount of tragedy. I took many pictures of the houses that were struck by the tornado. I could not stop taking the pictures. I was in shock and did not know how to react. All I could think was capture the moment so once you arrive in a private setting I could take it all in. I am looking forward to sharing my experience to everyone at home. When I was at the warehouse I was one of the escorts that was helping ‘clients’ (individuals who had been affected by the tornado) and I had to help them get vital items that they needed. The first woman that I had to help was Maria who was very humble and caring. She was very shy and kept saying “thank you Mame, I really appreciate this.” I felt awful because I was not really doing anything. Whatever item she picked up she would hesitate and put it down. She thought that other individuals that were in need deserved it more.

It has been an insane trip. It is a shame that I did not get to see all the beauties of New Orleans since there is so much to see. The people of New Orleans are polite and respectful. I am not use to people waving and greeting you unless walking into a store. I also want to thank Tanya and Pascal for picking me as one if the individuals to experience this. I have gained more then I imagined!

When we were driving one last time I was snapping mental images of New Orleans.  It truly is a place that people should see. This was an awesome trip and course. I have learned a lot and coming home more mature. Thank you, New Orleans for teaching me many lessons!

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