by Corey Meyer
Can you imagine holding your front door closed for hours as violent winds try to pry it open out of your hands? We heard that story today from Jose Medina, director of Campamento Morton (our home for the week), as he recalled the nearly 38 hours straight of Hurricane rains and winds. You can imagine protecting his family as his priority, so much that during the battle with their front door he chipped a tooth from the sheer pressure of wanting to keep what was happening outside from coming inside. I can only imagine what I would push myself to endure for the sake of protecting those around me whom I love.
Today was our first day working on projects in the community of Barranquitos, Puerto Rico. We painted coats of water-sealant on flat rooftops of neighborhood homes, mixed concrete together, and mudded up walls inside homes. It was a day of work in beautiful weather, with breathtaking views of the mountain tops all around. Such a juxtaposition of beauty on what was not long-ago flattened tree lines, damaged homes and broken streets.
We spent most of our time last night driving into camp and looking around taking in the scenery. Today was more of the same, looking around at homes, schools, families, businesses witnessing a sense of “life back to normal” for some in Puerto Rico while holding onto the hope that someday, somehow, life on the Island may be close to what it once was.
Jose told us this morning that we are hope for the people. We are hope that someone heard what was going on in Puerto Rico, listened, responded and came. We, and all the groups that come, are hope that life can be rebuilt one day at a time. Puerto Rico doesn’t need us to come and rebuild, but my sense is that they hope more will come.