What a beautiful day!

Friday, 21 February 2020

What a beautiful day – of encounters today.

As I walked in to CDR and greeted those eating breakfast, a woman and her 8-year-old girl jumped up out of their seats and came running to give me an affectionate hug! Elvia and her daughter Oralia recognized me from my visit to the shelter in Ciudad Juarez last week.

Half hour later, they were in the clothing room. What a bright little girl Oralia is! Then, 15 minutes later, little Oralia led a handicapped woman there. Oralia, a most gracious guide, knew how to explain needs much better than the adult did.

Soon after that, I had a Peruvian lady in the clothing room – first Peruvian I have taken care of in my time here. Now the reason she and her daughter and husband had to leave Peru is not happy news – threats to the family, threats, extortion, waiting for the 13 year old daughter when school let out… But this lady was knowledgeable – about any South American country I asked her about. (Her husband had had earned well in his job, she was a university graduate…)

So I had a most interesting update on my beloved South America, countries I have not followed closely for the last 15-20 years, and countries like Bolivia that I will always love. Of course, I was delighted that she thinks that native indigenous President Evo Morales did a lot of good for the economy of Bolivia, and says that many people, poor and not so poor, are sad that he will not run for president in the upcoming elections. (He has had two terms already) “Viva mi Patria, Bolivia, una gran nación. Por ella doy mi vida, también mi corazón…” (Bolivian cueca)

Then I ended the morning taking Elvia and Oralia to the airport. Complications on their ticket – and I had to return them to CDR until their ticket purchase gets straightened out. But airport time was another delightful hour with this beautiful mother and daughter!

And a P.S. about my heart singing from another upcoming encounter. Two days ago, I revisited the Walmart Memorial 10 minutes from here. I posted two of my favorite quotes from the Memorial, “It is so easy to hate; it takes strength to be gentle and kind;” and “Hate corrodes the container.” Half hour after I had posted the photos – with my reflection – on facebook, I had a message from my great niece Corinne in Vale, Arizona. Can she come visit me before I leave here? We have our date set, March 7. I can’t wait to see this very special niece of mine again! Have only seen her once in the five years since I am back in the U.S.

And so I run up to hug you with the same affection with which Elvia and Oralia greeted me. May God’s gentle love and compassion shine through us all!