Monday, November 23, 2015

Guatemala: San Miguel Dueñas: November 22 2015

Sunday: Connecting with the Open Windows board of directors

To carry on from Janet's blog, the team did a fine job of carrying on in the 'spirit' of the evening, sampling the sipping rum and South American wines at a local wine bar. A few of the heartier board members kept the rest of the hotel entertained into the wee small hours - ear plugs should be a mandatory part of the DWC board travel list! :-)

It was a slightly less exuberant group at breakfast this morning, but a few hardy shoppers took to the quaint, cobbled streets of Antigua to search for Christmas gifts for family at home. The morning started with a 9 a.m. 'canonization' by the church air cannons that continued on at irregular intervals until noon. Again, the ear plugs would be a good suggestion!

At 12:30 we went to lunch with the board of directors with Open Windows. It was at the lovely home of one of the board members and we ate in their beautiful and well-tended garden. Each of our hosts brought a delicious contribution to the potluck consisting of organic salads, vegan and chicken enchiladas and lentil pastas. We ate, laughed and told stories about our homes and Open Windows. Most of the board members are expats from the U.S. who have made Antigua their home: artists, actors, teachers, an author, a fashion designer, home designers, a chef and a former model. The afternoon went by quickly and included the 'advent' of Santa Claus who gave out suckers to the Developing World Connections board!

One of the highlights for us was the thank-you speech from our host Louisa. She spoke about the impact that the more than 30 Developing World Connection trips made to their organization and the hundreds of children who have benefited from the education at the school and how they have given back to their communities in so many ways. She also mentioned their delight in meeting so many of our young Canadians from the high-school trips and hearing how these trips had so changed the course of their lives. At the end of the trip, when she asked them about how it impacted them, she said "they bared their souls." It was a touching moment for all of us.

The day ended with a delicious Guatemalan dinner and a great DWC board meeting!!
It's an amazing experience!

A beautiful garden setting.

Getting to know each other.

Wayne and Janet conferring.

Richard and Kym hang out.

Kym and Wayne picking fruit.

Marcia catches an early visit with Santa.

Lisa had some time with Santa, too.

Marcia Julian (blog) and Bonnie Flanagan (photos)
Developing World Connections board member
Guatemala November 2015

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