Written by: Jay
Perspective in Pearl Lagoon: When laughing is your first reaction to any misfortune.
Having been in Nicaragua for almost two months I cannot express in words how much our perspectives have changed- even in such a short amount of time.
While our time here in Pearl Lagoon has been amazing thus far and the interns have enjoyed the music, food, and overall culture of the Atlantic Coast, I would be lying if I said we haven’t faced numerous challenges during this incredible adventure.
This past week the Parent Liaison Interns- Kelsie and myself- had planned a trip to the surrounding communities of Orinoco and Tasbapouni. Since Kelsie was lucky enough to have her vacation this week, Catherine our Project Support Intern, accompanied me to facilitate these workshops. Our original plan was to hold the workshops on August 14th and 15th; however, various circumstances made these dates come to pass. So, we decided we would leave Monday, August 19th at 6:30am. Now, after waiting nearly two weeks to finally get on the panga and head to Tasbapouni, Catherine and I were elated when we sat down in the panga and headed out at 6:50am (which is actually early in Nica time). We looked at each other, excited expressions on our faces and exclaimed, “We’re actually going!” As we cruised across the water I became more eager with every wave that passed. This was one of the greatest feelings, we finally had a chance to visit the surrounding communities and facilitate a workshop that we had been planning for close to a month. #success
After thirty minutes on the water, the breeze in my hair, we heard clinking coming from the engine. Catherine and I just turned to each other and smiled, knowing we had jumped the gun with our excitement… we would not be going anywhere today.
Having no service, little credit, and the sun beaming down on us, we began to laugh almost uncontrollably. After getting myself together, I simply pulled out a book I had brought and started to read; smiling the entire time, of course.
What struck me about the situation was our reaction to the whole thing. We were sitting ducks in the middle of the lagoon with no service, no paddles, and no other way of getting to any shore… quite frankly I’m still not even sure where we were. However, despite all of the negatives in this equation, we seemed to be completely unfazed. After sitting there for nearly forty minutes and having to get towed in for another forty-five, when I got to shore (finally) I could do nothing but continue to laugh.
Thinking back I can only imagine what my response would have been a month and a half ago. I can tell you that it would not have been to laugh. Honestly, tears would have been a more plausible emotive response. This is what I mean by “plenty rain, but no clouds”. There has been numerous challenges we have all had to face while being here in Pearl Lagoon, whether its been gossip, the fever, sprained ankles, random people knocking on windows in the middle of the night, or, in my case, the giant moths that exist here, we have all managed to keep moving forward with sincere grace.
Regardless of these setbacks, we have kept a positive outlook the entire time. We continue to smile, laugh, and enjoy almost every moment of our experience here. It all comes down to perspective. To find the good in every situation, even when it feels like everything is going wrong. I think this is the greatest lesson we’ve learned in this month and a half. It may rain and rain, but doesn’t mean there has to be gloomy clouds to bring you down- find the sun. It’s all about perspective.
In any case, after two days of waiting and a three-hour panga ride in the middle of a rainstorm, with waves higher than I have ever seen, we finally made it to Orinoco and Tasbapouni, gave our workshop, (which went amazingly well) and arrived back home to Pearl Lagoon safe and sound.
Now, rather than looking upon these experiences as negative ones, we have looked at them as stories to tell; and pretty funny ones at that.
Again, this is the perspective of Pearl Lagoon: to laugh first, and continue laughing.