A Trip Through the Developing World

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Walking through the hazy streets of Guatemala to the mission team work site, puts life in America into perspective. The kids eating garbage were the same kids who helped us work on the house we were building, with smiles on their faces, ready to help. That made me completely rethink my life back in the states. The Guatemala mission trip during the summer before 8th grade still forces me to change things in my life that need I need to improve on, and reminds me it is possible to learn things from anyone, regardless of age, race or geography.

Flexibility. Something found in most all of the members of the missions trip. If you would talk to anyone that knows me well, you would find I am a flexible and spontaneous person who is able to take directions and apply them immediately if needed. Building a house from bricks and mortar mixed with water in a hole requires flexibility with learning new skills. The native kids who helped us often times gave us lessons on how something was properly done, leaving us amazed at how children this young knew something about building houses. They worked hard, giving us absolutely no choice of doing otherwise, because of course, we can’t be outworked by 11 and 12 year olds. I enjoyed learning the concepts of how a house is constructed in a different country, in this case Guatemala.

Seeing as though psychology is my intended major, I find peoples different ways of thinking quite interesting. Traveling to Guatemala let me in on a culture so different than I am used to and with that, a mindset with many opposites of the United States. Wandering through the markets that fill the streets, the vendors all compete for your sale, willing to adjust their prices just so you come to them. In their effort to provide themselves a living, they show the tourists and visitors the work ethic they have just to put food on the table and many times nothing more. The biggest thing I took away from that trip was the work ethic, which I am able apply in my sport, work and school, constantly reminding me of them.

Other countries may be considered primitive and unstable compared to the U.S. but the U.S. could learn a few things from other countries that would benefit us. Hard work, fighting to be the best and having a positive attitude in the face of negative realities are things I have been able to take away and insert into my daily life. Since then, I have found school and work can be invigorating things that don't have to become negative activity's. I am a person changed for the better, all because of the mission trip to Guatemala.





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