From Dec. 27th – Dec. 30th began my first few days of a winter travel plan that will conclude on Jan. 11th when I return to Beijing.
Flew down from Beijing to Shenzhen on the 27th, checked in at the hotel and quickly went through some GCC e-mails to hand off some responsibilities while I’m away. Then ensued the birthday festival that has become a tradition for one of my best friends in life. To me, it was a high school reunion, a networking party, and a vacation – a beautiful all-in-one package.
The following morning began at 4:59am, when I sat an alarm to wake myself. I had left the balcony doors open when I went to sleep. The waves were still going, the night still dark. We hopped into a car and sped toward Guangzhou airport, where we were to take an 8am flight to Guiyang, Guizhou, China.
This was my third time visiting this same exact location where Heart2Heart built its first-ever school. We had ambitious plans. The plan was executed. And here we were, in front of a two-story brick building, of 60-70 children who have gone to or current go to the school, of the parents, the townsmen, and the government officials who have worked together to make a lofty goal of some high school students a reality.
I never cried when I saw them before. The children. This time there were children who we’ve seen four years ago. There were parents who we saw four years ago also… but were no longer around. This time I almost, well, cried.
I think Marco’s right – because it felt like we weren’t gonna come back.
Life is future-bound at light-speed. The transition between the current stage and the next will complete when we have only found out that it has begun. Our lives as students are quickly coming to an end. Upon graduation, we will no longer be who we are today, nor will we act like students ever again.
I will remember the conversation we had on the way down the mountain, walking through blocks of stones in the dark of the night, covered by clouds. Life goes on, but with the end of one project comes the beginning of the next. When we grow older, we will have the power to do bigger – that which will bring bigger changes to this world than education opportunities for the children of one village on the mountaintop of a small town in the Southwestern part of China.
Not that this wasn’t great, but we are simply shooting for more.
(My apologies because this post goes back a long way into my high school life. Many gaps to fill between the lines. If you’re interested in the details please check out www.h2hsociety.org + my Facebook photos dating back in 2006-2007. I’ll be posting pictures from this trip when I have more stable Internet access.)
(Also, if you’re interested in donating to H2H, let me know as well =).)