You never know what to expect when you pull into a town for the night.
Danielle and I decided to camp in Golden; a small town surrounded by sharp white tipped mountains with a quick moving river that winds it’s way through it. That morning after Danielle had done her morning stretches and I had struggled to strain coffee through a J cloth off our single burning stove we headed over to the high school to pitch our program to whoever would listen in hopes of getting a chance to give a presentation or workshop in their school. This was the first time we had approached a school like this; usually we coordinate our workshops and speeches via phone and email. As we walked in to the school I became conscious of the fact that neither of us had showered in days, i was wearing a pair of shorts over long underwear and a pink head band and Dani was wearing flip flops with every item of clothing she had with her; gripping a warm mug of coffee.
We spoke to the sweetest secretary Roberta, who promised to spread the word to the principle and teachers and get back to us if there was interest. Shortly after we left the school we received and email asking us to come in and give a workshop first thing the following morning. YES!
The following morning we delivered a workshop to a grade nine english class. The teacher loved it so much that she asked us to stay and give a second workshop to her french class and there were a couple teachers that sat in to watch. The teachers were impressed to see how active and engaged the students were and it was apparent that the teachers were also eager to take part in the discussion. Things got particularly heated when we asked individuals to pick a side on which occupation they thought were more important in society “farmers or doctors”. After the workshop 3 more teachers asked us to visit their class for the last period of the day. We managed to squeeze 60 kids into the drama room and did a large size workshop to end the day.
After school we met the VP and she invited us to a fundraising dinner event where a group of elementary school students were raising money for Free the Children to build a well in Kenya. The gymnasium was packed; the entire community was there eating spaghetti and baked goods while they watched their kids and community members put on a talent show. Word got out that Dani and I used to work for M2W and Free the Children and we were asked go up on stage to speak about Free the Children’s development model and talk about the impact of their children’s fundraising efforts.
As Dani and I stood in front of this packed gymnasium and I listened to Dani tell stories of her trips overseas visiting FTC’s development projects I couldn’t help but giggle to myself at the turn of events over the last 48 hours. What started with an unscheduled drop in and a quick conversation with a secretary ended with us being honoured guest at a fundraising event where we were given the privilege to speak to their community about the amazing work of Free the Children and impact their children were having on communities over seas.
This is what makes travelling so exciting. You never know what to expect, who you will meet or what is waiting for you around the next corner.