It's incredible to think that this long awaited trip to Honduras is coming to an end.
As I reflect back on this week, I think about how I felt when I first arrived at the airport in San Pedro Sula. As we rode in the 5 hour bus ride to Gracias, Lempira, all I could focus on was the poverty and the sub-standard housing that lined the streets. I thought about the homes we live in in the US, versus the shacks that many Hondurans call home.
However, as the week went on and I got to meet the local members of the community, I noticed how much happier they were than us.
Americans may be more materially rich, but Hondurans are more relationally rich because they focus their energy on family and community. They focus on the things that make them whole and do not stress about menial things that don't matter.
Now that we are at the end of our trip, I realize that we have so much to learn from them. We may have more material possessions, but that is the root of all our unhappiness. We distance ourselves from family and meaningful friendships because we constantly need to work. We work because we can never make enough money. We need to make more money because we need to support our lavishly materialistic lifestyles...
This trip has helped to shine the light on what really is important in life and I hope the local Hondurans' free spirits can travel back with the group and continue to remind us to see that true happiness cannot be bought.
Until next time, my friends.
(This post was written by Justine Tsao, an AmeriCorps National member at Habitat Wake.)