To Two of the Greats

I’m taking a moment on my blog to mention two people who have impacted my time in Greece in a way that few others have. Since my arrival on the ground in Leros in the middle of November, volunteers have come and gone, but two have stuck it out and been around for the entiretyContinue reading “To Two of the Greats”

Everyone is Named Mohammed

Our fourth day of painting and revamping the Hub has concluded and we’re just about at our goal of painting three classrooms, the library, and the reception area of the building. I’m starting to lose my mind ever so slowly as the paint fumes have begun to mess with my brain, but I continue toContinue reading “Everyone is Named Mohammed”

Late Night Bonding, Early Morning Reflecting

The waitress brings out a tray held leisurely at her side to the table I’m sitting at out in the sunshine on the porch of the cafe. She’s probably about 50 years old and has her hair pulled into a ponytail and is waiting tables in sweatpants, which gives permission to the patrons to be atContinue reading “Late Night Bonding, Early Morning Reflecting”

“Volunteering, Why Do You Do This?”

This evening, I found myself sitting around a small coffee table in a one room AirBNB with three other men. Eight months ago, they all lived in the Leros Hotspot, a refugee camp on an island near Turkey. I volunteered there, working with them for nearly 3 months. Now, they have all been granted differentContinue reading ““Volunteering, Why Do You Do This?””

The Simplicity of Driving

Many days, after I’ve finished teaching English, I become a driver. I just kind of morph into something new. I like this. As volunteers, we do a variety of different things. But my favorite combination of tasks is teaching English in the morning and then driving in the afternoon. After being in the classroom, evenContinue reading “The Simplicity of Driving”

The Complexity of Teaching

It’s 12:00 on a Monday and I’ve got that familiar feeling of excitement coursing through my blood. It’s a feeling that I have only experienced consistently in my life while operating a classroom. After three days off, I was happy to get back into the swing of things this morning; I always am. For oneContinue reading “The Complexity of Teaching”

Leros, the Life Metaphor

February is about to conclude. This seems odd to me because I feel like I’ve been on this tiny island in the Mediterranean for much longer than just six weeks. In this brief span of time, I’ve witnessed more than two dozen volunteers come and go. Some stayed for stretches of time, prior to myContinue reading “Leros, the Life Metaphor”

Two Dead Bodies and the Problem of the Season

Oversharing. This is something that happens a little too frequently here on Leros. For my liking, yes, but also in terms of program rules. As volunteers, we need to be careful about how close we become to the residents that we work with everyday. This is something that I will try to elaborate on moreContinue reading “Two Dead Bodies and the Problem of the Season”

Language is Not a Barrier

Working around such incredible people is inspiring. It also makes me want to be a better person and do more with my life. I’m realizing, as I grow older, that if I don’t set out to do the things that I feel as though I’ll eventually get to, they may never happen at all. AndContinue reading “Language is Not a Barrier”

Clothing Distribution

My first week here was not a regular week. I didn’t recognize this of course, but every week since has differed from the first. In the first week, we were “doing” distribution. Echo, the organization I’m working with, collects clothing donations for residents at the Hotspot. We currently have a separate location for storing donations,Continue reading “Clothing Distribution”