Imagine a couple of stalks of just picked sweet corn, a sweeping view of the fog shrouded mountains, a crude fire that took just seconds to build, a freshly swept bale, a handful of the community leaders, and ME. Now mix them all together and throw in some combat Sasak with a teeny bit of English. Top if off with a few ideas of how to make a village prosper and you've got get together #1 regarding 4th World Love's presence in Indonesia.
This, my friends, was the makings of an impromptu meeting of the minds in my fave village in Lombok where my new NGO is opening a community center & English school as we speak. Hard to believe that our wildly energetic (and sometimes confusing) convo from a few months ago is now coming into fruition.
It was so funny, here I am ready to unleash all the brain power in the world on these simple folks and they're grilling corn up for everyone to enjoy first. I mean, I'm literally on edge, prepared to get the full Q & A from these guys (my friends) and they are just simply gape-jawed that I would even care enough to come back for a visit, much less help start a friggin' community center that benefits their entire village.
So, as we chowed on some grilled corn, we spoke about ideas...ways to help the village. Small things like ongoing English classes, promoting tourism, how to build websites, import/export trails, potential retreats, scholarships, etc...all things that are so easy for me and you to conjure up practically in our sleep. For them, though, it was all a very distant dream. Now, it's suddenly a reality.
It's good to be a traveler. To see deep within a community, make friends with the locals, and really, to just help out in the most innocent way I know how. By going back.