A mediator

Greetings friends,

Welcome to another gorgeous Sunday. The birds are chirping, the sun is shining and a new day of
possibility stretches before us. Get out there and enjoy the precious moments with which you are endowed.

Last week, I accompanied a small group of U.S. college students to the Legislative Assembly and vicinity for a tour
and shopping excursion. We started out early (8 a.m.) and the energy and friendliness of the (mostly) young students were palpable from the moment I boarded the bus. The ride to our destination was filled with relaxed conversation as the students were eager to absorb the greatest amount of information they could on their last day in our country. They provided me with some extremely interesting (and mostly positive) viewpoints. I felt very comfortable and competent sharing my thoughts with them.

We had previously agreed that I would deliver the group to a colleague at the U.S. Embassy where they would continue the afternoon part of their tour. We arrived at the appointed time and one of the students took a quick picture of the Embassy.  Within seconds, the guard (whom I had not noticed) politely but firmly asked the student to delete the picture. He stood by as she complied. We were at once reminded we had just entered a different country. The student was visibly jubilant moments after when someone suggested she might take her picture later from across the street. Thank goodness for iPhones and quick thinking.

This tiny incident in a day filled with them has remained with me since. I appreciate the fact that the guard was doing his job and I applaud the professional manner in which he did it. I also understand that the student hoped to record an experience she felt was special and might never be able to document again. The disappointment she evidenced when denied her wish was subtle; the satisfaction she showed when she was provided with another option was quite the opposite. I felt elated for her and admired the ‘mediator’ who was able to quickly propose a resolution. In this case, the obvious external reward was the huge smile on the  student; the internal reward for making a difference was no doubt greater and more satisfying. That must be a nice feeling, don’t you think?

Have a wonderful day and a terrific week, Marietta

P.S. There will be a small oxcart parade starting at around 10 a.m. from the Barrio Mercedes Community Center and making its way to San Isidro to conclude the festivities honoring the Patron Saint of our farmers, San Isidro Labrador! If you have always wanted to ride in an oxcart, this might be your chance to do so!

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