Wednesday, April 25, 2012
#HAWMC - Day 23 : Writer's choice, Surprise road trip [late entry]
Today's prompt for day 23 of #HAWMC is another writer's choice! I need to be good about finishing the challenges from here on out because my last "get out of blogging free" was taking up by bad network issues last night. I had a picture of my post-it and everything. Had a blog post ready to go, all I needed to do was upload it. And then network fall down go boom. But the bigger thing is, I got roped into a surprise road trip. I'm absolutely overwhelmed, but I'm keeping my head above water... It's been awesome and I'll have more to update later, but right now is check-out! Yikes! lol Aaaaand... I couldn't post this on time. I have a good excuse, however.
I will accept that I did not complete the challenge as specified. That's okay. I can try again next year! Anyway... what came up is I had a spur-of-the-moment opportunity to visit Mesa Verde and the Dine and Hopi reservations. While we was there, we made some really good friends, and an Elder blessed me. I'm okay with not making the finish line this year for that!
I got to meat some distant cousins (by marriage) who live on Second Mesa. I got a HORRIBLE sunburn, like a silly Bahana (outsider), but that earned me some pity and I received an aloe plant to take home with me. I found out some great information on traditional Hopi art classes that are being held that I can take. I am restricted on some classes, however, as I am not initiated into Hopi ways. But I should be able to learn some other crafts that have always fascinated me. I want to be able to make those baskets that are so tightly woven they can hold water.
I also want to find some way to share my strength with them someday. (I also don't want to stick my nose where it's not wanted, so I need to be respectful in this.) The reason for this is something one of the elders said to me. We were sitting side-by-side, and had been laughing about naughty things (old men always like to tease the girls). We settled into one of those strange, quiet moments that happens after a good laugh. He hung his head, in a despair that I completely recognize, and said quietly, "We have it hard out here." And I could see that it was true. Not for the poverty or the living conditions, as most tourists would expect.
What I saw was that their lives are hard because they have this amazing, rich culture and way of life that's been almost completely obliterated. It's in revival now, but just like I'm trying to rise from the ashes, I know it's not as easy as taking back what you lost. In a way there is no going back. There is also a horrible pain that lingers after great suffering---a kind that can cripple a soul. It can make us feel isolated. It can make us mean. It can put walls around our heart greater than even George R. R. Martin could imagine. Healing takes a long, long time, and even when completed, it leaves scars.
I feel so honored for the time I was allowed to spend there. Though I do feel terrible for not meeting my obligations for the blog-o-thon, I feel it was worth the sacrifice. I would post some pictures, but pictures are not allowed in their culture. But I did see this posted in one of the art stores. The added caption was "Hopi Police."