Tuesday, March 31, 2015

The ICS airport

The International Citizen Service office in Bolivia seems like an airport. Placements that sometimes last for three months happen so quickly that it feels more like three hours of waiting before taking the next flight. One must have a strong heart to deal with so much coming and going, so many welcomes and goodbyes.

As a Bolivian volunteer of the ICS program I have been living nine months in this airport and I still have three more to come. At this point I lost track of how many friends I made, how many laughs I shared and how much work we have done, anyway, I am sure it is lots.

The passengers that pass by the ICS airport begin as strangers, but as they do stuff together they start to become acquaintances, sometimes even more than friends. As if they were families, the members of a project eat together, talk about their lives, if someone gets sick someone will accompany them to the hospital and of course, they will develop personally and professionally together.

The office staff is like an international community that shares culture and traditions. Similarly to the variety of foreigners at any airport, in the ICS office of Bolivia you can find people from England, Colombia, Canada, United States, Peru, Poland, Brazil, Italy, Spain and obviously Bolivia. I am really grateful to belong to this microcosm of the world.

I feel my history here is special and unique; nevertheless, reality is that it is just one more small chapter in the big chain of generations that passed by the ICS airport. Only the walls of this office could tell the complete history. Anyway, last week I said goodbye to my traveler friends and now I have to prepare myself for the following week to welcome my next and last group of British volunteers.

New arrivals!

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