Friday, 29 December 2017

My Mayan Adventure: DAY 11 - GUATEMALA

We went kayaking at 5 am this morning and it was crazy beautiful. I really enjoyed kayaking, it's such a peaceful thing to do. Bobbing along the river with the ripples is the best. We saw monkeys and a huge pelican. The pelican fascinated me because it was so big and proud just sitting on the tree and swooping up into the sky. 

After kayaking, I just hung out on the island we are staying on for the day. It's a seriously cute place but the weather has been appalling. It's been chucking it down all day long. 

My friend here sparked up some conversations that initially touched a nerve and made me feel targeted. The conversations were about helping people and animals with a focus on teaching English and veganism. So, the viewpoint was that teaching kids in third world countries English is pointless if they don't even have food and injections, and that teaching is egotistical and for the teacher to feel good. To a certain extent I would agree that basic needs must be addressed before educational needs (we only have to reference mallows hierarchy of needs here) but I do think we must go with our own skill sets and do what we can to help whoever we can. Also as someone who was lucky enough to be bilingual and have the opportunities it has brought, I would like for anyone to have that. Just because someone might be in a terrible position today, doesn't mean you cannot elevate them to a positive and fulfilling future.

My friend's opinion was that we should work hard in a multinational company in order to make money to help people instead, but I honestly think there needs to be a mixture of the two. Human connection and financial support for healthcare are both vital. As someone who has been teaching for years, I definitely don't do it just for myself, I do it to share my skills with others like others did with me. I do it for the love of sharing language and ensuring the students will have the same future opportunities as I had. Like I said before, you need to go with your skill set and there are roles for everyone to fill. You may not be able to change the world, but you can change certain individual's worlds! 

Veganism was touched on because there is so much horror going on to humans too. While it breaks my heart that humans are suffering. Lots of human suffering would be solved if the whole world were to go vegan, the problem is, people, don't want to. In the imaginary ideal world where all humans were vegan; there would be more corn to feed the suffering, more water, less illness in the western world etc etc. I am going to give you some facts from the documentary 'Cowspiracy' and you can go and watch it if you don't believe me! 1 quarter pounder burger takes 660 gallons of water to produce. It takes 18 times as much land to feed a meat-eater than a vegan. Finally, according to the documentary, the world population consumes 21 billion gallons of food each day, while our cow population consumes 135 billion gallons. We currently grow enough food to feed the world's population, and yet, most of the food goes to cattle, not humans. 

While corporations and governments are corrupt and money-grabbing. I refuse to then take charge of my own autonomy and do the best I can. Yes, vegans might not be changing the world alone, but there are quite a few of us now, and we are definitely doing more than someone who sits there and discusses it. Acta Non Verba.  

People don't want to pull their finger out and change and sitting around talking about it isn't going to do anything either. I'm vegan for a whole host of reasons. I refuse to feel defeated because when you feel hopeless, you don't even try! Also, data lama once said 'if you think you can't make a difference, just watch a pebble when you drop it in the water" - everything has a ripple effect and the effect you have on those around you is not one to underestimate. 

Later today, a different group of friends and I discussed parenting and mental health. Trust me, I did not choose these topics! Parenting is hurtful for me to talk about sometimes because I was given the best father who has now passed and I let's just say, my mother and I aren't close. That's all I'll say on that matter but it hurts how much I miss my Pa and from time to time it'll hit the surface. Mental health was also touched upon and it's close to my heart as two of my closest family members have battled with these. I can't take closed minds around anything, especially mental health.

I learned today that it is okay to be sad though. I always try to explain why I'm having a sad day, and it doesn't need to be done. I have been through and seen a lot (not even just with my dad) and actually, it is okay that I ride my sad feelings sometimes. I am going to stop feeling bad on others or explaining myself from now on because it is normal to feel whatever you are feeling! 

Although some of the conversations I have had today have been difficult, I am really glad that I have friends who question my beliefs and make me analyse what I'm doing and what I believe. It wouldn't be a very fun world if everyone agreed about everything after all (-except veganism haha). Also, I've realised that sometimes people may question you because internally they may feel confused themselves and need a little energy their way, and actually that's okay. Energy exchange is okay as long as it doesn't go all the way, and you end up drained. Preserve your peace. 

This post is a heavier one, tomorrow will be a cheerier day! 

Peace Out Potatoes xo


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