Sunday, 31 January 2016

Week 2 and 3

It's been hard to find time to come and post some news. I beat myself up for not doing it often, but truth is I can't stretch my days. I simply don't have time to do it. Shifts have been hard. They were specially hard on the second week. Snowed most days and I barely had the energy to keep myself moving. 

Some days I wake up and I even find myself being happy and peaceful. Others, like today, it's very hard. As I'm sitting on my computer, at a café in the port, I read news about another boat sinking and 40 people being dead. I look to the sea and think "this is happening right here". It's a hard thing to grasp. 

Some events knocked me out in the last few days.
On one of the days that it was snowing, a woman approached me with a baby on each arm and asked me for help, in perfect english, regarding what her next step is, after getting the registration papers. I told her she needs to get the bus to the port and buy a ferry ticket to Athens, but I know there's a ferry strike, and as so, she might only be able to buy a ticket to travel 2 days after. I write on a piece of paper the name "Kara Tepe". It's the camp where Syrians and Iraqis can go and stay, get some food and rest. I tell her to go there after buying her ticket. I carry one of her babies to the bus stop and we wait together for the bus to arrive. She tells me her husband did the trip a few months before and he has reached Germany and now it's their turn to join him. the bus arrives, I leave the three of them and go back to work. And then it hits me! Here was a clear situation in which I could have done so much more to help. And I didn't! It was a perfect opportunity and I missed it. I could have travelled with her to the port to buy her ticket and then help her with the kids and her bags. Pay for a hotel, give her a place to rest... I missed a golden opportunity. I could have really helped her! I went to the port a few hours later and tried to find her. I didn't see her. I like to think some other person noticed this struggling woman and helped her. But what if no one did? It's been over a week and I still wonder how she is. How she will manage to do the whole journey to Germany...

Here's some photos of your week:

We spent a lot of time this week organising donations. With the cold weather, less boats arrive, making it the perfect time to go to the warehouse and prepare for busy days. 

On the top photo you can see some kids trying to keep warm as it snows. They got bored very quickly and were staring to throw stones at each other as it was the only thing they had to play with. So I got the markers out and colouring book. It was one of my favourite moments this week.
On the second photo you can see them focusing hard on what they are creating, but you would never know there's snow falling on top of us as we are doing this, and that there's queues of people to register, or that this place is a mess. It was just us and some markers.

It worked so well that we repeated the stunt the following day. 

This was a memorable event this week. The drawings this young girl made are very graphic and portray her journey.
You can read more about this girl on another post I wrote.

On one of the days, registration closed the whole afternoon, so a tent was opened for people to wait inside because it was snowing outside. We were allowed to go in and distribute diapers, blankets and sleeping bags, because people would have to wait here for over 5h before they were allowed to register. 
 It's hard to imagine that last time we were here for only 5 weeks and it seemed like ages. And now, we are approaching 5 weeks and it seems like we have been here no time at all. 

Bring on week 4!

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