Words from Youth: My Host Brother

Reforestation 2013

By Kito, 16 from Ballard High School

June 27, 2013

Last week I could solemnly swear that I didn’t like children. I didn’t like the way they smelled, the way they were always dirty, and especially the way they complained. That is until I met David.

For the first day that my housemate and I returned from a hard day’s work, David was waiting for us with an enormous grin on his face. We hadn’t seen him the night before because we had just arrived in Guatemala and it was very late, so David was fast asleep. This day however, David was wide awake and ready to hang out with us. When we walked through the door, David excitedly shouted “hola!” and brought us to the living room. He sat us down on the couch next to each other and proceeded to jump onto our laps and sit right between us both, with one leg on top of my leg, and the other on top of my housemates.

Seven year old David had not known me for more than 45 seconds, but already we both knew we were going to get along just fine. At first I assumed that all of the kids here were going to be brats, but I learned that I was dead wrong. At one time during the work hours, there was a very large hill that we had to walk over to get to our site. I quickly exclaimed, “ay carumba” because I was taking a heavy box of trees up to our worksite, and a bunch of kids heard me. Without hesitation a posse of children offered to take all of my stuff up the mountain purely out of the goodness of their hearts. These actions that I witnessed absolutely changed my opinion of people younger than me, and I have David to thank for opening my eyes.


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