for doing what she did and getting free

Friday, August 13th, 2010

If I had a legitimate excuse for my prolonged hiatus from this blog, it would be these two women: Lanoy (basketball star/surrogate Lao sister/PoP MVP) and Phet (architect/duck blood soup lover/PoP Rookie of the Year).

For the last month I’ve spent hours on end with these two ever-inspiring, always-entertaining, seriously kickass women. We’ve tediously translated budgets, interviewed contractors, braved the monsooned roads, hosted village wide meetings, and, of course, drank beerlao.

Our goal was very simple: build a school. Build a school and show every single villager, government worker, unconvinced observer, and ourselves that we could. Build a school and provide the kids in Houy Thong with a place to learn.

So we did. With the empowerment and help from an amazing visiting co-worker (and every person in our organization) we built a school.

And a few days ago this little school opened to some very happy people and very big party.

There were speeches (mine nervously in Lao), there was dancing (think square dancing take Lao), there was massive amounts of food (and beerlao), and there was me, with a ridiculous cotton-flower smile on my face all afternoon.

And I can say now with complete confidence that I have never been so honored, so humbled in my life as I was that day with those two great women at my side.

our international language.

Friday, February 26th, 2010

Playing with the kids of Pha Theung.

lovely and amazing.

Sunday, January 31st, 2010

A look at Miss. Kua on the PoP blog, by yours truly.

you say you want a revolution

Friday, January 1st, 2010

Kao says he would buy color crayons.

Tuoc, a book.

With all the money in the world, Ket would buy everything he needs to go to school.

Boa, a place to learn.

Si Sumat wants a pen.

These kids of Pha Theung village want, more than anything, to be educated.

An education, a basic human right, should be accessible to us all, regardless of borders and status.

To the most under-served children in the world, a pencil, a teacher, a classroom, brings the promise of a future with choice.

A future with opportunity.

To know more about empowering education, check out some things PoP. And welcome to the movement.


when the rooster crows at the break of dawn.

Thursday, December 17th, 2009

Growing up in my house there was a lot of Grateful Dead. A lot of John, Janis, Joni. I deeply understood from this early age that I missed something; that a movement had happened that I was meant to be a part of it.

Every piece of Dylan resonated in my blood and I was sure I’d overshot my generation.

In my adult life, I’ve spent a lot of time coming to terms with this, in a way that was, at first, angsty and apathetic. I had friends who felt the same way, so we recreated in our smallest ways possible and talked. Talked and read and listened to music. And did nothing.

Until now.

People asked all the time why we were coming here. I cycled through several answers about writing, about this being our chance, about all things Lao, but all felt like half-truths.

I now know my answer in the purest form possible—the revolution.

I came here because I knew, in that bone shaking part me, that the revolution is out here. And I knew that with Bryce, I could finally correct what had felt like a huge generational oversight.

It’s an overwhelming testament of collective consciousness that this movement brings me here, to this part of the world that so deeply shaped the revolution I longed for.

So, here I am, with my amazing partner, in this country of profound beauty and grace, able to think clearly and let the momentum take me.

Here: truly happy and sure that I’ve found my revolution.

Imagine what will happen, the forces we will fight, when we educated the children and empower the women worldwide.

This is the revolution of my generation and I couldn’t feel more at home in it; like the home of my childhood, filled with Dylan, it feels right.

education vs safety

Sunday, December 13th, 2009

Check out a blog post, by yours truly, on the PoP blog about the Champet girls’ dormitory.

visit the PoP blog here.

brush them teeth.

Friday, December 11th, 2009

While out looking at different school sites yesterday, we met these girls who had just been given new toothbrushes.

Click here to see the video…