Monday, September 16, 2013

Say Cheese!

Or in Botswana, say "phaletshe."  I used to think that it was so much fun to see a photograph of yourself, and guess what, I still think it is the most remarkable thing.  Photographs are so special, they are the images that we have a personal investment in, that special meaning.  They record places we've been, some of the most magical places on earth, even it's your own living room.  Those intimate moments held in a photo as life skips by us, people coming and going, and all we have is the photograph to remind us of our precious memories.

Most people never the get the opportunity to venture out to see a slice of the real world to see what life really means for others, the world where dirt, dust, and bush are a kids best toy.  It didn't take long into my service to see that a genuine smile from these kids are enough to brighten your own inner smile.  So, last year I started giving photos to a select few who truly earned them, or who were my great friends here.  Now as I am departing, I made about 20 photos to give to those I care about, or again, to those kids in my schools who have worked hard with me on our school newsletter, been in my teen club, or are a fabulous traditional dancer.

Today I gave the last of these photos out, and two girls took them and literally broke down in tears because they never had a photo and it meant so much to them.  I told them why they were getting it, and to always stand up for themselves and do the right thing in life.

I can't imagine a life without photos, I've taken thousands of them here and wish I can give each and every kid and family one, but most of all----I'll never forget their smiles!

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