Written by Nick Herrick – GVI Quepos Programs Manager
Never outside of Mary Poppins have I seen so many kites in one place. There were big kites, small kites, square round and triangular kites, brightly coloured and pale pastel kites, kites with tails and without, kites so high that they don’t even show up on the photos I was taking. One thing all of them had in common was that people were holding them and enjoying them. People who had spent time and effort making them and were now reaping the benefits. As I stood taking in the sheer number and variety in front of me one of the younger boys from the community asked me whether I had a kite. I replied that I didn’t. Did I know how to fly one? Once again I did not. “Why?” was his question. “They are so much fun!” At least that is what I chose to understand as this conversation took place in Spanish and I am a beginner to say the least, but the point seemed clear. Why would you not take the opportunity to do something as simple and wholesomely fun as flying a kite? And what better way to bring a community together than the annual kite festival?
I would like to thank El Cocal Primary School for a wonderful weekend that helped me to better understand the community I work in. Working in disadvantaged communities can be a wonderful experience but when you only work Monday to Friday you tend to see those communities in a different light. So often it is the substance abuse, the unemployment and the lack of education that are highlighted. It was a delight to see so many people brought together and enjoying themselves as families and as a community, and it was a privilege to be a part of it.