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Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Community in Wonderland: Today is a great day

Today is a great day for those who believe in the Guamanian Dream,
those who dream of continued dependence on the military for our island's prosperity,
those who believe it is okay to sign away cultural resources with questions left unanswered,
those who feel it is easier to put our future in the hands of others rather than push for more accountability in those we vote for.

While I don't share that dream, today was still a great day for me.  Today I saw beauty in my mother attempting to cook a dish that her mother once made.  She told me that around lent her uncles would bring fish that they caught to my grandparents and in return my grandparents would give them vegetables from their garden.  My grandmother would make eskabeche with the fish and vegetables.  Today I went with my parents as they shopped for the ingredients for this dish.  I thought it was a little sad that we had to shop for fish and vegetables, but something made it a little brighter.  As she rang up the vegetables, the cashier recognized the ingredients and asked my mom if she was going to make eskabeche.  My mom explained that she was going to try to, but it was her first time. The woman told my mom to wait while she rang up another person after us, then she closed her lane and took my mom to the side and gave her some tips on how she makes her eskabeche.  How beautiful is that?  Thank you Betty at Hagatna Payless.

Shortly after reading the article about the programmatic agreement being signed I went off on an adventure with Nella.  We planned to walk from Gun Beach to Hilton.  I was very upset around the time Nella arrived, but once we got going I was mostly happy.  It's hard to be disappointed when you're surrounded by ocean and sky.  The walk was amazing.  I almost cried when we realized that the group of paddlers nearby were not counting in the Spanish borrowed numbers, but in the original CHamoru language. "Hacha, hugua, tulu, fatfat. . . "

My dreams do not include a firing range in close proximity to ancient burial grounds and other places of cultural significance.  They don't include the bartering of environmental integrity for the possibility of economic growth.  They don't include the expansion of dependence on the military for our survival.  My dreams are made of the things that made my day great and visions of sustainability and learning from our history.

Before I wrote this post I was mad again.  It was almost a rant.  But while writing this I realized that ranting will not do any good.  Just because I think someone else's dream is ridiculous doesn't mean I should stop focusing on my dream.  So for those of us who don't dream of living the Guamanian Dream, we just have to remember that this is not the end of our dreams.  It just may mean that we may have to dream bigger and harder.

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