The Time We Worked For The First Time


Waking up more and more tired, I was up at 1 am again, along with the rest of the girls. Standard time, but in England, not here.

As everybody gathered sleepily in the kitchen for some breakfast, with the pan for the day still unclear, I was anticipating the day. the rumour was, that we are going to a local bakery, which if that doesn't excite you, we shouldn't be friends. The smell of freshly baked pastries and bread is one of the reasons I want to visit France, so understandably it got me a bit happy in this sleepless trance.

As we approached the bakery I was more and more undecided as to what I want to have, where all the cakes, pastries and bread looked of decent size, but delicious, which shouldn't really be a problem, but you know how they say, too much choice can be bad (not sure if that;s an actual saying or not, but many authors and thinkers would argue this thought).

Ending up with a Double Baked Almond croissant for me, we were headed for the compulsory Starbucks visit across the street (I swear they are on each corner here!). This hour or so was the perfect time to try to catch up with family, so I managed to get hold of my dad only. Another good point to this time is the ability to people watch. Now, if you know me at all, you would know that I love to do that at any time, sometimes prefer it over conversation, but watching the Americans was slightly different. I observed all the stereotypes - which some of them I do not dare to mention - and also that the general, preferred type of cars is trucks in here. As my dear friend Georgina said: "it's a truck-city" which is very accurate.

Along with this classic
Undecided as to what to do with the time on our hands, we convinced our new friends to take us to the local Target store, to further observe the American life style, only to prove once again, Americans are incredibly lovely and cheery people. The store itself is very similar to the ones we get here, like Poundland or B&M or any equivalent. Trying to not spend any money in this place is therefore an unattainable goal, as even I ended up with several packs of chewing gum and a pack of twizzlers. Matter of fact, it was my first encounter with the cinnamon chewing gum, which I was looking forward to try, and found the experience pleasant. However I had a bit too much of it, and the aromatic part of it ensured that my whole bag smelled of it, resulting in me feeling a bit sick of it by the end of this trip. Oh well :)

After visiting Target it was finally time to go and do some of that volunteering. So we headed to the Hope Line food bank warehouse, where we were warmly welcomed. This seemed like a big place, however as we later found out it was the smallest one we volunteered at. Part of the warehouse designated for the 'customers' was set up like an actual grocery store, with trolleys and isles and everything, while behind the 'staff only' door the warehouse consisted of large to massive boxes and racks of predominantly canned foods. 

Our job: sort everything out. 

We were sorting through boxes that contained mixed food. And by mixed I mean from canned tuna and beans, through peanut butter to rice and pasta and dry, powder mix foods as well as 1 year out of date and 5 years out of date. Such were the kind donations. We sorted out the in-date and out-date foods first, then it was sorted into pasta, cereal, beans etc. baskets. By the end of it I personally took it upon myself to hang out of the box with my legs up in the air, just so I can get to the last bits. Shame they didn't take a photo.

Still feeling very filled, we headed home for some dinner. As my friend and I found out, eating too much food will equal a salad for dinner, with that amazing salad dressing that Ivan introduced us to. It remains unimaginable to me how others managed to get Mac-and-cheese down.

Finishing the day off with our first reflection time, we talked about what we liked that day and how much of an eye-opener this first job was. I believe some of the group squeezed couple card games (UNO and spoons) before sleep, but really, by the time dinner was over I was more than ready for the deserved sleep. 


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