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Giving Pictures, El Salvador

Written by Robin on Saturday, August 30, 2008
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Douglas and Stephanie Hackney started a really great program they’ve called Giving Pictures – you can read about it here. We think it is such a great idea that we’ve decided to do somethig similar!

We were in El Salvador, on the coast, 26km from the highway. It got dark. We didn’t have a place to stay. The hotels wanted $50! dollars a night to camp (that really confused us).

So we drove along a lane a block from the beach, avoided a violent drunk man, and rattled someone’s fence. A family stepped out from their hut, and they invited us in to stay where it would be safe.

El Salvador family We had a great time, a moonlit walk on the beach, trading languages and doing our best to speak broken spanish and their best to speak broken english. In the morning they cracked a fresh coconut and we feasted on the fresh juice and tender meat.

I took out my camera and lined up the family for a quick photo. They thought it was a great idea, since I would be able to remember them. I disappeared into the truck for a moment, plugged the camera into the photo printer, which then spat out a perfect 4×6 family portrait.

It is an unbelievable feeling to hand this over to a family, and to watch the 73 year old great grandmother smile so wide and completely, to be able to see herself with the family she has put her whole life into, there, in front of her, in one full picture.

I feel like that one night of safe shelter this family gave us was paid back by the dozens.

Further Reading on South America 2008:

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