It has been a busy few weeks here in Carmen Pampa! Last week we celebrated the Intercarreras, an annual week-long celebration of school spirit and community. We’re back to the regular class schedule this week, but everyone is still tired from all the different activities! It was incredible to see the creativity, dedication, and enjoyment of the students and staff. Every day was filled with sports competitions between the different departments, and every night featured different dance, music, and theatre performances. Here are some photos:
I really enjoyed seeing the way the students celebrated together, and the incredible amount of energy and excitement they brought to the week. The founder of the college, Sister Damon Nolan, is also visiting from the U.S. at this time, and this year is the 20th anniversary of the college, so the festivities were even more elaborate than usual. It was fun and inspiring to get to know the students from different majors outside of the classroom, and to participate in so many different activities with them.
I’m taking an online writing class at the Loft right now, and I wrote a poem last week about one of the cultural nights. It’s an attempt to capture some of how I felt in the midst of such a unique community celebration, and I hope it conveys something of the spirit of the week:
I expected the cooking,
but not the dancing.
I expected pots, pans, scrubbing, aprons,
not a dance floor lit by cell phones and flashlights,
a skillful whirlwind: salsa, merengue, hip-hop, moseñada.
A boy climbed, nestled in a pine, claimed the best view.
I didn’t expect the catch in my throat at a thousand voices singing,
centuries-old folk songs rising out of these mountains.
Beet-peeling, pot-stirring, all for this.
In India, Arundhati Roy writes of a new world –
She is on her way, I think.
I think she is here, watching,
perched in a tree top,
hair brushing the stars.