I knew that today was going to be very different from the other days because I knew we had a field trip!! I also knew the educational experience was going to be done in a run-down area with twist.
Last night, we had planned to eat breakfast in the 1920 which I had messed up my breakfast because I forgot my Penn card. I then had to turn around and go get it out of my purse. When I found it I knew that I didn't have enough time to go and get breakfast so, I decided to just walk to class. I called Joanne and asked if they could pick me up something. As I was on my way to class I got lost in an area because I couldn't remember which corridor to take. I turned up and down at least three before I called Joanne again. She told me that she wouldn't be able to help me get back so she gave the phone to Chiamaka who eventually told me how to get back as best as she could. I followed her directions but I still didn't do something right so I eventually just waited for them to come down from the 1920's. When they came we walked together and we were only 2 minutes late to class.
I assumed we were going to do Quigong before we broke into groups. That just so happened to not be the case, right when we got there the teaching fellows were getting their groups together. I was in the group that went on the field trip. Which was really cool expect for the heat.
Immediately, our group left the courtyard and went back into McNeil. Dato, my teaching fellow asked if anybody needed to leave any of their bags in a office in the building. Only one girl did, when he went to drop it off down the hall he was taking a really long time to get back. My group noticed that Professor Lamas, Tony Monterro, and Robes Pierre where leaving so we followed them to the trolley which happened to be out of service. So, we walked down to the septa station.In downing so, we left Dato, Sybil, and Kinec on an accident.
We got off and on several trains before actually getting to Northwest Philadelphia. However, when we did arrive there was an evident change in the landscape. To be totally exact there were several changes. For instance there was one block of total raggedy houses and then directly across the street were the very nice and well kept homes ( a.k.a the white area). I also only saw that there were almost no public schools yet there was one charter school. As we walked I continued to notice a series of changes such as the consumers the stores around that particular area attract. An example of this was the clothing and the jewelry stores. It is ironic because instead of having grocery stores, the vast majority of the neighborhood was predominately clothing and jewelry stores.
After, we saw those buildings we walked down to a neighborhood park or community center. There we were introduced to a man named El Sawyer who told us a little bit about a beautiful mural painted by Lilly Yeh.He gave us a little background information on the influential woman. She was asked by Arthur Hall to paint the mural to add a splash of color to such a depressed area in such a dark time. She named the mural " Life Garden".
We also saw another area she worked on which was the park itself. She began the project with a man called Big Man. He was a masonry he created the the " trees" of the park along with the people of the community. We also saw more of her work as we walked around the area. After, meeting Mr. Sawyer we met Johnny Hopkins the director of Philly Earth. He told us about how we could create community gardens and help save the environment.
We then made our way back to the station with our teaching fellow group(s). As my group and I walked we had a small discussion about the neighborhood(s) and the presentations. We all could agree that there was something that could be done to help the environment although, we had some discrepancies about how to help the neighborhood(s). Yet, we found unity in those discrepancies because we could all see that something needed to be done. When we got back to campus it was time for us to leave so we all went our separate ways.
Today, was a great day for me and my class because many of them had never seen a neighborhood in such bad condition so close to their home area.