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Thursday, July 9, 2015

Granny Peace Brigade Marches Into Justice

Tonight's highlight was the afternoon's session guest speeches. A local Philadelphia Granny Peace Brigade group was here to give us a background speech. They talked about the issues the United States have and currently expresses the problem at hand. They deeply nurtured the anti-war idea and peace for all.

Today I woke up at 8AM because we started class later today, at 10AM. Our location of the class changed today too, just for today though. Our class met in Fisher Bennett Hall and the class itself had a huge ceiling which portrayed a larger room than our McNeil Building Room. Our morning session consisted of doing exercises and discussions for last night's play. The Bearded Ladies Cabaret's lead musician and actor came to our campus and had a very nice discussion on contemporary struggles. Our morning session ended a few minutes earlier and our regular lunch group decided to check out the Penn bookstore and eat in the cafe on the second floor. As I browsed through the hoodies and caps, I realized how much I wanted to buy it, but I have to resist. We are all buying hoodies at the end of the trip and I really want to shop for hoodies together as a cohort. I made my way onto the second floor and started scanning the lunch menu for anything that might pop up at me. I ended up getting a Ham salad with a side of salt & vinegar chips; what a combo.

The walk back to the McNeil building took quite a while but eventually still made it there thirty minutes before the guest speeches. Most of the Granny Peach Brigade members arrived and were talking to some of the students and we decided to go send out our greetings as well. Joanne started conversing really well with one of the grannies and I think that was super cute. They understood our circumstances and nodded in a sense of approval and appreciative. Surely, my thought about them was not wrong. Most of the issues they talked about had various takes in different perspectives. In one way, the bombing of Japan's two major cities with nuclear bomb was horrendous and should not have done that because many innocent lives were killed. But then what is to say about the Japanese military of invading other Asian countries and mass killing all those innocent people? Are Japanese citizens the only ones we have to care about or we have to get a greater picture? These are super complex questions and by gaining a little bit more trust in today's world that there are people who care about peace corps in the 21st century.

Our cohort really wanted to check out the rock climbing structure inside the fitness center so today we made sure to go check it out and it was definitely not a disappointment. The total height of the wall is 37 feet and after successfully climbing to the top of the wall via the medium route, everything so far up till tonight was worth it. When I got up to the top, I felt my adrenaline rush through my body and suddenly there's this surge of energy that charged right into my brain and I was ready for more learning to do!
Made it to the top!
Both Chiamaka and Justeen made it to the top too but kudos to Elexis and Sharlene for never giving up until their arms become automatic jello. It was so worth the trip and I have a feeling that by coming here periodically, it can help alleviate stress when needed. We all showered there and can I say that I LOVE the fitness center showers. They actually have doors and the water pressure is actually on medium; I could feel the water showering over my shoulders and not mist. When everyone was finished, the big thunderstorm broke out and it was literally pouring and flooding the whole street. We then used this time to wait to explore the other three stories of the fitness center. It literally has everything you'll want: mini gold course, yoga rooms, weight training rooms, etc. It finally stopped at 9:20PM and we walked to Jimmy's to get dinner. I'm not sure if Philly rocks the cold food thing but our sandwiches are cold and hard, just like their famous hard pretzels. Why though, isn't hot, toasted sandwiches way more flavorful?

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