May and June ended up being quite unproductive in terms of my volunteering at the Open Door Shelter. There were some blackout dates from my side, but also, our volunteer coordinator was out for a while, and he didn’t leave any backup. Not only did I end up having fewer activities planned, but even some planned activities were canceled because of a lack of coordination. Last week, he told me they would have a celebration for the high school graduates and order food, and why I won’t come and hang out with them. It was not the greatest idea, partially because I came earlier, way earlier, and there were no organized activities, and I could not organize food preparation because it was not planned :). Folks kept approaching me and asking why we were not cooking, why they were not told, etc. I had a couple of very good conversations, but overall, I felt very much displaced.
Later, I walked into the volunteers’ coordinator’s office and told him: let’s put several days on the calendar for July. This was done, and he said it was all his fault that May and June were like they were :). I told him he does not have a failover strategy:). There was one young woman with whom we bonded instantaneously the first time we met, and now he was crying that she would be gone by July and how she would never have my soup again:). I told her that I was sure we would see each other again if she would really want.
In some sense, it proved to be true on Monday. The Night Ministry had a benefit event, and I was invited. The event took place in the Museum of Contemporary Art and was pretty grand. Everybody was excited to get together in person again!
After I registered, I proceeded to the staircase to the second floor where the event took place, and one of the ushers (who was the Night Ministry staff and knew me) greeted me: Hi Ms. Henrietta! And immediately, I heard from the other side: OMG, that’s Ms. Henrietta! I turned around, and it took me some time to recognize the young man. Partially because we hadn’t seen each other for several years, but partially because I was absolutely sure I won’t ever see him again.
I met him in ODS several years ago, and his personality impressed me greatly. It was one of these cases when I am not sure who is teaching whom, and I am absolutely sure that I receive more than I give.
He was kicked out of ODS for rules breaking, so we could not even say goodbyes properly. Later, we met at one benefit event when he became a member of a youth group working together with the Nigh Ministry. We started talking, but another guest interrupted our conversation, and we ended up not exchanging the phone numbers. And then the pandemic happened.
This time, the first thing he said when I turned to him was: I need to get your phone number! I was a little bit worried that we will get lost again, but we found each other closer to the end of the event. We shared our news, exchanged phone numbers, and agreed that the stars were aligned in our favor:).
Some pictures from the event: