TEAM 08 | SCAD ARCHITECTURE & ELECTRONIC DESIGN
LIFE CHANGING EXPERIENCE!!! I went this 2016 spring break and I strongly recommend going or at least try it once. You learn a lot and help people that really need it and are so grateful for any kind of help they receive. The kids are amazing and you will fall in love with them really quick!!! Its hard work, and end up really tire but every single day its so worth it. If you are interesting in helping people, working hard in groups and like to put a big smile in kids face don't waist this amazing opportunity that you have in your hands and GO!! It was amazing to actually make a real difference in the world. To see the families and the kids with such a huge smiles because of us was priceless.
TEAM 07 | SCAD INTERIOR DESIGN
My venture trip to the Dominican Republic was nothing short of amazing. All the people that I encountered on this trip seemed to be so loving. And for the entire I was surrounded by love, whether it's the love that we had for the people that we were building the house for, or for the love of building, or for the love that we had for doing something for somebody else, or even the love that we'd developed for one another. It was really love that kept me going. I have never built a house before or done anything that required so much physical labor. Sometimes, while building the house I would be really tired but my motivation was that I was helping somebody else and I truly LOVED that. I've never done anything so important in my life, and this trip has truly sparked something inside me that just wants to help more people and spread more love to the world.
TEAM 07 | SCAD ARCHITECTURE
My name is Nicolas Barrera. My major is architecture. I was part of the venture trip fall 07. This has been one of the best experiences that I ever had. The trip helped me to understand more how construction works. It also taught me a lot about the value of life, it made think about how fortunate I am. I loved sharing with the community and learning from them. I definitely recommend the trip to everyone how loves giving to others.
TEAM 07 | SCAD ACCESSORY DESIGN
My name is Chantal Quamina. I am from the island of Trinidad and Tobago. The idea of working in the Caribbean is what first attracted me to BRP. The fall trip was my second trip with BRP. It was one of the best experiences of my life. On the trip I took my own pictures to use in my senior collection. I decided to base my senior thesis on the culture of the Dominican Republic. On the trip I also helped the jewelry team making beaded jewelry.
TEAM 06 | SCAD FIBERS
I am a creature of logic. I think before I feel, and as a result I am prone to wise, safe decisions. Because of this, when I saw two roads diverging in the woods, I took the road well traveled (Robert Frost's "The Road Not Taken"). I took the easy path for a million reasons. I was scared, I was lazy, and I didn't much care for a challenge. I trusted the sturdiness of well-worn dirt beneath my feet. I had worked so hard in high school, and I wanted nothing more than for things to fall into place, so I chose a manageable college with a fairly simple degree that I cared little for. It took all of two weeks for me to grow restless, and, after I debated with myself and tried to make things work, I wound up dropping out and returning home at the end of the semester. I dreamt of a future where I could be happy and carefree, but I had forgotten to shoot for the moon. I shot for the earth, so I'd land on stable ground when I fell. And I did fall, and I did land on stable ground, and I couldn't help but think what a waste it had all been: a waste of money, a waste of time, a waste of intellect and talent. When BRP found me I was working three jobs to pay off loans, and because of such I had no time to work on art, knitting, sewing, singing, dancing, writing, reading, or any of the other gifts I possess. I thought working three jobs would bring me success, because I would have money to create a stable future. I was so busy going through the motions I barely noticed how miserable I felt, until I left America and my mundane life. That is why I say today I am hopelessly attached to the smile of a little girl who sits in the sunshine of a different country—a little girl who came to me even though she was afraid, and looked to me with hope even though she had nothing else. BRP had created in that village a spark of hope, and when she turned to me with her big brown eyes I could finally feel it, too. Her shy smile, her brilliant joy in spite of trouble. There was another family in another village who was facing the difficulty of a mentally handicapped son, George. George’s face and the front of his shirt were always covered in streams of saliva, and his hands ran slick with it. Many of the other children would tease him, though some others defended him because he could not defend himself. I only ever heard George speak in grunts, but if you looked closely at his face and followed the pull of his hands you could discover what he needed. I met George on the very first day and I can honestly and shamefully say I was terrified. George has a very forceful personality, and I was afraid of upsetting him because I didn’t understand what he wanted. I resisted the urge to hand him off to someone better with children, and I instead knelt down to his level, looked in his eyes, and searched for understanding. I knew almost immediately he only wanted to play, to run through the village, so I took him with the group until he ran away to another of the volunteers. His jubilant nature pulled at my own joy. I thought I had gone to the Dominican Republic to show sympathy and learn of weakness and pain and suffering. Instead, I learned strength and courage and understanding. I have finally learned that the safe job is not always the right one, and perhaps the moon isn't so far away. I was so honored to learn this with the loving support of SCAD students and staff, who encouraged me without fail, and guided me to my new passion. I am finally ready to do what I’ve always wanted but always feared to do: create art. I would love to be able to do this with the people who brought me this far—the inspiring artists of SCAD. And though a year ago I never would have thought I'd end up in a foreign country making bracelets with a child and a team of brilliant artists, I am delighted to say I was changed for the better as I sat in that hot, hot sun, and worked towards a brighter tomorrow.
TRIP 06 | SCAD INTERIOR DESIGN
The Batey Rehab Project is a one of a kind experience. I consider myself beyond lucky to have had the opportunity to go on the summer venture trip with a group of fantastic peers and BRP staff. From the second I landed in the Dominican I felt immersed in a new culture. The drive through the country was beautiful, and just the beginning of an amazing journey. I could write on and on about how much I loved this trip and how much it meant to me to be able to have the chance to do something like this, but in all, all I'd be saying is that this trip changed me. It changed me for the better and showed me what it's like for these native people everyday. I look at life with a new perspective and a greater appreciation for everything I've been blessed with. I am so glad that Katie started this organization, gave SCAD students the opportunity to go with her on these trips, and that I got a chance to change the lives of the people in the bateyes. A BRP venture trip is unlike anything you'd ever expect to find on a typical service trip. BRP is about love and community and becoming one with the culture of the Dominican. A BRP venture trip is an opportunity of a lifetime and if given this chance, anybody who can, should take it. The trip will give you a new perspective on life and make you appreciate the smaller things that we take for granted on a day to day basis. I left part of my heart in the Dominican Republic, but I know I'll go back to give a little more of it.
SOPHIA DI VITTO
VENTURE TRIP 06 | SCAD JEWELRY
I am a recent graduate of SCAD majoring in Jewelry and minoring in Art History. I went on the BRP venture trip to share my love of beading and jewelry with the Batey peoples. I have been wanting to work in a need based community, and this trip gave me the opportunity. It also confirmed that I would like to continue to work in such communities, abroad as well as in the US. Starting in Fall 2016 I will be attending Teachers College Columbia University for a masters in Art Education. Combining the BRP experience and my degrees, I plan to open my own non-profit Jewelry Art Center and continue to share my love of art, design, and jewelry with others. I would describe it as an opportunity to share what you love to do with people less fortunate than you. Being a volunteer with BRP gives you a chance to travel and do good in the world at the same time.
VENTURE TRIP 06 | SCAD JEWELRY
It is an incredibly unique trip. It is not a typical mission trip because the team is made up of smaller teams. We all are working on different projects, which gives the trip a giant collaborative feel. It is also amazing to meet the people living in the bateys, and get to know them. They are so sweet, there is not a moment of the trip that will make you feel like you want to go home.
VENTURE TRIP 06 | SCAD ARCHITECTURE
To those reading, I volunteered for BRP to do what I was told, as I have always believed teamwork, reliance, and respect can help accomplish any goal, and a house in a week is a bog goal. However, I got so much more than I originally thought I would get. I got friends, I got real world experience, I got a pack of Dominican children ready to hug me at any given second of the day. BRP was more than just an internship; it was the adventure I always wanted to go on, and the dream of a family finally coming true. Good luck on yours, I sincerely hope to see you there.
VENTURE TRIP 04 | SCAD INDUSTRIAL DESIGN
Going on this venture trip for a second time really allowed me to grow as a person. I was happy to be back and glad that some things were actually familiar to me, however my experience was completely different this time. On the last trip I got to work with more of the villagers and the local workers, but on this trip I was able to work in a much smaller group allowing me to create some amazing bonds with the jewelry team. We did a lot of traveling and put in a lot of long nights but we learned so much on this trip and I learned so much more about myself on this trip as well. I was able to see a lot more of this beautiful country and the people that are connected to it. The amount of love and hospitality that was offered to us was heart warming. It amazed me to see just how quickly the students in the workshops caught on to the methods and techniques we were teachings and I had a proud teaching moment when one of our students became the teacher and showed the director how to do all of the steps to complete a necklace design without any of our help. My experiences with BRP reminds me that there is beauty and kindness in this world and I am very thankful that I have had the honor to partake in this amazing experience not once but twice. I hope to continue working alongside BRP for as long as possible, and when I am no longer able to, I wish nothing but the best for the future of the organization and it volunteers.
VENTURE TRIP 04 | SCAD PHOTOGRAPHY & PRINTMAKING
My BRP trip was a life changing experience. Between working on the house and doing workshops with the children I have grown as a person. After returning from the fall venture trip I knew I wanted to go back as soon as possible and to continue to help make a difference in these people's lives. BRP has helped me realize just how lucky I am and has inspired me to do all I can to help make a difference in this world; this organization changes the lives of families extremely less fortunate than us and it's an amazing feeling to be apart of it. The relationships I've made with my fellow volunteers and the families I met are bonds that can never be broken. I'm looking forward to going back and to continue growing as a person and as a photographer.
VENTURE TRIP 04 | SCAD JEWELRY
I love helping others and knew that BRP was the perfect opportunity for me to be able to do just that and even a chance to use my career path to do it! The trip to the Dominican Republic was absolutely amazing. It really was a life changing experience. I have never met so many happy and hard working children. The families and young adults that we worked with always had a smile on their face and were more than eager to learn new things. I cannot wait to go back to the Dominican with BRP to be able to teach more workshops and see the kids of Milton and Bombita with the huge smiles on their faces.
VENTURE TRIP 04 | SCAD PHOTOGRAPHY
My name is Kendall Pemberton, I was a photography major my freshman year at SCAD. Ever since high school I have dreamed of working for non-profits here and abroad, anything to help others. After my freshman year I decided to pursue International Studies at the College of Charleston. It was a huge decision to leave my dream school, but with the Batey Rehab Project I was able to reconnect with the creative community while getting some hands on experience within a non profit. While in the Dominican Republic my heart was captured not only by the program but the children of both Milton and Bombita. Never in my life did I expect to meet such energetic and happy children, living in such poor conditions. I also learned that even though there is a language barrier, that doesn't mean you can't form a relationship with the people. From the children like Isabel and her 12 siblings and Juan Carlos, it just came easy to connect and be happy around one another. I now firmly believe that I am headed in the right direction by pursuing a career through a non-profit. I would not have been able to see the door open without the help of Katie and the rest of the Batey Rehab team. They are doing amazing work and I can't wait to see what future venture trips hold for them and the rest of the volunteers.
VENTURE TRIP 04 | SCAD FASHION DESIGN
Never leaving the United States, I was extremely excited for this trip! My expectations were exceeded. Katie Godkin was a relate-able group leader that lead us to build an entire house in under 9 days. There was never a moment of dullness. I was kept busy the entire trip. There was so much beauty in the Dominican Republic, and being able to help the citizens felt great. The Bateyes and my group mates felt like family.
VENTURE TRIP 04 | SCAD DESIGN FOR SUSTAINABILITY
Initially I wanted to volunteer with BRP for a second time to gather research for my Final MA project,but I gained much more. Returning to the Dominican Republic and getting a chance to reconnect with the kids, BRP staff, and the culture was an amazing experience. Returning to one of the villages where we did work previously was an unreal feeling. I was beyond grateful to have another opportunity to be immersed in the culture,and return to the laughter and smiles of the children. This venture trip helped to reinforce what I've been learning so far at SCAD, also gained knowledge from the internship that I can use in my career. I definitely encourage all students to consider applying for future venture trips. Once again I was truly humbled by my experience there, I'm now able to focus on the bigger picture and appreciate the small things in life. I left the Dominican Republic with a new view on life, new friendships, and a greater passion for giving back selflessly.
VENTURE TRIP 04 | SCAD INDUSTRIAL DESIGN
It is really difficult to describe the essence of this trip to the fullest with only words and pictures. It's an amazing trip that challenges you physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually every second from the moment you get there. I was having a difficult semester before going to BRP. I was going through unexpected changes, I wasn't sure about choices I had made and I was becoming very insecure about what I was going to become. This trip couldn't have come at a better time. I thought I was there to help this family, spread happiness to these kids so I thought I wasn't prepared, but the family help me; these kids help me. Yes, I was there to make a difference and work hard for the family, but they made it easy. They believed in our group and accepted us into their home. They wanted us there. Naturally, this made me feel really good and grateful. Katie was incredibly inspiring. She's a young designer easy to relate to. She is honest, straight forward, confident and strong. She's determined to make everything happen, believes in what we are all doing and is incredibly grounded about everything that is going on. Being surrounded by group mates that are driven, talented and consistently focused on achieving was something that helped me through the entire trip. Can you imagine? Amazing team leader, amazing team and amazing family in need? It was all a blessing. I came back from the trip inspired and confident. BRP gave me the experience I needed to know that my talent had a purpose. I can't think of my life continuing without being part of BRP.
DANIELA MORAN MARRERO
VENTURE TRIP 03 | SCAD INDUSTRIAL DESIGN
I've always wanted to do volunteer work, but I had never had the chance to do so. From the moment I found about BRP I knew this was the trip to do it. There were various elements that called out to me: this trip was to the Dominican Republic, they spoke Spanish, it was close to home which is Puerto Rico, and the volunteers were able to bring their own ideas and do hands-on work. When we got to the first Batey, Bombita, I was very nervous and even though we were well informed I didn't know what to expect. I had never seen so much poverty, not only that but what shocked me the most is how a place so close to home could be so different. After that first day everything felt strangely normal. The other volunteers and the staff became family. Each day was intense, we had to wake up early and work really hard 'til sundown but the families we did it for made it more than worth it. The kids were always there, filled with joy and surrounding us. Whenever I was on a break, I would sit with some of them and play or they would start doing my hair; they always kept me going. There were a lot of both heartwarming and heartbreaking moments. Seeing the way they live and what kids do for fun opened my eyes and I realized that there is so much we complain about when we shouldn't and how we don't need many of the things we have. Besides the volunteer work we had time to explore DR too, which was a nice break between days. The memories from this trip and the people are something I'll cherish forever. This is the greatest reward. If I would've had the chance to I would've stayed longer. Hopefully I'll be going back soon.
VENTURE TRIP 03 | SCAD ARCHITECTURE
My trip with BRP was equally strenuous, exciting and rewarding. I enjoyed working hard because the families we were aiding are so deserving and appreciative. The moment we left the van every morning, we were surrounded by excited and loving children, reaching out to hold our hands. We worked alongside some incredible translators and workers who were intelligent, caring, funny and provided a sense of security. This experience is one that has changed me and given me a greater appreciation of everything I have and it empowers me to give back.
VENTURE TRIP 03 | SCAD INDUSTRIAL DESIGN
My name is Ashli Thomas. I'm from Chicago, IL but I have family in Jamaica, Dominican Republic, Canada, England, Cuba, and of course the USA. I have always loved helping people. However, I have been trying to find a way to help others through design, which is my passion. Going on the BRP Venture Trip was an amazing experience. Not only did it help me see that it is possible to help people through design, but it allowed me help people that I connect with on a cultural level. I am no stranger to the living conditions of a third world country, but actually being able to do something about was so uplifting. From they first day arriving in the villages we were greeted by the biggest and brightest of smiles from both the children and the adults. It was clear that they were happy to see us and knew they we were here to make a difference in their lives. But what touched my heart the most is that while we were working the villagers did not hesitate to jump right in and help us, and for the ones that could not help they watched from a distance with big eyes and curious faces. It was the best feeling I ever had and by the middle of the trip I knew I wanted to do more of this type of work for the rest of my life. I will be back and I will be finding a way to do something like this every year if possible. I want to thank BRP for this amazing experience, it is one that I will never forget.
VENTURE TRIP 03 | SCAD DESIGN SUSTAINABILITY
I was attracted to the BRP internship initially, because I wanted to help out people in need and gain experience that I could potentially use in the future in my career, but i gained so much more. I left the Dominican Republic with new friendships, a greater appreciation for my life, and a new outlook on where I place value in life. It was amazing to witness how warm and welcoming the Batey communities were to us. Everyday since coming back from the venture trip I think about the smiles and laughter of the children we had the opportunity to meet. Their spirit is like no other I have come across yet. I encourage others to seriously consider applying for this internship, because it was a life changing experience for me. Our team worked day in and day out to provide families with solar lighting, concrete flooring, vertical gardens, and homes they can call their own. I was truly humbled by what I experienced on the venture trip. Our director, Katie, inspires me with her passion for giving back selflessly. As a student it was refreshing to be in a real life situation where teamwork and communication were the keys to us succeeding. If given the opportunity I would definitely go on another venture trip.
VENTURE TRIP 03 | SCAD ARCHITECTURE
My name is Jessica Schultz. I am from Brazil, Indiana and went to high school in Charleston, South Carolina. I study Architecture and Historic Preservation at Savannah College of Art & Design as an undergraduate. I want to focus in the reuse of historic/used buildings for new uses in a sustainable manner that is more energy efficient and reduces waste of building material. This was my second venture trip with The Batey Rehab Project. This experience allowed me as a student and a volunteer the opportunity to learn some basic construction techniques with my fellow colleagues, share our ideas, our hopes, our aspirations, with each other and with the BRP staff and these communities. It has been a pleasure working in these communities full of loving and grateful residents. You really get to appreciate the work you have done for these people in the eyes and smiles of the beautiful children and friendly smiles of its people. Thank you BRP for allowing us to embark on such a great adventure. I will take these special memories with me throughout my life and continue to try and spread the love that I have received and have given to these people with others.
VENTURE TRIP 03 | SCAD ARCHITECTURE
I joined BRP because in it I saw the opportunity to help my country, Dominican Republic. I arrived at the airport and was greeted by a group of SCAD students I had not met before, other than for a information meeting. This group of people became my family for the next 8 days. Visiting Barahona, i felt like I was just like everybody else, I was seeing a new place that I had never visited before. Getting there at night, and being a little tired I was not looking forward to waking up early in the morning to work. The next day was filled with energy from everybody eager to work and finally meet all the people from Batey Bombita. At the end of the first day, I thought I had done a lot of work, but none of it compared to all the work we accomplished in the next days. I actually had the opportunity to take out a set of plans and work along constructors and volunteer to built a house that I helped deigned. This moment gave me and insight into what i will possibly be doing in the future, and I really enjoyed it. At some points I would take little breaks. Sometimes I would end up playing with all the kids. It is amazing to be doing something as simple as playing on the streets and seeing how they enjoy it so much. Despite the slight fever, sunburn and exhaustion I enjoyed every minute of the trip. I became very close with some of the volunteers. I think that sharing a passion like what it is helping others, will keep us close for a long time.Through our hard work we were able to help a lot of families, and the smiles and great memories serve as the best reward.
VENTURE TRIP 03 | SCAD INDUSTRIAL DESIGN
I joined BRP this summer to help others, I didn't realize how great of an impact it would have on me. Since I was younger, I have been taught the idea tikkun olam, repairing the world, so finding a career that lets me do that has been the ultimate reward. Until now, I had never experienced such extreme poverty. It's so hard to comprehend how people can live without basic necessities. One heartbreaking moment was having a little five year old ask me for water. Those were definitely the most memorable experiences, the interactions I had with people.
VENTURE TRIP 02 | SCAD ARCHITECTURE
My name is Jessica Schultz. I am from Brazil, Indiana and I currently live in Savannah, Georgia for school. I came on this trip with only a few weeks to prepare. A presentation was given at our school and I was immediately on board. I just had to figure out how I was going to get the money to go. Thanks to my friends, family, and a few bake sales I managed to get to come on this amazing adventure to the Dominican Republic. As an undergraduate architecture and historic preservation student from SCAD, I did not have much hands on experience and this was my first real chance to do so. I had never been to this country and I had no clue what to expect, but I am so incredibly happy that I did. I got to participate in the construction crew, where we helped so many families improve their quality of living. We poured concrete floor for three houses, put a roof up, stuccoed a wall, and as a gift painted the home of the family that helped us out the most, the Director's house. I got to spend quality time with the children and young people of Bombita; tie-dying, crocheting, talking, beading, and letting them braid my hair. Even if our conversations were brief due to the language barrier we were still able to communicate or hold hands through the village. I was and am still in awe of how welcoming and grateful they all were. I love them and I hope for the best with their future with and without BRP.
VENTURE TRIP 02 | SCAD URBAN DESIGN
My name is Peter Salamon, and I am originally from Cleveland, Ohio. As a graduate student studying urban design at SCAD, I heard of this opportunity through the school. I know several people who have gone into the Peace Corps after college, and am always in awe of their experiences. I wanted to help out in a similar way, even if it was only for a week. That week was filled with memories I won't soon forget, as I was able to help construct roofs and floors, refurbish benches, and do lots of painting. I was amazed at the ability to communicate with residents despite only a basic understanding of each others language. The children are especially social and curious, and the interaction with them was maybe the most unexpected aspect but also the most rewarding. The volunteers came from different backgrounds and for different projects, such as construction, jewelry, nutrition, and film, but sharing such an incredible journey really brings everyone together for a common goal.
VENTURE TRIP 02 | SCAD FIBERS
I had a great time in the Batey Bombita community. In one short week it was great to get to know the group we were traveling with, see some of the Dominican Republic, and especially share my skill and knowledge with a group of local women. I taught the women how to make rugs from strips of fabric by crocheting and weaving. I really enjoyed teaching the women and watching them develop and improve their skill set. I hope that they continue to use these new skills to benefit themselves and their families.
VENTURE TRIP 02 | SCAD FURNITURE DESIGN
One of the best days was spending time with the translators and the group going to the mines. It was incredible to see the conditions the mine workers lived in. The mines themselves were terrifyingly small going hundreds of feet into the mountain. It was an experience that really can't be explained only lived.
VENTURE TRIP 02 | SCAD JEWELRY DESIGN
Boricua (pronounced Borikua ) is a nickname given to people born on the island of Puerto Rico. That was the name my colleagues gave me in the Dominican Republic and I’ve liked it since the beginning. The Dominican Republic is an hour or less by plane from Puerto Rico. I’ve visited the Republic a number of times in my life, but never outside the capital city, Santo Domingo. When I heard Katie talk about the trip at the SCAD Student Center I asked myself “Why not? Why not do something nice for someone else without expecting anything in return? What better opportunity than in a neighboring island where I can communicate perfectly in our first language, Spanish?” Without hesitation I started planning, asking my friends and family for help and little by little I saved the money to make this trip a reality. I didn’t know what I was doing. I’d never done a humanitarian trip like this before. However, I felt inside that it was something I needed to do, knowing that it would be an unforgettable experience. Indeed it was. Each day was unique and different. I had the opportunity to learn about the history of the Republic and Haiti. I got the chance to meet and enjoy the lush and exquisite areas of this country. I got to meet a variety of unique and special people, each one with a different story. Everyone had something to teach you. I’m sure their lessons will remain with me for the rest of my life. While I was there, I devoted myself to listening and learning, as these experiences teach you how to be a better human being. I learned that material, external happiness isn’t what matters. One doesn’t need to have a mobile phone or something external to feel happy. What you need is to be thankful for life, to appreciate what you have and to be humble. Even though you don’t have everything you want in your life, God always gives you what you need to be happy and comfortable. Smile and be grateful and satisfied with what you have instead of wanting more and more, because the material things aren’t important. Having people around you who support you and love you is what matters. It's amazing how happy these people in Bombita are, even though they lack what we consider to be the basic necessities. They had only two bathrooms for a community of over 200 people. Their power goes off every day. Many of them lacked clothing and some didn’t have any shoes. For them, this doesn’t take away the meaning of life and their desire to move forward each day. You can’t help but to admire every one of them, especially the children. Their abundance of energy was contagious. I learned that not everything in life is necessary. It’s about adapting, always moving forward and doing your best in everything you do. There were many people I will especially remember. For example: my mentor, Alejandro, a mechanic, goldsmith and builder, a truly multifaceted man. Everything that he did to have his own studio amazed me. All the machines in the studio were built by him. It was awesome! I’ll also never forget Norman, a young and energetic child who stole my heart. He created his own toys to play in the street with his little brother. Another person was Yonathan, a kind person willing to help with everything. He was a hard worker who learned quickly and dedicated himself to doing his best at whatever he did. My companions Osvaldo, Leny and “el chofer”, three boys, always had a big smile, ready to help with everything. In the end it was an unforgettable experience. When it was time to go I was sad and couldn’t believe how quickly the days had passed. In eight days I had endeared myself with many and felt as if I’d known them for a lifetime. I know for sure that in the near future I will meet them again to talk about what’s happened in our lives for hours.