Monday, 16 December 2013

Breaking News! the time you read this, I will hopefully have arrived safely in New York City! Surprise!

I don't think it will be this sunny and snow-free, but you get the idea.
Or maybe it's not a surprise. I've probably already told you, or maybe you heard some other way, I don't know. But if by some chance you don't know why I'm flying from West to East coast a week before Christmas, read on...

I met my world-traveling friend Steve through treeplanting last Spring, and he has connections with the Times Square Salvation Army. Last year he spent a couple weeks in NYC volunteering for them, and this year he is heading up a team of Christmastime bell-ringers. The SA is giving the team room and board at their Times Square location in exchange for their volunteer hours, and free time is spent tourist-ing!

The first time Steve mentioned it, I didn't think much of it because I have never volunteered for the Salvation Army before, and I am not involved with religious organizations in general (one exception being Camp Homewood, because it's awesome). However the more he posted on Facebook looking for volunteers, the more the idea grew and took root in my brain.

I love seeing new places, but as a student it can be difficult to find the time and money to travel. I was fortunate enough to land a short-term catering job earlier this semester which gave me a bit of flexibility in the travel funds, and this opportunity to visit New York begins right at the end of exam time and before Christmas. Additionally, bell-ringing is a simple thing that makes a big difference in funding the SA programs for those in need, and I am grateful to be able to incorporate a way to give back and do something meaningful while traveling. Everything seemed to come together to make this trip possible, and I knew I would regret passing it I took it, despite some fears and reservations about wearing the red apron :)

I will write more on the bell-ringing aspect later, and hopefully post some photos while I'm in NYC. I don't know how much time I will be spending on the internet since my time there is short enough as it is, but I will definitely do a couple posts for you when I get home!


kristieinbc said...

Wow! What a great opportunity! I bet you will have some interesting material for your blog after you have spent ringing a bell in the heart of NYC. Enjoy!

kristieinbc said...

That should have said "after you have spent a week ringing a bell..."

Proofread twice, hit publish once - ha!

Jill said...

Ha ha! I tend to forget to proofread at all :)
It was a really neat opportunity, and we met some very very interesting people! I'm excited to get up some new posts about it!