After all the background organizational stuff I’ve been doing, I finally worked my first shift as a volunteer welcoming new arrivals into Munich last night.
It was a wonderful experience – so many grateful people who gladly took the clothes, food and drinks we offered them. Such a great team of people who worked hand in hand despite the fact that they’d never met before. And such a caring city in which the donations to be handed out just won’t stop coming.
When I got home I was so tired I was sure I’d sleep as soon as my head hit the pillow. But when I lay in the dark, all the impressions from the night came rushing back and I lay awake for a good hour reliving what I’d seen.
The little child who beamed at us when we offered him food.
The man who told us how wonderful every single person in this city is.
The anonymous baker who donated a huge bag of freshly made muffins.
The man who told us he needed coffee because he is a poet and poets need coffee all the time.
The few Arabic words we learned to get by.
The couple who had just arrived, holding hands, who looked just like any couple of young travellers. Except they weren’t.
So much sadness, yet so much love. So much despair, yet so much hope.
What a night.