June 18, 2010

The Journal: Hammer Time

The Dalai Lama is often quoted as saying if you can't do good at the very least do no harm. So when my son Cadeʼs youth group from the Palisades Presbyterian Church scheduled a trip to the Campo Indian Reservation to build three homes, I jumped at the chance to spend time with my son and do some good!


A group of close to one hundred adults and children spent the Memorial Day weekend in a desolate but quite beautiful piece of land around sixty miles east of San Diego in the high dessert just north of the Mexican border. I used to “bang nails” when I framed houses for a few years after I got out of college, so I was in my element.







The work was hot, dirty and hard but what a fun time constructing those homes with a spirited group of kids and adults. The silence of the dessert was broken by the laughter, shouts, and thumping of rock music from the vans sound system. My son and his buddies were quite impressed with my Zen hammering technique! Thumping the 16 penny nails in with samurai sword like strokes. Its rare that I impress my son so I was really happy.The small joys of parenthood.


There were so many photo ops with all the kids and amazing light that I made myself a little crazy until I decided to just grab my camera only during water breaks. Trying to wear it around my neck and take quick snaps between hammer strokes definitely didnt work.





If you have a Habitat for Humanity in your city, I would highly recommend taking some time and helping out on one of their projects. At the end of the day, when you see the results of your hard work: you feel quite good inside. So do some good and feel some goodness inside!!! Sweet and Simple!!