I’ve learned that if you ever need help here at ISH-DC, one doesn’t have to look hard to find it.
My first cry for help was last month, and it was quite an embarrassing story to recollect. On Saturday night, I walked to a sandwich shop to order something to-go, and since I only brought my wallet and keys, I had put both of these items in a plastic bag which the sandwich shop provided me. Then, I walked home, opened the door, and proceeded to the TV room to sit and enjoy my dinner. After I finished, I cleaned everything, and without thinking, accidentally threw away both my wallet and keys.
Forwarding to the next day, I discovered that I couldn’t find my wallet, and it suddenly dawned on me what had happened! I had thrown my wallet out with my trash! I screamed nooo as I frantically ran downstairs to the TV room, but I found out the trash had already been cleared.
Without thinking, I changed clothes, went outside to the dumpster, took a long, deep breath, and yes, I climbed into one of the dumpsters outside. I never knew that I would EVER have to do this in my life. However, the point of this completely repugnant story is that there were ISH-DC residents crazy enough to help me out. My fellow residents handed out disposable gloves, translated a description of my wallet in Spanish to the cleaning lady, and found my wallet! I’m happy I got my money back, but I’m even happier that there were people who voluntarily helped me with desperate situation.
And then there was another incident that happened yesterday. One of my most valuable possessions is a gold cross necklace. I had lost it, and the moment I found out it was gone, I became very sad. While I still haven’t found it, and it hurts every time I think about it, one thing that made me happy was all the support my fellow residents gave me. One person told me at dinner that she would pray for me. Another housemate looked everywhere in the TV room while I was having my front desk shift. And a third person told me not to lose hope.
All these sweet comments, these thoughts, these interests and prayers: they help a lot. I am sad I lost something so important, but my sadness immediately fades away thinking about all the support my fellow residents are giving me. Since we are from all around the world, we are always helping each other here at ISH-DC. Obviously, my dumpster story is one-of-a-kind, but we are always there to help each other if we can. For example, I see English speakers helping out housemates with grammar, other roommates help by carrying luggage of new residents, and this morning I caught a housemate making a sandwich for her sick roommate. I love that you’ll never ever need to worry if you live here and I only wish to be half as helpful and nice as you all are to me.