Creighton brings in students from many different places around the country. One thing that everyone mentions is that “classic Midwest hospitality.” But the hospitality we’re experiencing here in Bethel outdoes anything I’ve ever experienced.
Despite the struggles of poverty and the tough living conditions in Bethel, people have been so incredibly generous towards us. For example, people here have water tanks that get refilled weekly. What that means is that if you use too much water, until your tank is refilled you’re out of luck. As you can imagine, the 20 of us need quite a lot of water and make a pretty big dent in the water supply. That doesn’t stop people from offering their showers and washing machines though. One lady even stopped me today with the sole concern of making sure we had enough opportunities to shower, and I reassured her that we do indeed have at least two different shower locations.
The people of Bethel have also been very generous with their food. We’ve had 3 frozen (but like fresh frozen, still has eyes kind of frozen) salmon, prepared salmon and sheefish (Google it, that’s not a typo), the most delicious salmon dip there’s ever been in the entire world, plentiful snacks and cookies, fresh veggies, salmon jerky (dad please learn how to make this) a freshly salmon straight from the river and eaten 20 minutes later, and even a fish egg pasta (which was so weird but so great!)
And just the people we encounter while we’re roaming around the town. Everyone is so friendly and curious about our purpose, where we’re from, what we study. It’s been incredible just to talk and get to know some of the people here.
A common thread that we’ve been hearing is that everyone loves Bethel because of the people here, and I can absolutely see why why. The hospitality has truly been one of the greatest aspects of this trip and I will forever be grateful that I got to experience it.