Friends

There are nine Creighton students in this trip’s program – enough for a baseball team. I think we’ve ended up somewhat like the bunch from “The Sandlot.” I can’t assign a character from the film to each program participant. But, we’ve spent our summer (at least part of it) in the dirt (of Uganda) spending each day out in the field (but not baseball field). We’ve formed a team (but not a baseball team) out of a ragtag bunch of individuals who would otherwise pass each other on the mall without any clue of our compatibility. And, just as a guy in the Sandlot was never replaced when he moved away, each member of this group is irreplaceable. 

 

My blogs have largely focused on my encounter with native Ugandans and South Sudanese refugees. But, this program and my experience would be incomplete without the Creighton students with whom I traveled across the world (and Nile). In the process, I’d say we’ve become pretty close. They are each wonderfully and beautifully quirky. And I want to share some of that quirk, so what follows is just a glimpse into their awesomeness: 

 

Ben plays Just Dance with his two younger brothers; their favorite song to dance to is some German song (I forgot the name). He is also prone to wandering in airports, especially if tempted with an ice cream shop (such as Coldstone) or a store with touristy apparel. 

 

Andrew prefers gummy bears to gummy worms. When he was younger, he put gummy bears in his ice cream so that they would harden and played with them as one would play with toys. He also loves crepes and can quote PBS Kid’s “Arthur.”

 

Jacob bottle feeds lambs and knows all the words to Childish Gambino’s “Sweatpants” (and a lot of other songs). He imitates the flight of a butterfly with surprising grace and fluidity. 

 

Zach carries around a Mexican flag in his backpack no matter where he goes. He is more observant of signs and billboards than any other person I have ever met. 

 

Matthew ruined a field trip to the zoo for his classmates when he told them that the elephant was circling with its head tilted due to mental instability caused by its captivity. He also plays Call of Duty with Denver Nuggets players. 

 

Izzy is a FANTASTIC writer and, as a kid, checked out 10 books (the maximum number you can check out) each week from her local library. She has a dark sense of humor revealed in her rizzles. 

 

Nat might be growing a parasitic worm in her stomach right now but loves that worm with all her heart (as with all things) despite the intestinal issues it causes. She can fall asleep ANYWHERE. 

 

Brick can make a tastier apple pie than me and is great at Go Fish and two-person solitaire. And although not great at soccer, the fact that he even tried makes him braver than I will ever be. 

 

Here’s to my new friends! 

 

Friends, if you’re reading this, THANK YOU and know that “I’ll be there for you (When the rain starts to pour)” (the Friends’ theme song) even if it pours as hard as it did in the middle of Sharon’s first interview. 

Elizabeth Rudigier

About Elizabeth Rudigier

My name is Liz(zy) – your choice. My mom cannot stand the name Liz (which is odd since she named me), so I give the option as a courtesy for those of you who also have a particular dislike for the name. I am from Stilwell, Kansas, and majoring in Medical Anthropology with minors in Spanish, Theology, and Journalism. Despite not lending itself to a tidy pre-professional track, I study such a hodge-podge hoping to better understand our shared human condition.

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