Make ’em Laugh

Our trip to Nicaragua was packed with powerful moments – but this was one of the most memorable for me. It was a reminder of how much can be said without words.

These three children walked with me into the barrio – or slum – where their families live. I asked them to let me take a photo, and they posed for me, looking seriously into the camera. I took a few shots and then suddenly pulled my camera away from my face, crossed my eyes, and stuck out my tongue. They burst into surprised laughter… and I laughed as hard as they did as I took another photograph.

Beyond a few basic phrases, I don’t speak any Spanish – but language isn’t the only means of communication. My silly face broke the ice and showed a little bit of my personality. It bridged a gap between cultures, and provided the basis for an impromptu friendship. A moment later, they grabbed my hand and started running – pulling me along behind them towards their homes in the barrio. They asked to use my camera. They posed for one another. They laughed at each others antics  – and mine. And we got along just fine.

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