Dear Mervi, it’s a tough day at LLI today and we’re all a little sad because you’re leaving. For past eight months you’ve been a great asset to LLI since day one. We are all amazed at how seamlessly you ran the volunteer household with a firm yet friendly attitude. You’re independent, dedicated, patient, affable and immensely organized and have inspired, and touched almost everyone in the house with your presence. We’ve all seen a strong leader, passionate person and an excellent soccer player in you. It is extremely hard to say goodbye.
Please remember that here at LLI you’ve made friends for life and we all have something special to say to you :)
Heidi: Mervi, you’re the heart of the volunteer house of LLI in Huaycán. Before my arrival you helped me with a warm welcome letter, giving good instructions and saying that LLI is greatly looking forward to my arrival. You’re very organized and it was so easy to start the brilliant journey to volunteer work in Huaycán.
You’ve been taking care of the volunteers with warm heart and with genuine concern. You always had time to answer questions and talk and as well as ask, how things are with warm and unhurried way. You’ve excellent tips on how to travel in combis and collectivos, where to find coffee (I’m Finnish, we love coffee :) ) and Peruvian food and how to go to the Market. I had excellent time on the delightful and gorgeous trips you organized. I’ll never forget the time when you took volunteers to have a delicious cake in Chacacayo.
You’re punctual and strict in a friendly way to keep the volunteer house in order. The life in volunteer house would not run in an order with out you! You know a lot of things and are able to talk international affairs and speak many languages; you’re very smart person with a kind heart and a good sense of humor.
I am so glad that I got to know you, Mervi! Thank you for all care, advices and wonderful conversations in my journey in Huaycán! Hope to see you someday in the near future. Have a fantastic trip! Love, light and rainbows.
Katie: Mervi, you have been such an amazing office buddy and travel buddy! I will miss so much our conversations about politics and culture, our camaraderie over coffee filters, and you being the DJ when we go to Chaclacayo for hamburgers. My favorite memory with you is when we went to Chinatown together and then got stuck in that colectivo with that ridiculous driver; despite the iffy ride home it was such a wonderful day. Please please please don’t forget to post photos of your travels because I can’t wait to see where you go next! And maybe next time we’ll see each other in Finland or Colorado ;)
Charlotte: You are such an impressive person, I have no doubts that you will continue to do wonderful things for people and just generally seize life! You’ve a great competitive streak which is fun to see at soccer (which you’re a beast at) and when we were gearing up for the combi scavenger hunt.
We will miss you around the house, best wishes for whatever comes next!
Ennisofia: Mervi, I admire your passion towards combis :D, and how you’re such a reliable person to whom it is easy to talk to. Also it is unbelievable, how you have the map of Lima in her head, respect!
Christine: Even though we only overlapped for a few months, Mervi, I’m so sad to see you go! Thank you for helping me get oriented at the Teen Center and in Huaycan, for letting me tag along with you market shopping that one time, and always having good advice when I am frustrated or need help.My favorite memories with you, Mervi, are solving the puzzle in the Teen Center (you’re is so dedicated and patient!), and playing soccer on Sunday nights (it was always a good night if you were on my team!). Our house and LLI family will not be the same without you! Safe travels and have an amazing post-Peru adventure!
Sally: You came to LLI when I was about a month into my stay. You were so quick to figure out all the details of running the house and an asset to everyone from the beginning.
You remember the day we went to the mall to get some baggy pants that the other girls were wearing? Neither of us was comfortable wearing that style and couldn’t figure out how baggy was cute and how baggy was just down right frumpy! We certainly got a big laugh out of our day shopping.
So dear Mervi, you were always upbeat and a calm soul in the house. Thanks for that! If you get to Colorado, please look me up! Have fun on your next adventure!!!
Keeley: The funniest Mervi memory of mine was from a few months ago. It was a volunteer meeting, and somebody announced that a few of our volunteers would be leaving the next week. Everybody at the table said “Awwww” except for Mervi, who waited until the the “Aw” was over, and then said, “Well, some other people will be coming to replace them, like always” in the most matter-of-fact, non-emotional way. Everyone thought it was really funny at the time, the lack of sentimentality, all business.
Isabelle: That time you very literally associated me with a Kangaroo and that other time when you didn’t kick me out of the house for losing my house key, again! Goodbye and good luck Mervi! I hope you’ve loved your Huaycan adventure.
Sofia: Mervi, you’re a key member in presenting Finland in our community in Perú. It is good for the foreigners to understand that people of Finland do not find their silly jokes amusing. (Just kidding… possibly). You take care of the house and the people; you’re totally dependable, wise, and very much to-the-point. One can definitely tell that you have lived in Germany for many years… ;) Remember the MERVIL cake? :)
Tamara: Mervi, you have touched my life! Your companionship was and will continue to be precious to me. I know you will continue to do wonderful things!! Raise your glasses to Shawn the Polar Bear! My best memories are you and I hanging out on the rooftop in Huaycan talking and talking and talking.
Lara: Mervi, you will be missed here! I have been so happy to have you here in Huaycan for the past 8 months. You’ve become such a part of our family. Thank you for your hard work with the volunteer program, the amazing anniversary celebration and all the RUC work :) haha I know you won’t miss that…!