Thank you for accompanying us

Mud walls uphill and downhill, on foot or mule, for hours and hours, without knowing what will be the next obstacle, with the risk of slipping or falling, not knowing whether you meet on the way a friendly face or an enemy, whether to smile or to avoid.
In doubt, better to avoid.
Very high level of concentration on the way.
Careful not to miss the travel companions, especially the ones we accompany that are equally careful not to lose sight of us, since our presence increases their level of security and given their care about us as well.
We who are not accustomed to this kind of paths and this kind of climate, ignoring in addition the risks hidden by the wilderness.
Despite the further concern we represent for the people of the Peace Community, accustomed to "fly" on the mud and run on these arduous and endless paths, we continue to be a significant value added for them.
Every time we stop, they repeat "thank you for accompanying us, thank you for accompanying us".
And they continue to seem heroes to me, not to idealize them, but to be honest and to make real a word that by now, in this world, it seems can only be filled with virtual meanings and special effects.
Instead they are small but strong, physically and morally, they are tenacious like the cabuya (a thread that cannot be broken), they are strategic in pursuing the good, they are persevering, they do not give up, and they work, day after day, as tireless ants to sow and harvest food and life in immense places.

Indeed, they want to show us their lands, distant from each other, but vast and wide as the rest of the breathtaking territory that surrounds them. They are proud of them because they know that they are struggling to protect them from the most short-sighted and reckless interests.
At every step, however, the feeling of being followed, seen or controlled by illegal armed groups never leaves them. The worry about being in a disputed area - always somehow surrounded, whatever veredas or village you are - is constant. Whoever greets them on the way today can stab them in the back tomorrow.
And when I hear them talking and I learn about the complexity of the surrounding context, I wonder, "why don’t they take a shortcut once in a while, like others do here?" And the answer comes to me immediately, I read it on their faces: they chose to be righteous, not to be crafty.
Trying to be righteous in this part of the hemisphere, being part of a great Community of people to relate to and account to, means carrying on your shoulders a flood of treasure, variety and human beauty, but also of responsibility, thoughts, worries and toil.
For this reason, I am amazed by the attention they always give to us, but the more I go on, the more I realize that this is the norm: the extraordinary nature of an experience like the one of this Comunidad de Paz becomes ordinary in its exceptional character.
And we all feel united, like the characters of the Fellowship of the Ring, willing to make a journey into the unknown in order to guard the lives of those who have understood how the secret of existence does not consist in the lust for power that corrupts the human soul, but in the respect for creation in all its forms.