Saturday, June 21, 2008

And It Begins.

'Mulibwanje' = How are you?
Thanks to John, he corrected me! There are multiple ways to say hello and how are you. This is one of them. :]

So after we settled into our huts, we explored. Behind our huts lies the bathroom and shower.

The bathroom is on the left, and the corner of the shower is on the right. The bathroom was a hole in the ground with a toilet seat over it. The shower was just a little room. But we had so much fun with them both. More on shower sing-a-longs later. :]

So we continued to explore, and came across a group of children near our source of hot water. We learned that these kids were the children of the women that worked at the lodge, doing laundry and cooking. They were so shy, but curious about who we were. Connee brought individually wrapped Lifesaveres to hand out, of course. These kids were her first customers, and they were very excited.

Eventually, one of the men that worked in the village shop took us around behind the dining area. He said, "You want to see more children? Come with me!" And led us around the dining area to a clearing in the trees to about 20 kids practicing dance. It was incredible, and I will admit, brought me to tears. Each one of them was BEAMING.

Everytime I look at these pictures, I can hear their voices. I feel like that guy in Amazing Grace. These children have SUCH a special place in my heart. They were already special before I met them all, but now that I can call each of them by name, it is so much more real. I can recall a voice, and instantly know whose it is.

After watching the children practice dancing, we left so they could go home for dinner. We wandered our way back to the huts, where two men were playing Baul, a game like mancala. Andrew and I instantly got excited, we knew how to play mancala! But Baul was nothing like mancala, which we quickly learned. The men gladly taught us, Nathan caught on the fastest. I was left somewhere in the first couple minutes of explaining...all the jet lag had caught up with me!

Dinner rolled around, and we had goat stew with rice, green beans, and tomato relish. For dessert we had fruit salad. Everything was so good, but I will admit that I didn't try the goat stew. I heard it was delicious. A band played while we ate, in candlelight, I might add. I could totally get used to that.

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