Sunday, August 12, 2012
I enjoyed every minute of sleep last night post madness in the dining hall. At breakfast, Sr. Loretta gave us some very important details that everyone failed to inform us of. Apparently the brothers who kicked the speakers and injured the teacher have a brother who is a teacher. It’s against his religion to dance, so the teacher was upset that the school was allowing the students to dance. Thus, he sent his brothers on a sort of mission to destroy the equipment. In their attempt to ruin the speakers and computer, they hurt Lucy. So that was the source of action that unfolded into a huge disaster. Lucy was doing better today, icing her mouth and taking Motrin.
We walked and sang all the way to church, carrying our flower crowns and necklaces for the procession. I was absorbed in every second of the mass. The ceremony is so beautiful and the congregation takes such care to make it a special tribute. The Aligegeo students sang like angels in the choir. There were two processions with traditional music and dancing. Fr. Moses said the mass because Bishop is traveling. During the closing announcements, Cayla and I were called onto the altar. Phillip and Simon presented each of us with a wooden cross inlaid with shells. I love it, and the cross will serve as a perfect reminder of my time here. There was kai kai (food) for the students after mass, so we joined our friends.
I walked home to Fanulama with everyone. We ate pancakes and peppers before our excursion to Buma. Fr. Moses drove Cayla, Sr. Loretta, Sr. Matilda, Agatha and I to Buma, a village in the south. It was a bumpy ride in the pickup truck to our pristine destination. There is a church, school, clinic, and several religious communities where we stopped. We met Daughters of Mary Immaculate sisters, and the Sisters of Charity. The Sisters of Charity, founded by St. Vincent de Paul, are Croatian. The three of them, Sr. Kathy, Sr. Martha, and Sr. Clare, arrived last year and all work as nurses in the clinic. Their kindness was overwhelming. They hugged us and held our hands and it was like they were squeezing love into my soul. Sr. Kathy gave us rosary beads, which was so appropriate. We pray the rosary every night and I don’t have my own beads here. The rosary beads are from Medjugorje. It is really special to have a token from these women who I only spent a few hours with. It’s unbelievable how someone can affect your life significantly in the shortest span of time. I would love to return to Buma some day.
Cayla and I made fast friends with Pius (Pio), a little boy, who was full of energy and surprisingly not afraid of white people! He gave us a full tour in his birthday suit. He collected a variety of sticks for me, showed us the baby Jesus in the church, and munched on beetlenut the whole time (so basically this 2 year old was high the entire time). We also met Fr. Lorenz Samani, who spent six months in America during which he spent time at Kellenberg and at Providence. Buma is on the water and the scene was picturesque. All too soon, it was time to leave. We said farewell to our new friends. On the drive back, we belted the hymns out the window and Cayla captured the madness on her camera. We just watched the videos and got instant six packs from laughing so hard. Fr. Moses bought us each a soda on the way home.
We exercised when we got back to Fanualama. A whole crew joined us in the conference room. Cayla and I finished preparing a dinner of breadfruit, eggplant, peppers, chili taiyo, and pineapple. We invited Christina over for dinner. All of us enjoyed ourselves and the meal. Cayla and I gave Christina a gift for being so kind to us, and also it is her birthday on Tuesday. We compiled a necklace from the market, one of my Serengetees, a skirt of Cayla’s, a few scrunchies, and a note.
When she left, Cayla and I showed the sisters pictures of our family, friends, and home. Then I had the brilliant idea of testing Photobooth out on them. The camera distorted their faces and uncontrollable laughter ensued for the next hour. Every shot is a gem, and if I am ever sad I will look at these ridiculous pictures.