From: “Brenda Lange” December 20, 2013 6:10:12 AM CST
DODGING RAIN STORMS AS THE CHILDREN’S PARTY MUST GO ON!
To put on a party here, you have to go “the extra mile”, since nothing comes pre-packaged. You want meat, you buy it on the hoof and butcher the morning of the party. You want rice, you have to organize someone 1 DAY in advance to “de-hull” the rice by pounding the sun dried hulls in a “pillar” (pee-larh) which is a large mortar made from a tree truck.
So my day started at 3a.m., waking up to a pounded rain storm on my tin roof. With a lot of prayer, Praise the Lord!, it stopped at 3:30a.m. So I jump into my King Cab, taking one of my night guards with, to fetch our honoured goat at our goat barn 3 miles up the road. Three men unloaded our “guest” at the Children’s Center, while I distracted our 2 guard dogs (who wanted a goat breakfast). Back at my house, my guards helped me load the 2 HUGE cooking pans, 100 lbs of rice, and all the trimmings into my truck so I could carry them to the cooks at the Children’s Center.
Now it’s breaking dawn at 4:40a.m., and my 3 teams of workers (carpenters, bricklayers, and painters) come walking in to work. We hold a short time of devotions, before these teams start dragging their tools and materials from the warehouses. An hour later, everyone has all they need and are finally settled and doing their jobs. (Bunny takes a big breath to relax after an hour of running from warehouse to warehouse.)
7a.m. rolls around and I think I can grab my “breakfast on a bun” when here comes more workers needing supplies. (organization is not their strong point). FYI: Breakfast is peanut butter with a touch of honey on a freshly baked roll from one of the local baker’s ovens. They bake bread daily in a REAL PIZZA OVEN WITH A WOOD FIRE. It’s totally mouth watering delicious when still warm.
7:30a.m. Carlitos Jorge, our Youth Pastor and my best “goat buyer” calls saying he’s located 2 goats for a good price, and he needs someone to transport them to our goat barns. Got that organized.
Finally get breakfast at 8a.m. (normal time, but remember, I’ve been hustling since 3a.m.) so am VERY hungry and getting a bit cranky. The children have just arrived at the Center and begin playing games.
8:30a.m. Kiddy Clinic starts: A mother brings her child to me whose vomiting and has a high fever, which is how malaria presents around here. (The Hospital is once again OUT of medicines entirely, so I treat this little boy or he is doomed.) He lost his first pills, so had to give him a suppository before he could keep things down. Then took him and his Mom home, as he was too sleepy to walk the 500 yards/meters).
TRIPLET BOYS having a great time feasting at the party.
9:30 a.m. FINALLY I get to the children’s feast in time to play a few games, take a few photos, and pass out the Christmas treats (cookies and candy). Rain storm hits, causing everyone to scramble for cover, but thankfully, we have a HUGE classroom for the party MUST GO ON! Yippee!
All 80 orphans showing off their cookies and candy and saying MERRY CHRISTMAS AND THANK YOU to our donors. They shouted it so loud, it hurts the ear drums.
The kids had a blast, as you can see from the photos. All are super thrilled with the Cookies and Candy they received. If you are wondering why no toys, it’s because they are hard to find and very expensive when you do find them. ($60 is a normal price for a small beach set of buckets, shovels, and a few plastic sand moulds.) This something you’d get for $10 at Wally World.
11:30a.m. Our little Monica gets sick as the party is ending (special needs 3 year old born with an enlarged heart). I took her and her Mom to the hospital, found the Dr. and got her diagnosed (upper respiratory infection). He told me what to give from my medicines, since the hospital had nothing to offer. Good thing I keep a good stock of meds, thanks to those of you who give towards this need, and I’m very grateful that the Dr. works well with me. Did you know you can make cough syrup from SLICED ONIONS and SUGAR? New one on me. Doc told me how to make it. Learn something new each day.
Finally got back to my house at 1pm, to find a 3 foot (1 meter) SNAKE in front of the main door to my house! Yelled COBRA, and my guard came running with his 4 meter snake stick making hash out of that slithering threat with 2 quick whacks! (You can still see the marks on the cement where the snake lay when hit.)
FINALLY got lunch at 1:45pm. (2 fried duck eggs that I chopped up and put into the dish of locally grown rice our cook had made for me). BIG RAIN STORM HITS and I’m thrilled! Cause it gives me a short time of PEACE! My day finally slows down so that I can write a few e-mails!
4pm. Time to wrap up my day by feeding the guard dogs, make a quick supper, and fetch my sun tea and solar shower bag from the “solar table”. That about wraps up my “party day”.
Picture me: Bunny with ears drooping, and shoulders slumped forward, dragging herself in for a shower and a bed.
Now you know why God made Moms with the ability to multi-task. I couldn’t do this job without HIS GRACE in that area of my life! Most of you “Moms” out there know exactly how this feels.
BALAMA DOCTOR VISITS TO “DE-WORM” EVERYONE ATTENDING THE THURSDAY FOOD GIVE OUT
Dr. Fumo, (means Dr. Smoke). He’s a great guy with a BIG HEART for th kids.
Feeding kids and not worms is my well known motto around here. Is great to have a little help from the local hospital.
My friends, I hope you all have a wonderful family Christmas and spend some time thanking our SAVIOR, JESUS for all He has blessed you with this year. Our children pray for you and send their THANKS for all you’ve done to help them this year.
Bush Bunny Brenda and the Balama Staff