There's a young boy I'm helping to learn to read Creole. He has a few challenges, but he's doing great. Right now he can read almost any word in Creole...given enough time.
We started to learn the capital letters this month. One day I wrote the names of several Bible personalities on the little white board I use. We looked at them one by one. One of the names was God. Jandarin read the name after a few tries. (It's much more complicated than in English.) After he read the name, he paused and looked at me. "What does God do for people?"
Here's a kid who is living with kind folks who have agreed to help raise him. They don't do a lot more than keep him busy and out of trouble. He doesn't go to church because he has no good clothing. He's just drifting and growing up.
What a beautiful question. "What does God do for people?" I took some time and explained the story of salvation for him.
I love my job. I was thinking of this the other day. No one tells me to go to work each day. No one threatens to fire me. I could just not work any day that I choose to do so. But, most days go by with only moments of free time.
"Thanks, God, for the chance to be here doing what I do."
The new fever. It's all over the tropics, they say. It's been all over our town. The people who have NOT had chikungunya are hard to find. I spoke to one the other day.
I had it a few weeks ago. I still have pain. It started one morning. As I got out of bed, I felt like I had sprained both wrists. As I tracked the fever, it never went very high...only 101 or 102. There was no head-ache or dizziness like with malaria. But the pain! Wow. They say the word is an African word that means 'bend body' or something like that. The joint pain is real. I pretty much cried a few times myself, like many others. It was a funny cry...extreme pain, but kind of a silliness because there weren't any other symptoms. Some folks have had higher fevers. Some get swollen glands. Some get a rash and are all itchy. Not me. Just joint pain.
Yesterday at church I was amused to see a lady try to clap only to stop because her wrists hurt too much. Been there, done that. The guitar player grimaced as he tried to turn his left hand under the fingerboard of his guitar. Been there, done that too. A 22 year-old keyboard student walked away from the keyboard after a lesson, and she walked like my 92 year-old aunt. I've done that, too.
Right now the pain is nearly gone. I've heard folks say you can get the fever again and again. Ouch. And these mosquitos are like others. They like to bite during the day.
Here's to the end of mosquito season. :)
Well. Internet is here in little Pasbwadom, it's true, but it is sometimes a trickle. My computer had bad hick-up a few weeks ago resulting in the better of my two browsers being lost. That limits the number of web pages that I can access. This one is 'out of bounds'.
I've been busy teaching and translating. I have three remedial reading students in the mornings now. I added a young girl who has never finished the first grade. She's about 10. She's very quick, and should learn to read Creole in a matter of weeks. It's a different story for the two young men I've been helping for some time now. They have very slowly overcome some real handicaps and are reading better and better.
During these times of limited web-connectivity, I have been able to stay in touch with the NBA playoffs. I was delighted to follow the San Antonio victories over the Heat. I'd love to watch the games some day. It's only partially gratifying watching the scoreboard and one-line explanations of what just happened on the court. They do throw in some tweets from informed people that are quite interesting. (LeBron just threw up his shoulders as he looked at his bench...what more could he do?) But, that's how we follow basketball here on the southern peninsula of the poorest country in the western hemisphere.
Soccer? That's different! I bought a TV and an antenna so that we can follow World Cup Games here at my house. It took us a while to figure out the antenna. For the first few games, we could see players, but not the ball...too fuzzy. Then we got things figured out and we now see the ball. Still, if a team wears green uniforms they pretty much disappear into the green fuzz of the field.
The sound isn't clear, but it's only the sound of some Haitian guys watching a TV and calling the game. They're not great. Lots of emotion and very little information. It reminds of what would happen if you put a mic in front of guys at a bar watching a game. Wooooooooy! Ayayay!!! Gooooooooooooooooaal!!
Missionary in Haiti.