Saturday, January 31, 2009
Friday, January 30, 2009
They had no idea who the Easter Bunny was. (Imagine growing up thinking that Jesus was the purpose of the holiday?) I grew up with the Easter Bunny and have colored my share of eggs. But it was clear that they did not get it as I tried to describe that cultural tradition.
There are parking meters in Manila and someone said they have seen them in Baguio, but most of the students here have not traveled much out of Mountain Province. They certainly have never had their own car to park. So it took a little describing with some of them about the purpose of such a thing.
So until next time, See ya later alligator! (I guess that might need some explaining, too.)
Wednesday, January 28, 2009
I have updated the link on this blog, but to save you the effort of moving your mouse way down there, just click here: ywammountainprovince.wordpress.com
Monday, January 26, 2009
Okay, really it was Little Miss Annalise sitting on a couch
Eating her curds and whey,
She wasn't eating yet but rather waiting for Ilocano lesson to end so she could eat some pizza
Along came a spider,
A great, big spider
Who sat down beside her
It did not really sit down beside her but you would think so by her screams
And frightened Miss Muffet away
She was actually too scared to move or say anything - all she could do was scream
Fortunately, when Thomas opened the door for our visitor, she kindly walked out. But she did spend several hours at his sandals. We were hoping she was not considering wearing them home herself.
Sunday, January 25, 2009
Saturday, January 24, 2009
"What about the people?"
"Oh yes, but some white people too. Some white people who were born here."
After coming home from having dinner with the Korean outreach team...
"I like making new friends. The only trouble is we meet them and then we have to say goodbye."
This week, as the two of us were walking to the market...
"I don't like walking down the street because everyone stares at me."
Later on, when she was with Thomas and I, we went to a restaurant for some fried chicken to take home to have with our rice and green beans but the price was too high.
"I wish they would just say, 'If I can touch your daughter's hair 6 times, you can have the chicken for free.'"
Just some glimpses of our life from our 6-year-old,
The next surprise came when it was announced that Garden of Grace Girls Academy was closed for a "snow day." I know those of you back home dealing with below freezing temperatures are grumbling and thinking we are once again going to be whining about being cold here but the truth is when we returned to Bontoc with our fleeces, it was so warm we no longer needed them. No snow other than the window cling snowflakes sent to us and the paper ones we made, so really it was just a day for fun.
Minutes before we were taking pizza out of the oven (the first item cooked in our new oven), friends arrived to wish Adriana "Happy Birthday!" They all enjoyed a game of Twister and then joined us for an All-American birthday meal of pizza, popcorn, warm, just from the oven brownies topped with cookies and cream ice cream.
A special day for a special young lady!
P.S. Adriana was not the only one celebrating a birthday on Monday but "Turning 39 in the Philippines" did not seem quite as interesting of a post. The truth is since the most labored over and precious gift Thomas received for his 25th birthday, his birthdays have not been quite as exciting. Rather than enjoying the fun of our "snow day" he was responsible and went to minister to the police officers as part of the Moral Recovery Program. He did make it home for a short time between meetings to join in for some of the e-birthday party and enjoyed his favorite treat of ice cream that night. His focus, as it has been for the last 14 years, was that Adriana enjoyed her day so he shared his ice cream when he really would have loved to eat the small tin himself and made the delicious pizza we enjoyed.
Thursday, January 22, 2009
It is such a blessing to receive letters and packages. They remind us that we are not here on our own; that people at home are thinking of us and praying for us.
Thanks so much or as our Filipino friends say "Salamat!"
Tuesday, January 20, 2009
It was funny though. When I purchased the stove, some of the guys from the store brought it to the entrance for me. There was a miscommunication, so they brought it to a different door, than I had expected. When I found it, one of the guys was standing on the sidewalk with it. The van was very close and I started to grab the stove so I could help carry it to the van. He insisted that I not worry about it, but that he and his partner would get it. Before his partner came down the steps, Steve walked up and started to grab it. The store clerk never said a word of protest and he and Steve carried it to the van. Is it just the kindness to foreigners or do I look that inept? I may not be an auto mechanic, but I thought I could carry a box...Hmmm?
Tom and Lisa
After a yummy dinner of chicken adobo, both groups gave cultural presentations. The SSM students and native YWAM staff played the gongs and performed some of the traditional dances. It was fun to see many of the Koreans jump in and give it a try. Afterwards, the Gimpo team shared their dances and dramas. After they completed the fan dance, the students called for an encore.
Monday, January 19, 2009
I have mentioned Pastor Rudy several times. He is the pastor of the church in Caneo. He and his family live in Bontoc and serve with YWAM. His family goes to Caneo a couple times a week and live there through the weekends.
Afterwards, I had the opportuninty to talk with some of the kids. I have some pictures from our outreach on my mp-3 player. So when I was talking to these girls, I said that I probably had pictures of them. As we looked at the pictures, they laughed and called out the names of their friends and neighbors. But what really touched me was when they saw the pictures of my girls with them and they could name each of my girls. I had not said anything about them or even mentioned their names. We have not been in the village since October of 2007, and then only for a few days! I was once again reminded of how God is using our whole family to reach people.
On the left is Pastor Rudy's youngest son. On the right is Mindel. She and Pastor Rudy were a tremendous help to me in coordinating this trip.
You may remember my earlier post about freezing my flip-flops off. Well as you can see, we were pretty cold in Caneo. Jackets, layers, and hats were common. Pastor Rudy's wife, Bridget, even decided to wear a couple blankets.
When we were here in 2007, we made bunk beds and a table for the church. Since we had only one saw to share between several men and projects, I used the down time to carve a new handle to replace the broken one on the church door. Soon after we came back last year, one of the TDTS students who had accompanied us on the trip to Caneo mentioned the handle and said how she remembered me everytime she saw it. It's funny how little things can leave an impression on people.
I did not get to walk around the village much during this visit. My responsibilities kept me close to the church. But I did get to watch some of the weavers at work.
Before the team arrived, Lisa and I had spent the morning marketing for groceries. We were actually still in town at the market when the team arrived.
Soon we were on our way. But we did need to make a short stop in order to discuss the top load with the police. I guess you are not allowed to ride on top of the jeepney while still in town. Although we often see people doing so, it probably drew more attention with my white skin and the fact that we drove right in front of the police check point at the main intersection.
Anabel is located in a river valley. The road is steep and only goes so far. From where the road ends, it is 20 minute hike to the village. The first part of the hike is down a steep stairway.
Then there is the bridge. A couple of the young ladies on the team froze in fear part way across it. But they were helped by their compassionate teammates who bounced and swayed to help the bridge more than normal. In the end everyone made it across.
I tried to capture a little of the feel of the bridge in the video below. The decking is landing strip decking left over from the war. You can hear the noise of the bridge as it squeaks. You can see the water running below. What you cannot see too well is the motion of the bridge as I walk across.
A sampling of what is supporting the bridge.
On Tuesday, the team had a time of worship and intercession then went around the village praying. One of the sites they stopped at was the high place. It is here that many from the village still hold pig sacrifices before planting and again before harvesting the rice.
As I looked at the tree, I was reminded of the hollow promises the enemy offers. I also thought about how his kingdom is rotten and little more than a facade that will one day topple.
As I walked through the village, I learned about sugar cane farming. Like most villages, the walkways are narrow. Here, many of the walkways are lined with sugar cane.
Some of the men were harvesting the sugar cane. I tried to help by binding the tops which they cut from the cane. They laughed a little and one of them tried to show me something about the stalks, but I could not understand what he was trying to say. I have become accustomed to being laughed at for doing anything. Sometimes it seems the people here are amazed that we can do anything other than teach. "You can cook?" Laughter "You can say something in Ilocano?" Laughter But this time the laughter was because they had an important bit of information I did not. It seems that sugar cane has small, irritating little fibers that imbed themselves in your skin. They are almost impossible to see, but you can feel them. That is probably what he was trying to show me. Oh well, it was worth the little bit of pain to try lending a hand.
I did not get to see it in action, but that contraption in the middle of the picture is the sugar cane press. Later they were going to hook up the carabao to operate it. (The carabao is the one on the left, not the cutie on the right, and not the chicken in the foreground.)
Here they are boiling the sugar cane juice down into molasses. The boy in front is enjoying just chewing on the sugar cane. (Stripped of all of those annoying little fibers, of course.)