Monday, February 13, 2012

Around Can-eo

It was a full day hiking to Chapyosen and back, but that was not the end of the day. When we made it back to Can-eo Station Church where we were staying, Bridget had fish cooking. Together with some rice, seyote, and the Rice Krispies treats we had brought, it was a tasty supper. After supper was a Bible study at the church.

Pastor Rudy asked if one of the girls would like to lead the Bible study for the evening. Adriana and Alexie coordinated a message and a dance that would compliment each other. Alexie presented the dance and then Adriana taught about God's power and loving presence in our lives.
Adriana teaching during Bible study at Can-eo Station Church
Pastor Rudy translating Adriana's illustration
After Bible study, several of the young ladies wanted to practice with Alexie so together they could all encourage the rest of the church in the morning.
Alexie teaching dance steps to the girls after Bible study

In the morning, I showed Pastor Rudy how to make a rocket stove.
Making a rocket stove with Pastor Rudy before church
While we were upstairs making the stove, Adriana, Alexie, Alayna, and Annalise were downstairs teaching Children's Church. The children listened as the girls read the translations of the Read Aloud Bible Stories and sang songs with them.
Reading stories
Singing songs
Weaving is a talent that the girls of Can-eo learn at a young age. So it was with much interest and skill that the children learned how to weave bracelets from our daughters. Throughout the day on Sunday, our girls were seemingly always teaching someone how to weave a certain pattern. It began as soon as Children's Church ended.
Adriana teaching bracelet weaving
During the service that followed, Alexie, Alayna, and the young ladies who had practiced the night before presented their dance for the congregation. They all did a great job, especially considering they had just began learning it late the night before.
Above All

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I took advantage of the opportunity to use the Proclaimer in my teaching on Matthew 25. I enjoyed the interaction with the congregation as we discussed the stories Jesus told and their applications.
Thomas and Pastor Rudy following along as the Proclaimer recites Matthew 25
At the conclusion of the service, we introduced the rocket stove and invited everyone interested to join us at Honnak's house after lunch where we would install a solar bottle-light.
Explaining the rocket stove
After lunch we headed to Honnak's house to install a bottle-light. While I worked on that, more weaving lessons took place.
Karin Joy and Alayna talking weaving
Looking down from Honnak's yard
Preparing the bottle-light and teaching how to do so
I was glad to have Pastor Rudy and another man join me on the roof (no scary ladder this time). This way, I could guide them through the installation so they will be able to repeat it in the future.
Installing the light in Honnak's roof

Honnak is a widow whose grown son, Romeo, lives with her. Unfortunately, tragedy has been a part of their home in many ways so she bears the burden of providing for them both. I have visited her home and prayed for her and Romeo before, so it was a joy to be able to bring a little light to the cooking area of her small home.
Thomas and Honnak outside her door
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A look around Honnak's house and a walk down to the river

From Honnak's house, we walked across the river to visit Ochawan in the sitio of Fankeg. We wanted to visit with her, pray for her, and Alayna was excited to give Ochawan a pair of slippers she had crocheted. It was good to hear that she is feeling better and is no longer fearful.

Ochawan was happy to meet our daughters. She was especially taken with Annalise, encouraging her to eat more camote so she would get brown skin. She said, "Even when you're all grown up, continue to come see me."
Alayna giving Ochawan her new slippers
More weaving - Jane and Alexie
The scheduled jeepney was not running this weekend, so we rode with Pastor Rudy to Can-eo and were planning to squeeze into his little truck with his family for the trip back to Bontoc. It was a tighter squeeze than we expected since three students also needed a ride back, making a total of 13 people. But the kids all chose to ride on the back and enjoy the beautiful scenery.
A truckload

A Light for Chapyosen

We spent much of Saturday in the village of Chapyosen.  In order to get there, we rode through the mountains to Can-eo and then hiked a little over an hour along the river to Chapyosen.
This washout is under the road to Can-eo
After arriving in Can-eo, we needed to pass through two sitios (neighborhoods, of sorts) before beginning the hike along the river to Chapyosen.
A typical house in the sitio of Favfey
Along the way we passed people going about their work. This young man was returning from gathering firewood; over his shoulder was a bundle of wood and strapped to his side was a machete.
A workingman
My last attempt to hike to Chapyosen was foiled by the typhoon and the active landslide that had wiped out the trail. The old trail is still blocked, but now that the slide is no longer active, a new footpath is being created by people packing the soil as they hike over the slide.

We are so proud of our girls. The hike was over an hour long in the sun. In many places, steep grades and loose soil made for tricky trekking and a few slips. Yet, there was never a complaint.
Hiking over the landslide
It was a beautiful day for a hike and the breeze helped to reduce the heat of the sun. Still, when we reached Chapyosen, we were a bit tired and thirsty. We had underestimated the amount of water the six of us would need. We chose to be thirsty until we made it back to Can-eo where we had clean water rather than risk introducing any friends to our intestines.
A well deserved break
Weekends have little meaning for farmers so most of the adults had gone out into their fields for the day. But the arrival of visitors, plus the excitement of our girls twisting animal balloons, brought the children to the house where we were resting. After a while, Alexie and Karin Joy, one of our guides, read and taught from the Read Aloud Bible Stories to the children and mothers that had gathered. They all asked to hear stories again.
Balloons and Bible stories
Karin Joy and Alexie
Alayna and a new friend
Everything can be a toy
Seeing the boy with the firewood and the children caring for their younger siblings in Chapyosen while their parents worked in the fields, reminded me of the difficulties of living in mountain villages. Later, the boy below was chopping wood for the rocket stove with his sister on his back. Lisa and I both noticed that when we were giving out balloons, none of the children asked for another. Neither did any of them cry when their balloon popped; often they would re-inflate what remained of the balloon.
A brother's love
After resting for a while, I introduced the rocket stove. They will be able to use the one we left for them as a pattern to make more.
The rocket stove boiling the camote treat we had later
Making sure the fire is still burning
Then we prepared a solar bottle-light.
Thomas and Alayna preparing the bottle-light for Espirita's house
Annalise smiling because she got Daddy's hat
Lhany smiling from the porch
The ladder I used to get on the roof was about as sturdy as other homemade ladders I have been on, but this one was a little shorter than I preferred. Had it sunk into the ground at all as I climbed, it would no longer have reached the fascia of the roof it was resting against - not fun! But everything worked out and the dark room below now has light.
Installing the bottle-light
A highlight for the girls was when Karin Joy took them to a waterfall nearby. It is really tall and they enjoyed the cooling mist it provided. Each of them is looking forward to the next time we go and hoping to be able to get soaked by the falling water.
The 4-As at the waterfall in Chapyosen
After a snack of camote, a native sweet potato, we hiked back to Can-eo. But that is an adventure for another post.

Grace,
Thomas