Sunday, April 20, 2008

El Día del Niño

I apologize again for not keeping up with this blog weekly. I have been waiting to post because I wanted to add pictures to this entry. But it seems everytime I try, I´m on a computer with a non working USB port. So I will write this now and add the pictures later.

El Día del Niño is Kid´s Day in English. Its not entirely different then Mother´s, Father´s,or Grandparent´s Day in the states. Its simply a day to celebrate kids being kids. I think the US should adopt this holiday! The date was April 19th, a week ago yesterday. The festivities actually began on the Friday before. Never is a holiday here restricted to 1 day! All the schools celebrated as did the physical therapy at the hospital. Viviana left that day with a balloon in hand.

Saturday my team was split into two groups and assigned to our two orphanages. The first home decided to take their kids to the water park. Can you imagine a waterpark on kids day? Yeah, we couldn´t even get the car near the entrance. We had to drop them off a couple of blocks away. The report after that was ¨That place was insane!¨ But the kids had a blast and thats what matters right?

My team went up to the home in Villa Israel and we took the kids to the play ground. We had some games planned like:
A clothing relay

Three legged Race

and the all time favorite, Water Balloon Toss. I got a kick out of what I call the water ballon bandits. Cute huh?

After an hour in the blazing sun, we went back to the house for some treats.

In the afternoon, rather then having the Super Saturday ministry, the main ministry (what we normally just call the Center) had a fair for the kids in the community. I was manning one of three game booths. I had the mini basketball toss. My friends had the ring toss and ¨bozo¨ buckets. The kids had a blast with facepainting, prizes, and treats. I was nearing exhaustion but I was glad to help. I literally ran out of there in order to get ready to attend a wedding reception.

Sunday the festivities continued. Rather then have our regular program for the kids in Sacaba we simply played games with them for an hour. And of course, treats were a given. One little girl, Nylin, has adopted me as her favorite ¨leader.¨ Every week now I have her in my arms. She kept repeating a word to me last week that I didn´t undertand. I asked a spanish friend and she didn´t know it either. She thought she was mispronouncing another spanish word. When I said the word to my tutor she simply said ¨Quechua.¨ Oh, now that made sense. What I thought was ¨marcame¨ in spanish (I thought it was some kind of command form) was actually mark´away in Quechua. The little girl is only 4 and wasn´t pronouncing the ¨k´¨sound that would have told me right away that it was Quechua. Anyway, in Spanish the equivilant is ¨levantarse¨ or ¨pick me up¨ in english. Thats a rough translation anyway. Apparently I pronounce Quechua words very well, my tutor is bugging me to take Quechua after Spanish. I told her one langauge at a time. My spanish still has a long long way to go!

So that was El Día del Niño in Cochabamba. Next week: 6 month update.


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