Yes, I did need some nachos today. It is funny how when I need nachos, I need nachos! I went to school this morning and worked very hard to be able to take off by 1 p.m. to go to immigration to deal with my work permit and visa (more on that later). I have been eating oatmeal every morning - so by noon, I am starving. I missed lunch trying to get stuff done (more on that later too). I was walking down the beach and the sun is blazing hot today - little breeze and it is like a sauna after all the rain. I was parched and very hungry. I got to the internet surf shop and kimberly came outside. I told her - "I need nachos." I got the biggest plate of nachos I have ever seen. I ate it for lunch, gave some to Ernesto when he came by awhile ago, and still had enough for supper. I have not talked about drinking lime juice...it is the best for what ails you. Really - stomach ache, dehydration, hangover...good stuff. So lime juice and nachos for refueling....
Today at school - I walked in the door and did not even get my coffee before "F" was brought in by his teacher - age 5 yrs. - already had a discussion with his mom about not having him come to school or go home through san mateo by himself. She has had one disabled child removed from her home that she targeted with abuse and neglect...now she has turned on "F". He comes to school late and hungry and missed breakfast at school as he is late. So this morning - he is crying his little eyes out - just sobbing. He finally tells me that his mom twisted his arm hard - he showed me on my arm - and jerked him around awhile this morning. He had no breakfast - missed it at school. His arm is so little as he is so skinny. Luckily it wasn't dislocated or broken. I wanted to go twist her arm or more....I didn't find her - she was MIA from home this morning - but I will find her. We went to the kitchen and Ms. Rosalia found him a biscuit and juice. When I walked him back to class he just clung to me...he cheered up and went to class - the resilence of these children is awesome - just a little attention and they are good to go - ususally.
I had a break through or divine intervention with the little boy I talked about yesterday that I can't seem to reach. Let's call him "D" as I am sure that he will appear again. D was sitting alone at the picnic table next to his classroom - just looking sad and staring into space like usual. I just sat down across from him and said oh...D...what makes you so sad? (knowing it is his mother - or lack of - and his worry about her). He just shrugged and said nothing. I told him that I care that he is sad. Still just nothing. So I just sat there with him in silence. Then I don't know why but I started drumming on the table with my hands - the cadance from when i was in the marching band and played the drum (family members from Papillion will know the beat). He perked up and said "do that again". So I did. He said "teach me that." so we took it slow and I taught it to him. He actually smiled...then another little boy "J" (the one that his dad was getting on to him for perfection - #1 in his class - that dad told him he was proud, etc?) anyway, "J" came and sat down where we were drumming on the table and began to drum - only "j" can drum like the garifuna drumming - quite well. I was impressed. I asked the boys if they like drumming - they just lit up. then Mr. Cruz came by and got interested in our drumming - he can drum and played a tune on the table and sang a song to it - a gospel song. I asked the boys - would you like to do drumming after school? D was excited as was J. I told D - "If I can find some drums and someone to teach us - would you do your work every day? he just shook his head yes. I said "really D, if you do not do your work you can't come to drumming" He said "I would do my work to do drumming." Ok - now I have to find some drums - garifuna - hand made drums - and a teacher. I think we will have standard I drummers - I have about 12 boys from standard I on my case load. Divine intervention...now to convince Ms. Francis....
One stomach ache after another today again - no other symptoms. Francis told me to go gather up all the stomach achy kids and take them to the poly clinic - well...not going to happen...over 200 or more hurting today? so I called the Poly clinic and asked them to please come to the school and give the worm treatment to every child. The are coming a week from Friday. Argh. at least they are coming. The nurse said maybe we need to have the inspector check the water where they live...you think? they live in san mateo. hello. this deserves a "whatever..." then what? tell them they live in unsanitary conditions? - there is no water to most homes and no sewage system except to dump sewage in the water under their homes...I guess I have said that more than one time. I am very happy that the can come and treat the kids.
The 4 heathens want to have drama practice tomorrow after school. They say they have this play worked out. We will see the preliminary product tomorrow. They always want stuff from my office. today it was the star stickers...I had some t-shirts I found laying around that someone donated and they had a fit over them. One said you know I didn't get a birthday or Christmas present and I thought she was playing me but the others said no she didn't her mom doesn't believe in Christmas and anyway - her mom left her and her dad was too poor. I know they are very poor and her dad is trying his best. Her sister was back in my office today too. she is another hard one - she just shuts down and stares at me. We just hang until she feels like she can handle class again.
I got my visa. The process...I was told to fill out a multi-page form that I had to buy from the only stationery store here that sells them. ( This involves tracking down the form...) I had to have 4 passport photos ready. I got to the immigration office and there was a long line. I said "ok - first timer - what is the protocol?'...I was told where the end of the line was. Wait, wait, wait....one at a time...then it is my turn. I go in and tell the "one" lady - that I am volunteering for 5 months at Holy Cross. She says I have to wait for the man behind the wall and he is busy - so go back out and wait. When the man gets done - (he didn't have anyone leave his office) she goes in to ask him about me and he tells her that i do not need the work permit - that is only if i am here for a year. Just do the renewal of my visa every 30 days. I called this office to ask in the first place) - then she tells me that I am too early that I could come on Feb. 1 as I came to San Pedro on jan.2. Ok - Feb. 1st is sunday. today is January 28th - If I go on Feb. 2 I am too late. Two days and she wants me to come back on Friday. She is arguing because I will loose two days. I have already lost my afternoon of time. I finally convince her that I will just loose the two days. I gave her $50 BZ and I can stay another 30 days. Francis is not going to be happy as she said that if I had a work permit it would be better - she thinks I am probably going to piss off some public officials before long...why would she think that? :o)
Biggs came by awhile ago. He is getting tourists to go snorkeling with his hew job. He has been busy. Ernesto came by but he is working tonight on making sure the RO? system is ok - where he works they have their own salt water to usuable water system. then he called and he was working on a boat. I was going to take some Canadian friends I met on a tour of the island in their golf cart - let them meet Butch and Marlin but she got sick with the stomach crud or maybe to much partying with Jerry Jeff Walker last night. We didn't go. I am going to sleep early. The sun wore me out today.
Ben- I have been listening to my colt ford music...love it - especially meet me at the waffle house and there ain't no trash in my trailer - all his songs bring me back to mississippi. Rap and country together- if you ain't into that - i don't give a damn! (that is one of his lines for those of you who have not been introduced) loud, proud and country by the grace of God...I know amanda is going - please - no! David - did the ice storm hit you?
Love ya and miss ya!