To be responsive to a culture...I have lived through times when we were taught to be culturally sensitive, then culturally competent and now culturally responsive. If cultural responsiveness was walking down the road...what would it look like? I stole and adapted that line from Dr. Desiree Stepteau Watson. So what would it look like? I can learn about the Belizean culture. I can understand the culture. I can be sensitive to the culture. I can even adjust to the culture. It is trying to be me, which includes being an educated woman who loves people of all shapes and sizes and ethnicity and race and education and whatever...anyway, it is hard to be me and truly be accepted into this culture. Of course, tourists are accepted as tourists. Ex-patriots - pretty much stick together. Did I mention that I want to be emersed into the culture to really learn about it? That does not include living here and watching it from the outside or playing the role of a tourist. Suffice it to say that really emersing myself in the culture and among the people requires a lot of trust and the problem I am having is the way women and men treat each other here. I am still trying to understand the relationships and how they work or don't work. I do know that the children are suffering a lot due to the nature of the adult's relationships with each other. Thoughts at the end of the day...I have been into San Mateo three times today - I guess that is why I am thinking. Yesterday I continued to work on the issues from the day before and it became more and more evident that the problems between parents are cuasing so many problems for the children. I am going to immigration with one of the moms from Guatamala who needs to get here papers. She is scared to do but she has two Belizean children - on in our school - she keeps allowing a man to beat her who is threatening her with going to immigration to report her, etc. She needs to be legal. Pray that this works out ok. The Ole Miss students are coming tomorrow and Saturday. I just met another Ole Miss student who took the semester off to help his uncle build a bed and breakfast in Cayo. I convinced him to stay on the island until our students come! didn't take much. I met a couple from Taylor, Mississippi here on vacation.
Love an miss you all.