Saturday, November 17th
Today I got back from immersion. This is where I spent the night with a mama and her family in the village. I really had the most wonderful time. So we (me and three other girls) met our mama on Friday afternoon at 2PM. Because our mama did not live really close to the base, we got a ride to her house. It was so beautiful when we arrived. She lived on a steep hill leading down to the ocean. The hill was covered in houses and she lived halfway down the hill. The hill was so steep that the roof of her house was in line with the foundation of the house above her. And the base of her house was in line with the rooftop of the house below her. This being said, she had the most amazing view of the ocean!
I will tell you a little bit of her story. (We know her story because she works for Iris a few days of the week and one of the staff she works with is my group leader.) She has two kids of her own who are now in their late teens, but while she was living with her husband one of her sisters died so she took in her two children. The only issue was that her husband was not too happy about the kids so he told her it was either them or him, but she could have have both. So she left, taking the kids with her. Iris was there to help her. They built the house we stayed in. And just a few week ago another one of her sisters passed away so she brought her four little children to live with her. Her family was so welcoming and wonderful. Of course, the little kids are quick to fall in love with you while the older ones hold back a bit more. By the end, we were good friends (even though we could not speak the same language!).
We arrived a bit after 3PM to her house and after she showed us around we took a trip to the well. I got to carry the bucket of water on my head ... ha ha ha this was so hard. Not only to keep the bucket on my head, but also keep the water in the bucket. All the mamas and the villagers were watching, cheering and laughing me on. It took me a bit of time to get back to the house but I made it. And yes, my neck and back hurt, though thankfully once I stretched out a bit I was great!
We spent the evening relaxing in the shade of her house, visiting with her neighbors, and painting the girls' nails. We ate an amazing meal and went to bed. I slept with one other girl on a daybed. It's like a wooden frame with ropes woven across it. Though I did not sleep the most amazing I ever have, I was happy that I got quite a lot of sleep. There was a chicken in their house but it was in the other room, as were the mice we heard running around.
Of course, one gets up with the sun, which is at 4:30 AM. This is really not that early being that you go to bed with the sun as well. Well, not quite with the sun for it goes down at 5:30 or 6:00 in the evening, but we go to bed a few hours later. We took a trip in to the village market to get some bread and sugar for breakfast. Let me tell you, they put so much sugar in their coffee and tea! It is like drinking a cup of sugar!!! Ha ha ha. Again we spent the morning relaxing in the shade of her house. I braided one of her daughters' hair, African style. Well, there is really no other way to braid it! I was so proud of my ability; it turned out so good! Ha ha ha.
We taught them some worship songs in English and they taught us some songs in Makua. We prayed with them and blessed them. After lunch we had to go, for our ride was there to pick us up. The Mama invited us to come to their church on Sunday, but sadly we are not. I would love to come, and go [to their church], but it is not going to work out. Anyways ... That was my wonderful overnighter in the village.