swimming in the sunshine

Good afternoon! The kids are outside playing with their friends.

My husband just set off for Chamelco in search of some electrical tape so he can fix the stove (so it will cease and desist in its shocking behavior, hopefully).

I finished mixing up a batch of five-minute bread for our supper. The house is quiet, all except for the tin roof—it makes crackling noises in the broiling sun.

Yes, the sun, oh joy! It hasn’t rained for two days and the chill and damp is finally (perhaps momentarily, but that’s okay) gone.

We are still living out of suitcases, but our made-to-order dressers and some tables arrived this morning. However, since they were made out of wet wood (much to my husband’s dismay), we have to let them dry in the sun for a couple days before using them. One of the tables went into the kitchen so now I have some actual counter space to work with and not just a tile ledge. Another carpentry shop is making us some simple chairs, a bench, and another bed stand, and once my husband gets some wood, we’ll have shelves on the walls. Bit by bit, we’re settling in.

I have so much to write about that I’m not sure where to start. Maybe a list?

*The first night in our new home, our older daughter sat at the supper table, nervously eyeing the gap that runs the whole way around the house between the walls and ceilings, her hands over her ears (her trademark “I’m scared” gesture), watching for strange animals slithering in and dropping on our heads. I, too, was/am wary of rats, mice, and possums crawling through the cracks, but I’ve made no mention of that to the children, of course. (The mouse that slipped in under the door last night is no longer of this world, glory be.)

*We are surrounded by boys. The owner’s grandsons live in The Big House: José is 12 and Fernando is 7. José speaks a little English. Both are very friendly and eager to share bikes, ping-pong table, etc.

One of the other families that lives on the farm, some long-term missionaries, have four boys that they homeschool. Their names are Jorge, Joaquin, Andrés, and Marcos. Their ages range from 9-13, I think. The boys are adopted and speak both Spanish and English. Their family runs the fish farm and they just gave us a frozen crab. I’ll boil it for supper…I guess?

*The 10-15 minute walk to Chamelco is peaceful and beautiful. First we have to walk down our long, curving, dirt/mud/rock/pothole-filled driveway, and then out through the bougainvillea covered gates. The main road is paved and lined with hedges and flowers. People are constantly walking by. Most of them are cheerful—actually, “jolly” is a better adjective—which surprises me. I expected that they would be more reserved and somber.

When I was writing, the kids came bursting through the door, wanting to go swimming. They said the pond was shallow and that the boys’ father was down there. I gave them permission and then, camera in hand, followed them down. (So much for my list.)

They—eight boys and two girls—were out on the water, boating, paddling, swimming, and yelling.

The entire pond was only a couple feet deep, thick mud lining the bottom. It’s one huge water-filled playground.

The pond has tilapia in it (and the neighbors gave us some!)—when the kids swim, the fish just hide in the reeds.

Some of the boys went to the far side and climbed the tree to jump in.

After an hour of racing, splashing, and dumping each other, the kids climbed out of the water, shivering and begging for towels. Now, back at our house, they’ve had showers.

showered, in fresh clothes, soaking up the setting sun

As soon as my husband finishes fixing the oven, I’ll try my hand at some homemade pizza.


Leave a Comment