Friday, July 27, 2007

Friday's Fun

Troy has a huge amount of information to write up and pass along. He did get lots of answers and clarification today, some of it is a bit overwhelming, some a bit discouraging. He'll write to share all he learned before the end of the day Saturday.

Troy has this abscess type thing on his neck. He called Lori for advice yesterday. She gave him some good advice. Tonight he and Britt were ignoring her and poking around seeing if they can make things worse. My favorite thing he said yesterday ... in all seriousness -- "Gosh, this bump ... it is ... it is just driving me crazy ... it's just there and hanging off of me -- I'm so constantly aware of it." I paused the appropriate amount of time and said,

"Uh-Huh, I have no idea what that would be like. I can only imagine."

The beach/pool was fun today. I took zero photos -- sorry Aunts and Grannies. We had the pool to ourselves a lot of the time. We went the cheap route and smuggled in M& M's, cheese and crackers and Noah's favorite- COLD hot dogs. Paying the fee to have their plate full of noodles, potatoes, rice and mystery meat is like a knife in the heart of this Dutch girl. I cannot do it. No one even likes the food, we just eat it because it costs so much. Today's plan worked way better.

The only truly entertaining thing that happened was between Isaac and some people he met.
First, you must know that Isaac is by far one of the friendliest five-year-olds you can meet. He is agreeable, easy-going, never pushing his way onto someone else. He trusts everyone, thinks all of humanity are certainly good and interested in knowing him ... he is blissfully unaware of the reality that mean and unfriendly people exist. It is SO true that even when someone is mean to him, he does not notice.
It's a nice little bubble he lives in - we're mostly happy for him. Our only concern is convincing him that trusting strangers implicitly could lead to big problems... a lesson we keep trying to teach him.
Today a boy, about 10 or 11 years old, walks up to him and says, "Take those water wings off and come swim with me."
Isaac, always happy to oblige, takes off the wings and jumps in with the kid. The kid appears to be Haitian, his English is perfect, no accent can be detected.
Here are snippets of what we overheard-
Kid- So, where do you live?

Isaac- In Minnesota.

Kid- I know Minnesota, I am from New Jersey.

Kid again- Oh, so you're just visiting Haiti too?

Isaac- Yeah.

Kid- (Pointing to Britt) THAT is your sister?????? (incredulous)

Isaac- Yep (ignorance is bliss)
Long pause -- swimming together

Kid- THAT is your sister?

Isaac- Uh-huh.

Kid- How can she be your sister?

Isaac- Because my mom is white. (pause) I am adopted!! (positive announcement)

Kid- Oooooh.

long pause

Kid- So, you're an orphan?

long, long pause - Isaac thinking it over ...

Isaac- well ..... I did came from and orphan-age.

(Again, Isaac cannot be insulted -- he has no idea what the definition of an orphan is -- nor would it occur to him to say "NO - I am NOT an orphan - I just told you that is my mom!)

The kid leaves shortly after that. He was wearing a red suit, Isaac played with him 15 minutes total. About ten minutes later another kid in a light blue suit jumps in the water near Isaac.

Isaac- Hey, are you the guy I was talking to earlier - I don't remember.

We asked him later why he said he lives in MN, when in fact he has lived in Haiti for 18 months. He shrugged and said "well, I am FROM Minnesota" --- Britt said, "You know you are technically FROM here, don't you????" He shrugs again, jumps into the water.

I have a very real (and well founded) fear that this boy may refuse to come back here after the maternity break. He really does not think of himself as Haitian --- at all -- or ever.

Meanwhile, Hope gives everyone who comes too close to her the stink-eye. She does not trust a single stranger. She sends a vibe that says "If you don't know me, don't try talking to me."

The very last funny observation out of Isaac came towards the end of the day. The largest Haitian man I have ever seen came walking out to get in the pool. He was easily pushing four Franklins. The man was very loose - jiggly really.

Isaac, watching him closely, talking only to himself, says "Huh, THAT GUY has some biiiigggg muscles.Oh, yeah, he does and he has a mustache just like Papa's."

(Turns, looks for me, and yells) "MA - doesn't that guy have the same mustache as Papa?"

Whatever you say Isaac. (Dad - I think Isaac misses you. The comparison was a stretch.)

Not sure if you know this ... Arnold Schwarzenegger celebrates a birthday on Monday, July 30th. His claim to fame; he was born the same day as me.

Before I go ... an early birthday gift I just received --- that must be shared -

From some of our best friends in the whole wide world ... every time we see a new family photo we just sit and stare and analyze and grin ... they make us happy. Their daughter is ALSO a Haitian that is now FROM Minnesota ... and if Isaac has anything to say about it - she'll never come back here.

With Love from Haiti,
(Where some of us live, some of us are from, and some of us are just visiting.)