While a bit sad this morning, I just started reflecting on the fact that in our Western culture, we try to shield ourselves from natural life events, but in the village I visited this weekend, the hand of death and suffereing is part of daily life.
When I get a scratch, I have clean water to wash it out or antibacterial cream to clean it off. If it gets really bad, then we have clean hospitals to visit. For the friends I've made this weekend in the village, that's not the case.
I have so many new friends, and unfortunately, they know my name a lot better than I know theirs. They gather around in crowds. Smiling. Holding my hand and laughing with one another. They are some of the happiest kids I've ever met, but if you looked at them, they're dirty, their teath are rotten and their bodies are covered in scabs.
All of the children, even the smallest toddlers had scars and scratches. They climb the palm trees for coconuts and scratch their hands, but without the proper care, the scratch turns into something bigger. But... you don't hear any complaining. It's just daily life.
There are no computers, tvs, video games, or really any "children's toys" but they are so happy.
In a place so deprived of the "essentials" or basic Western necessities for survival, there is life. A fulle, more complete, well-lived life. In the slice of one day, there is fullness.
Some joke about living on "island time" and the inconvenience it provides when activities don't start when they're supposed to, but there's something nice about living with no rush.
They don't look at their clocks, impatiently waiting for the next activity, rushing from one thing to another.
After 3 days in the village, I'm happy to get back to the comfort of a bed and no bedbugs. I relished in the delights of a shower and electricity.
Breakfast with one of the village families.
Mitch with some of the kids.