Supplies, Supplies, and Cries

Trip Start Feb 20, 2013
Trip End May 09, 2013

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Flag of Philippines  , Eastern Visayas,
Monday, March 18, 2013

Hello Everyone,

I spent my entire day in Cangumbang, which was a nice change from all the running around I have been doing lately. It was quite an eventful day, but exciting nonetheless.

In the morning I sorted some clothes donations at the center with one of the volunteers before heading out to Cangumbang with three of the volunteers, including Ellie Smith who is here for 2 months from my hometown. When we hopped on the habel-habel (Motorcycle transportation with a makeshift bamboo roof). It was quite a squeeze with the 4 of us and the driver, a good cultural experience in all honesty. I sat atop the gas tank right in front of the driver, and the other girls sat behind him nestled in tightly.

As always when we arrived I first took pictures and said hi to all the workers, children, and families. The construction crew had already began mixing cement and were working on filling more of the holes. They were able to fill in the foundations for the columns by the end of the day today. We were already nearing the end of our sand supply, so by lunch I was back at the hardware store ordering more truck loads.

I helped fill rice sacks with gravel and sand to be mixed in the countless batches of cement with the children and volunteers most the day. We took a break before lunch to hand out the clothes and the children all loved them. Some of them strutted around in them the remainder of the day, while others clearly put them at home to save them for a special day. Pretty much all of them got something, even some of the mothers received some tops.

For some reason the children were feeling extra dramatic today, and I can't say it was due to the heat because all morning the weather was actually quite mild. It started by two little boys around 8 years old fighting over a straw of all things. The children yelled to me that the two of them were fighting and I told them to stop, which helped for a moment. But before I could actually make it over to them one of them threw a few punches, striking the other right on the temple. I ran over and pulled the "puncher" away and told him to go home. And then I scooped up Nathan who was screaming by that point and carried him to his mother, while one of the other children went to get some ice. Nathan calmed down significantly after I held ice on his eye for 10 minutes or so and he was back to playing and helping. The other child stayed in his house most the day, and when I visited him later he was clearly ashamed. Although I still told him if he was going to fight then he wasn't going to be allowed on the project site.

Later in the afternoon JonJon, the little boy who has developed into my constant shadow at the site, kept falling down somehow whenever he was not by my side. So I was called by the kids to console him and clean him up. Luckily he wasn't actually injured and he perked up quickly, but he was having a pretty accident prone day.

Not long after lunch my back was aching and I tried to take it easy to the rest of the afternoon. I helped hold the bags for the children as they tirelessly shoveled them full. My friend Tonton also stopped by in the afternoon to show the children the movie Ice Age via a projector in Nanay Elay's house. It was a good treat for them after all their hard work. By the time the movie finished the new materials were delivered so the children were back at it, helping us fill the rice sacks and transport them from the road to the site.

We got almost all the sand moved before it was nearing 5 pm and I had to go back to the hardware store before it closed to pay for another round of coco lumber supplies. The hardware store we have been purchasing everything from is going to have quite a good month from our business I think. ;)

More work tomorrow pouring cement, hopefully forming the first few columns of the building.

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Sawa on

yay Ellie made it!

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