They too serve, those who stand and wait

Message for the Day from Judy: “They too serve, he/she who stands and waits.”

Monday, the beginning of our last week, turned grey and drizzly. This is our first rainyish day with the niños. I don’t know if it is a “Monday thing” or the weather, but the children seem restless today. Last week I was amazed at how most of the 2- to 4-year-olds could sit quietly in a chair for what seemed to be 10- to 15-minute time periods. Today they seemed to be more like this age group in the U.S. Last week some volunteers, unused to activity, gave out books. The children love books. They read to each other. Ignacio reads aloud. His favorite book has pictures of animals, and he moos, neighs, and barks loudly to himself having a wonderful time.

The volunteers help the tías by tracing the picture of the day—a cartoonish dog, cat, duck, etc. Today, however, the activity of the day involved the tía painting each child’s hands in turn so the child could make a hand print on paper. After each hand print the child had to leave and wash las manos. The hand washing is in addition to the six or seven mandatory hand washings before and after breakfast, snack, lunch, and snack. After lunch the kids also brush teeth. Also, the tías prepare for each meal by working tables and hoisting tables on top of each other so the floor can be swept and mopped. Between cleaning tables and carrying chairs, sweeping and mopping, washing and drying hands, and washing towels, the tías have very little time.

Meanwhile, today, Barbara and Meredith toiled and tiled. Barbara said, “It’s back, arms, dusty, and dirty. Kudos to these two ladies.”

Jennie, Sue, and Jackie worked at day care center número uno under difficult circumstances. The children eat, have an activity or not, and nap in the same space. Hopefully this afternoon will be better.

Journal entry submitted by Judy

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