He did recognize that we were in a nicer part of town. He observed some nice houses and apartments behind the walls and gritty dusty streets.
Later, I put the girls in their pajamas and was pleasantly surprised that they knew how to brush their teeth. Widmina's other front tooth is loose too! Then I put them in their beds and they went right to sleep. This was about 8 o'clock, and I was not sure if this was too early or too late for them, but they dozed right off. And of course it seemed much later, because that is just how it is in Haiti. It can be 7 o'clock in the evening and feel like 11pm. L. also started picking up on the Haitian time warp, he asked me constantly on the trip what time it was!
The next morning is when I awoke with the Frankenstien face. Let me explain. In my rush to get out of the house, I accidently packed my deet in my carry-on, and they confiscated it in Atlanta at security. I told the guy, " you do not know what you have just done to me". I wish I could have sent him a picture of my face and my hands after that first night. Strangely enough I could not find any to buy at the airport stores in Atlanta or Fort Lauderdale. I had to hope it was like last time, when I hardly needed it at all. Alas, it was not! Oh well. No one else in the room was bitten like I was. For some reason those darn mesquitos just like me! And I have been taking my meds for malaria, so I should be OK in that respect.The girls and L and I had a great time just hanging out the next day. I gave them each a water bottle, and taught them about Crystal Light, and they loved that. They liked wearing new clothes. They watched Disney's "Cinderella" and they liked that. We sat up on the roof, they watched the orphanage across the street intently. Everyone in awhile, one of the adults they knew from there would come out on the street and they would get so excited! They would yell their name out, but their little girl voices would get drowned out by the incessent street noise. We ate crackers and peanut butter and "goldfish". Lovely untied all the strings off the gift bags from the day before, then tied them together and made a jump rope for herself! I wrote Wid's name for her to see if she had made any progress in school. She could write her "W" pretty well (and she wrote it often!) and she finially wrote her version of her name, which was not really recognizable to me, except for the W and the A, but this in itself was big progress, because 5 1/2 months ago she did not even recognize her name when I wrote it for her. I asked her if she liked her teacher. She recognized the word teacher and smiled and said "professor", and then of course I remembered the kreole word. She then drew a picture of her "professor" with a big jar head, two ears, 2 stick arms carefully counting 5 fingers each, and two stick legs and feet each with 5 carefully counted toes each. She was very intent. Then we did flash cards (super elementery) and I worked on her repeating the English. That was hard for her, she was very unsure of herself. Lovely joined in too. Everytime they could do it I would say "Good Job!" and they would get a big smile on their faces. I drew them each a simple version of a (white) mama in a blue shirt with two little girls with braids and later put in their back-packs to take back with them. Later we went back to the room and I gave them both a pair of kiddie scissors, contruction paper, and a glue stick and Wid cut and cut and pasted until I had a collage about 2" tall! Lovely tried to eat the glue stick, but I said no, and she was OK with that.
Well, they wanted to go swimming, and the pool was pretty cold, but I said OK, so I got out the swimsuits I had brought them, and Widmina LOVED hers. As soon as she saw it she got really excited. We all went out to the pool and decided it was pretty cold, so we just sat on the sidelines for awhile, but L. got in.
The girls really started warming up to their brother and Widmina even started a splashing contest with him!
They did eventually get in the pool with me. Widmina remembered from before, but she still had a hard time remembering to kick. Even better, after they got out, they got back in with their brother.
Finially we'd had enough and went to get ready for dinner. While we were waiting with everyone else out on the courtyard to begin, we heard singing and chanting from the pool area. Then we heard yelling! We peeked around the corner and found that we were witnessing a baptism by a local Haitian Christian denomination. The yelling was when the baptismee got into that cold water. The preacher just kept on praying and chanting. Actually several people were baptised. All the guests at Walls came around to watch (there were not that many of us at that point) the girls, especially my older one, watched very intently. She never tried to ask me any questions about it, maybe she knew what she was seeing, but then again, maybe not.
Dinner was good, of course. L. informed me he liked this food, which was a plus. By this point he was doing quite well. Wid ate like a bird, as usual, and Lovely chowed down and went for seconds, as usual. After dinner we went out to sit by the pool. Suddenly Veniel arrived with approxmately 30 new guests! They all filtered by, a friendly mission group from a midwestern church. Until this point the only people that had been there were me and my kids, another PAC dad, daughter, and the son they are adopting, a French Canadian pastor, a Canadian student that was on his last leg of traveling 3rd world countries, and a middle aged Frenchman that was doing some kind of work for a local NGO. So when 30 people arrived all of a sudden, it was a big change! But that is how it is at Walls.
It grew dark and we were still sitting by the pool. L had gone back to the room to read. Suddenly Lovely starting crying. She was trying to tell me something but I could not understand her, which made her cry harder. Then her sister started crying too. Neither of them could tell me what was wrong and for the life of me I could not figure it out, it came out of nowhere. They had been doing great and seemed very comfortable and happy. They said they were not sick. I looked for someone to translate. Veniel happened by...and they told him something, I'm not sure if he understood and did not want to tell me, or just did not understand, he said "you need to call Marie and find out what to do". Well, I knew Marie was not home, and even if she was, she would not want me calling her over something like this it was up to me to handle it if at all possible. I stood up, holding Lovely, and said "Marie is not home. I'm taking them upstairs to the swing" and that is what we did. I had no idea it was just the beginning of the meltdown.
To be continued...