March 24


On the road again. To the village. We stopped at a hospital in Colombo, a private hospital, very nice and clean. A few of the nurses were accompanying one of the Sri Lankans for a minor surgical procedure. I stopped at the pharmacy and picked up some prescription drugs, they are dirt cheap here. Fosamax which is used to promote bone growth, usually costs about $80/month, in the U.S. that's 4 pills. Here it is $32/year. Hopefully I wont' have a problem getting it through customs. If I don't show up at home in a few weeks you'll know where to find me. In a Sri Lankan jail. (just kidding).

Then we went to the village. We wake up at 6am, try to leave the farm by 7(which is usually)730 stop at the hospital and get to the village at 10. Once again, it's a lot of sitting, in vans and buses. But the ride is always entertaining.

Anyway at the village we took some children to the beach. We are continuing to clean up garbage. My thought is to do what I can to show the children about caring for the precious earth. A few helped. Then we played in the water, of course the children and adults are fearful of another tsunami. We are trying to reintroduce them to the beauty of the ocean. We had water fights, splashing and laughing. It was just one other yellow shirt and myself, we had 8 children. They just love the attention we give them. It was a blast. 2 little girls really tugged at my heart today. One called me her American mommy. Her name is Donica she is about 10 yr old. She wears an old tattered dress, and a beautiful smile. Her house was completely destroyed, she told me her sister needs a backpack, she can’t go to school without one. The next time I to the village, I will bring her one. It’s very touchy bringing gifts. People are very jealous creatures. We have to be discreet or they mob us. But I will fill up a backpack for her and her family.

The other little girl was 2 yr old. Absolutely lasani (beautiful). With curly black hair and big brown eyes. She has the dark circle on her forehead that is a cultural thing done in India. I was holding her and it was time to leave and I starting walking away with her. For a moment I forgot she couldn’t come with me.

In the afternoon I worked hauling rock at the community center. It’s such a slow process. The equipment is of poor quality and there are no bobcats or other machinery. Everything is done by hand. The cement is mixed with crushed rock and water, or sand and water depending on what it is being used for. It is mixed on the street with shovels, no mixer, just small batches constantly mixed with a shovel. Then put in old holey buckets and carried to the site. you put a piece of wood, like a broom handle through the handle of the bucket, one person on each end of the stick and lift the bucket and try to walk in unison. It’s a challenge.

The van broke down again on the way back to the farm. We gave the driver water to cool it off, waited about 15 minutes and we were on the road again. People just stare at us. Laughing, smiling, and waving. We must be such an oddity to them.