After a morning with the toddlers and lots of bubbles, the girls and I did nails. I like doing my own nails, but I love having someone else do them for me. Jessica obliged with an orangy-pink color that I don't really like. Oh well. At least it keeps you from seeing how dirty my nails are by the end of a dusty day in Fort Mercredi. She had been rather indifferent to me earlier in the week and I think she decided to make up for it on Thursday. First the nails, then she took all my dirty clothes and washed every one of them even though I told her I didn't need most of them washed since I had to leave in 3 days.
Jessica loves doing that sort of work for people. I remember a day last year when Jessica offered to clean my bathroom for me. I told her that she didn't have to clean my bathroom, but she said she likes to do dirty work. "In that case, I'll get some mud and make it really dirty for you before you clean it," I joked. "OK," she answered seriously. Sure enough, that Saturday, she sent Nounoun and Stephanie Jeannis out to find mud so that they could really dirty up my bathroom. And when they were done, Jessica scoured that bathroom top to bottom. I have the whole thing on film. It was a crazy day.TiJude had hurt his foot when we were coming home from soccer on Tuesday afternoon. It was slightly swollen and bothering him enough to make him limp on Wednesday morning, so I wrapped it for him and gave him some pain meds (the real kind as well as the candy kind). He went to the doctor's with one of the nannies later in the day and the report was, "It's not broken." Thanks. I knew that already. Apparently that's all the doctor told the nanny and then he sent them home with a prescription for pain killers.
TiJude's ace wrap had come off during the day and one of the other boys had worn it briefly on his knee. TiJude reclaimed it, but then didn't know how to put it on himself. When I came over to the boys' house on Thursday afternoon, however, his ankle was wrapped. It wasn't the neatest or tightest, but it was done correctly. "Who wrapped your ankle, TiJude?" I asked him. "Job," he said, and Job came over, a little bashfully. We rewrapped it together, a little snugger, but I was really proud of Job and I told him that he was in charge of the bandage from now on. Fortunately, TiJude's ankle was not bothering him anymore on Friday afternoon, so he won't need Job's expertise, but we're ready for the next boy who twists an ankle.
After their soccer game, I got a shot of the victorious team (Argusto, Acheley, Jacques, Miscardet, Daniel, Peterson, and John Peter). The losing team (Mathurin, Bernadin, Jefthe, Dorval, Degraff, Drisk, Mackenson) would not pose for a picture. I yelled at them and pleaded with them, but they just would not stand together. I finally gave up and marched off the field.
Jefthe came running after me. "Take my picture, Kez," he said. Trying to pacify me or just loving the camera?
I led devotions at the boys' house on Thursday evening. We did Psalm 105, the first group Bible study from the prayer journals. The boys took it all very seriously and participated in the discussion, reading out loud (Jacques, Daniel, Acheley, Renick, Argusto) and answering my questions (Jefthe, Mathurin, Daniel, Drisk, Emmanuel). I had not brought journals for the 5 NLL boys who live with our HFC boys because I was afraid that the content would be too hard for them to understand. When I explained that to them, they asked me to read a few of the questions from the journals to them. I did, and they immediately exclaimed, "We understand that! We can do it. Please let us participate." So I gave them their own journals too and told them to ask the older boys for help if they didn't understand something.
After devos, the boys and I hung out, just chatting. I told them stories about the wildlife museum where I used to work and all the animals that I took care of. They were especially amazed by the owls and the porcupine. A few of the boys were looking through a soccer magazine while we were talking. Job grabbed my arm - "Kez, here is your husband!" He pointed excitedly to a photo of soccer player Mahamadou Diarra. "Um, Job, I can't marry him. His last name is virtually the same as the word for diarrhea in Creole. I really don't want to be named Keziah Diarrhea." Job insisted, so I guess I'm engaged.
And my favorite quote of the day: I was telling the boys how I kiss frogs whenever I catch them (it started as a dare to find my Frog Prince and it just sort of stuck). Bernadin looked at me, absolutely horrified. "You kiss frogs!?!?! Well, you're never kissing me again!"