Guimaras day 5April 27, 2018 on the Philippines ⋅ ☀️ 32 °C
Up at 7am for breakfast at 7.30am. Papa Doy took us one last time to the clinic. This morning’s clinic was prenatal checks. Initially they got us to measure the weight and height of the women, calculate their estimated due date and weeks of gestation and measure their blood pressure. We then went in with the midwife where we got to do abdominal palpation and I was able to teach Lisa about how to feel for the position of baby and measure symphysiofundal height. The midwife told us that they don’t have a sonicaid or pinard in the clinic so they listen for baby’s heart beat with a stethoscope. She kept trying to show me where it was but I couldn’t hear anything. We finished at 10.30, got picked up and taken back to the house. We had lunch at around 12 and then had some time to chill so I had a nap.
At 2pm Papa Doy took us to the gift shop in the nearby town of Jordan. This is run by monks and so all of the money made there goes back into the local community which is great. Here I was able to buy lots of souvenirs and even treated myself to a new bag! Outside there were also some stalls, one of which was run by family members from the Ati people who were selling wallets and purses similar to those that we made in the weaving classes. Here we also got a mango shake which was delicious. We went to go and have a look in the church next door which was very modern and looked similar in style to some in America. Outside we lit a candle for Margie who was one of the chefs in the house who sadly passed away last week. She was only 28 and has a young daughter and it’s so so sad. There is a fundraiser happening online to raise money for a trust fund for her daughter and so I’m definitely going to give some money to that when I get home. On the way back to the village we called at a local store so I could pick up some banana ketchup. We have it here in the house all the time and I love it so i decided to get some. It only cost 23 pesos which is about 30p!
We went straight to the new village where we first went to see how the men do carving. They use coconut shells which they polish and carve into the shape of mangoes and then carved our names into them so we have personalised keyrings. Here we met Jezyl who is 9 and very sweet. I think she wanted to practice her English and so was asking us lots of questions. After this we went to the plaza in the village where we played volleyball (badly) with the children. The game started with only a few of us but more and more came and joined in as time went on. We also played a game of dodgeball with the kids. After this Sherilyn got out a massive vat of rice soup which she had made for the children. They promptly all ran to their houses to grab a cup and spoon and came back to form an orderly line to wait to get their soup. I was given the job of handing out biscuits to each child after they had been given their soup. It was so nice to see the community all coming together. We were also given some soup of our own to have. After this we sat and chilled for a while before one of the elders came over to visit us. She didn’t speak any English and kept apologising to us. We said she shouldn’t be sorry and that it’s us who should be sorry as we don’t speak her language well enough. She also told us she loves to dance and showed us some of her moves (I’m pretty sure she was a bit manic but she was sweet so I went along with it). Sherilyn then told her I’m a dancer and so I ended up teaching her and some of the girls how to salsa. They seemed to really enjoy themselves which was nice.
Next we sat in the plaza and chatted with some of the kids. They were all interested to know about our lives and so I showed them some photos. They were particularly interested in snow and dancing. After seeing my pictures and plaiting my hair, they wanted a dance lesson too and so I did some salsa in the plaza with loads of the children. They all absolutely loved it and were fighting over the opportunity to dance with me, it was super cute.
After this we had a bonfire. All of the kids sat around it and we were sat on a bench. Firstly they all sang us a welcome song including dance moves. Next we got personal thank yous from individuals in the village. They were all saying how lucky they were that we chose to visit them and how we inspire them to work hard. It was quite overwhelming and I cried at a couple of moments, particularly when Sherilyn spoke as she described us as her sisters and said that they don’t say goodbye here, they say see you later. The kids then did another song and showed us their tribal dance. The dances are inspired by animals and so the first one was a bird like movement and the second a monitor lizard. Some of the kids then came and grabbed Lisa and I and we joined in the dancing which was hilarious.
After this we were presented with gifts from the village. The weavers had made us about 6 different things including a bracelet, phone case, pencil case, wallet and coin purse. They’re all so beautiful and I just hope that I can get them home in one piece!
Lastly the kids all came over to us one by one and gave us a cuddle which was so sweet. We had pictures with a few of them and the said our goodbyes. As we were walking away a few of the slightly older boys came running over wanting another hug. They were then all giggling together afterwards so we think they were probably quite pleased with themselves that they got to hug 2 blonde older white girls!
Eventually we got in the trike and headed back to the house where dinner was waiting for us, although we were both still full from the rice soup. After dinner we showered, packed some of our things up and went to bed.Read more