Thursday, June 19, 2008

The Big Day Has Arrived.

We arrived early today and found the school the same as we left the afternoon before. The rocks for the fire pit were where they had been piled late yesterday. The lamb had been butchered however.

It is one of those rare days when there was hardly a cloud in the sky....Everything was going to be just fine.

We had a few hours before the guests would be arriving so we got to work. I had four volunteers ready to help so we all went off in different directions. We wired the "Command Center" for electricity, cleaned the rooms and sports field and were moving the rocks to the area where the fire pit was being dug, as the first guests started to arrive.
The families and friends have arrived and while the oven was being readied, snacks were served and everybody was happy.

The pit was lined with rocks and a fire was built using wood from the Capolin tree which burns very hot.
When the fire burns down the coals are removed and potatoes and habas (a kind of Lima bean) in there shells are placed on top of the hot rocks.
The lamb is placed in the center. The pit is covered with corrugated tin and then covered with earth.

We are now ready to start the program as it will be an hour before we will uncover the pit.

Let The Show Begin

I was not able to take pictures of the first part of the program as I was too busy trying to exact my will on the young performers. Maria Antonia took a video of the program and as soon as it is available I will post a link here.

The program started with the singing of the national anthem of Ecuador in both Kichwa and Spanish.
Followed by "Fight of the Numbers" a skit performed by the children ages four through six. Here they are waiting patiently for the show to start.
They did an exceptional job and it was hilarious.
The next part of the program was presented by all of the students, young and old. It was a tribute to all of the volunteers who have worked here at the school for the past two years. There have been 20 different volunteers and they have come from nine different countries. We called this segment "Volunteers On Parade".
Each country was honored by playing the national anthem of the country while one child carried the flag and placed it on a post, which we called the Flag Tree. Following the flag another student carried the picture of the volunteer and placed it on the map of the world, where we had located hooks with strings connecting to the countries from which they came.

When the parade was finished, Luis, the director gave a little talk about how even though the distances were great it was really a very small world. We ended this part by singing in English....It's a small world after all. We had a few hitches but everyone got the message.

The final act was traditional dances performed by the students and led by Fabiola who has been working with them since January


This was probably the hottest day of the year and Jesica was glad the dance was over.

The pit is opened and it is time to eat.

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