I haven't written much about them, but the refugee family we sponsored is doing very well. I won't go into details, because it's their life, not mine, but Fiona and I have been pretty involved with them, especially since coming back to our village full-time when school ended. The mom is expecting a baby in the next couple of weeks and we've talked a lot about health care, delivery, emergency services, cultural practices around birth and all that stuff, and how it varies from here to where they lived in Africa. The upshot is that Fiona and I have committed to being in the delivery room with her as friends and personal supports, as "stand-ins for Somali sisters." Fiona is very excited, having never attended a birth, and I'm excited for her too; it's a great privilege. I'm very happy to be doing this, as I have the medical background, can I think do a good job of putting English medical terminology in terms that are more easily understood by her, and have a good relationship with the family.
So we have that on the horizon, but the timing is awkward because I have 9 days of 16 to 18-hour days of work coming at me as the Suzuki music camp starts in about 48 hours. I cannot imagine what is going to be required if we suddenly have to leave town for 12 hours in the midst of this! Ah well, I keep reminding myself that I am not as indispensable as I like to believe, and that I'm dealing with an absolutely lovely, understanding, caring bunch of families. Truly, I cannot imagine a nicer self-selected group of 250. If baby comes during camp, I am sure we will all cope.
A crazy thing happened when we were visiting with our Somali friends the other day. One of the other support-people was there too, a friend in her late 60s. We were chatting and this woman mentioned that she and her husband were trying to talk their 12-year-old grand-daughter into coming along with them on their trip to the Galapagos in January. I said, incredulously, "What kind of person needs to be talked into that kind of a trip?" And Fiona quipped "Take me!" Everyone laughed.
A day later the phone rang. Turns out the 12-year-old is much more interested in coming if Fiona comes too. So Fiona has been offered the chance! Not a free ticket or anything, but the company, organizational skills and supervision of kind, adventurous, seasoned travellers. Since she's making money like crazy this summer, she can afford to pay more than half the cost. She's convinced she can make her schooling fit (the school has a reputation for supporting trips like this) even though she'll likely be taking one junior- and three senior-level courses that semester. Today she's been researching vaccine recommendations and requirements and ogling photos of tortoises, iguanas and blue-footed boobies. We'll see ... we're going to let the idea gestate for a few days and then have a proper family meeting to decide.
(For those of you who haven't yet had kids who are teenagers, here's an example of what you might have in your future. She's looking at the list of the vaccinations that she needs and/or might opt to have and says "I'll have to go have sex just to use all that freakin' immunity!"
For the record, she was quite intentionally making fun of the argument that teaching kids about safe sex will encourage them to have sex. )
Anyway, life's exciting here in a bunch of ways. Music camp friends are going to start arriving in town tonight, so I probably won't have much time to post for a while. Cheers all!